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Speaking of rats- Ratty was staring at the dead cat. It was really getting ripe. The smell alone was enough to turn your stomach unless you were a rat. He was wondering what the cat died from. He thought it would be hilarious if it was rat poison. It would make him inedible but you can"t have everything. That gave him a chuckle. It didn"t matter anyway just so long as the cat was dead. Dead cats can"t sneak up and pounce on you. They also make a delicious meal unless poisoned. Oh, they were still yummy but then you died too. Then a rat would eat you and die and so on. They"re a lot better than some of the garbage a rat ate. Ratty had eaten so much rat poison he was immune to it. After breakfast of ripe cat, Ratty went down the alley to one of his hangouts. He walked there instead of scurrying. Scurrying seemed classless and undignified. Along the way he saw a colony of mice building a nice little nest. Mice are sort of like rats except smaller, less aggressive, and less frightening; sort of sissy rat wannabees. There were a large number of rats gathered in the basement of this apartment building. There was an argument going on as to whether it was more fun to tease a cat or a pest control guy. "Listen, you make a mistake with a cat and you"re gone. D-E-A-D gone", said Grover. "Not all cats are like Tinkerbell." All the rats laughed at that. Tinkerbell was Mrs. Simpson"s cat. It was fat and stupid. On top of being slow it was afraid of rats. It was afraid of mice! Every rat in the neighborhood had teased this cat at one time or another. The apartment manager couldn"t figure out why the rats liked her apartment so much. He spent all her rent money on pest control. The pest control guy could never see a rat but saw evidence they had been around. Rat crap always tells the story. He also wondered about that cat. What kind of rats hung around where a cat lived and were never seen when he got there to kill them? "Hey, Ratty." Ratty looked to see his friend Longtail grinning at him as if he"d just stolen the cheese from a trap. That was another enjoyable game. Ratty and Longtail had spent a lot of time dong that. It was great when you won but hell on wheels when you were a little too slow. "Hello, Longtail. What"s up?" "I hear they have some fresh vermin down at the docks. I thought we could go see if there"s anything new we could pass on to the humans. We haven"t started a plague for a long time. I think they"re overdue." "OK, but we need to be careful. We get rid of all the humans and there won"t be any garbage to pick through. Yea, we can feast on them for a while but not forever." As they went along to the docks they spotted another friend, Doofus. He was easy to spot since he had a mousetrap on his leg. He was dragging it along behind him. He apparently had been a little slow at trap stealing. He was a little slow period, hence the name. "Say there, Doofus, that trap makes getting around a little tough, don"t it?", Ratty said. "Yea, it does. I"d like to get it off but can"t figure a way out of it." "Well, you know, the only thing to be done is to chew your leg off", Longtail added. "Oh? I don"t know as I could do that." "Well, sure. Me and Longtail could do it for you. If you like." "Well, if you"re positive it"s the only way." Ratty was positive it was the only way. Down on the docks Ratty and Longtail sat on a crate and watched as the immigrant rats scurried down. Immigrants always scurry until they get comfortable. One of them jumped up on the crate. The three of them sniffed away at one another. It was the rat way. "Whewee! You smell terrible. You smell like you took a bath or something", Ratty said with disgust. "Yea, it rained on me and I haven"t had a chance to get dirtied up." "Well", Longtail told him, "there"s a sewer over there. Better get some odor on you before you head into the city. Otherwise, some gangsta rat is going to mess you up bad." After that rat left Ratty and Longtail went on board. They ran into a couple of rats they knew and went to a cheese party. "Wow!", Ratty said, "this cheese is really ripe." "Well, it"s been a long trip", was the reply. They partied and slept and partied some more. They didn"t notice that the ship had begun to move. When they went up to go ashore they discovered there was no shore. They stood staring at the water and wondered where they"d end up and if the other rats would miss them. Ratty summed it up best when he said, "Oh,rats!"