A Little Help From a Friend is a story inspired by The Lion King II: Simba's Pride. It was published in 2004 by Scholastic as part of Disney Tuck-in Tales: Stories of Friendship.
One early morning, Kiara, the princess of Pride Rock, awakens her father, Simba, for a walk around the Pride Lands. On their way out of Pride Rock, the two run into Timon and Pumbaa, Kiara's infamous babysitters. Before Simba can assign them a task, Zazu arrives with news that Outsiders have been sighted in the western canyon, and Simba is forced to cut the walk short.
Just before leaving, he instructs Kiara to stay in sight of Pride Rock at all times with Timon and Pumbaa at her side, and she reluctantly agrees. However, as she watches her father leave, she resolves to abandon her bumbling babysitters and visit the western canyon herself.
Alongside Timon and Pumbaa, Kiara enters a grove of trees, where her babysitters become instantly captivated by the prospect of a good grub hunt. Kiara takes advantage of their distraction to slip away, but as she is escaping, she is tackled to the ground by a young male cub named Kovu, who immediately recognizes her as his old playmate. The two have a delighted reunion in which Kiara invites Kovu to tag along with her to the western canyon, but he declines, not wanting to see his own pride driven off.
A disappointed Kiara starts to leave until she realizes that it would be much more fun to stay and play with Kovu, so she turns back and starts up a game of tag with him. As the cubs are playing, they hear a distant sound of distress and follow it to where Pumbaa is pacing anxiously beneath a tall tree. Upon being questioned, he explains that Timon had been climbing a tree in search of grubs when he had knocked himself out and gotten his foot tangled in a vine.
As Pumbaa finishes his story, Kiara gets an idea. While Kovu climbs the tree to reach Timon, she clambers onto Pumbaa's back, where she instructs Kovu to chew through the vine that is suspending Timon. Kovu does so, and Timon falls safely onto Kiara's waiting back.
With Timon safe, Kiara invites Kovu to accompany them to Pride Rock, but Kovu reminds her that as an Outsider, he is not welcome in the Pride Lands. The two cubs share a bittersweet goodbye, and Kiara follows her babysitters back home to Pride Rock. Along the way, Timon revives, and Pumbaa recounts how Kiara and Kovu had saved his life. A grateful Timon suggests that they do not tell Simba about their Outsider friend, but rather mention him as a friend.
When the three return to Pride Rock and reunite with Simba, they learn that the warning about the Outsiders had been a false alarm. They relate to Simba what had happened to Timon, and Simba praises his daughter's quick thinking. Kiara simply replies that many things are possible, if only with a little help from a friend.