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Adventure 1 – Living in a Tough World
There’s a small town that not many go to, but many people make legends of this place. The town’s name is Inanis. Legendary people are said to come from here along with the origins of certain urban legends and folklore. Ricky is the only rat in the world with red and blue eyes and he and his family and friends live in the city as it goes through rough times. Few know why Ricky has red and blue eyes, but it appears he has a connection to The Caretaker or The Light that no other being in this town has.
He’s been playing with his friends on the outskirts of town. They’ve been playing tag and hide and go seek with each other until several human pass through the area they’re playing in. They hide in the trees as they pass.
His friend Jasper says, “These humans are a nuisance.”
Jasper’s brother, Jett says, “We should find a way to be rid of them. They seem to get sick when we’re around them, so let’s run around their houses and touch everything that’s theirs.”
“We shouldn’t bother them,” Ricky says, “They’re just trying to survive and live a good life like us.”
“You’re right Ricky, but it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t make them know that they’re bothering us.”
“How could they understand us?” Becky says, “They can’t even understand our words.”
“They’re such illiterates.”
“Never mind them for now. Let’s just get back to playing.”
“Wait, did you hear that?” Ricky says as a noise catches his ears.
A noise that sounds like a horse running through the forest. Ricky sees a dark shadow in the distance with yellow eyes. As it comes closer he sees that it’s the Rat of Decay, a legendary rat that comes to towns that are filled with filth and lack good people. It spreads the plague and is known to be weak to fire.
“We have to stop it! It’s the Rat of Decay!” Ricky says as he climbs down from the tree to get rocks and other things to light sticks on fire.
“Why should we? If that rat gets rid of the humans here, then we can own this town.”
“Then who would feed us? If the humans go, then our source of food goes too. It’s not like you can farm like they can. Give me a hand here Becky.”
“Already with you.”
The pack of rats use the sticks of fire as weapons and stick them in the Rat of Decay. Some hit the monster while others are swiped away, which catches the forest on fire. With one last fire stick, Ricky runs towards the rat and sticks in the monster to burn it to ashes. Though the monster burns to nothing, it can and will reappear if the circumstances are right. The fires in the forest attract the attention of the people in the town who rush to put it out. Ricky and his friends scurry away as the forest comes down around them. A branch lands on Becky and Ricky stops in his track to save her.
“Don’t worry about me Ricky and save yourself!” Becky says as she tries to push him away.
“No! I’m not letting you die this way. We still have to get married and have children later!”
“If that’s what you want, then you should ask the other girls! They’d love to be with someone like you!”
“You’re wrong Becky. You’re the only one for me!”
The branch is slightly lifted up by an unseen force and Ricky carries Becky out of the burning branch and out of the forest.
“That was amazing Ricky!”
“That was more like a miracle.”
“The Caretaker does look after you more than any other rat I know.”
“I think the best thing he gave me was you.”
“Can you get us to safety before you start smooth talking me?”
Once the group of friends get home, they explain the situation to their elders. They’re happy that Ricky chose the right decision and throw a small party for him. Ricky is usually celebrated for his deeds of bravery. It’s what got him his red and blue eyes in the first place. He recounts the tale of how he got it to his pack of rats.
“It was a grey and awful day. I was starving to find food for us when I noticed a baby in the mud near a crashed carriage and it appeared that the parents perished in the accident. I ignored the baby at first, but I found a blanket and toy in the carriage and give them to it. After a few moments, it calmed down in time for a pack of human bandits to find us. It appeared that they were the reason the carriage crashed and why the baby was orphaned. I had the opportunity to run away, but I didn’t because I knew I had to do the right thing even if I died. As I attacked one of them head on, they stabbed their pointy sword through my eye and my entire body. That’s when the Caretaker hit me with a bolt of lightning and saved my life. He blinded the bandits both literally and figuratively because even they could sense his presence. The baby crawled over to me, pet me on the head, then ascended into the heavens. That is the story as to how I got these eyes and abilities.”
Everyone claps for him and cheers for Ricky. Ricky is a rat that goes on adventures in dangerous places to help people and his pack of rats. This is only the first of many that will happen in the town of Inanis. An empty, dirty, and depraved town that’s a perfect place for vermin of all kinds. A place of legends and of nightmares.
Adventure 2 – Both Beauty and Beast
A woman is known to wonder the world asking people if they think she’s pretty. She wears a mask around her mouth, but she has pretty black hair, shining brown eyes, and a decent dress. No matter what you answered, she would take the mask off from her mouth to reveal her shark-like teeth then ask you again if you thought she was pretty. If you said yes with a convincing tone of voice and expression, then she would leave you alone. If you couldn’t do this or said no, she would take your face off your head without ripping it off and you would suffocate to death because you couldn’t breathe. If you were female, she would take your appearance and your body would look like her previous victim. The woman was originally a princess who was rejected by every single prince in the land, so she sold her soul to The Inverted Light and goes around stealing other people’s beauty and getting rid of those who don’t like how she looks. Her real name is lost to time, so people call her the Princess of Many Faces.
Rumors have been circulating of this woman being in Inanis and Ricky is on the lookout for her even though she isn’t known to harm animals of any kind. His friend Jasper joins him.
As Jasper eats some grapes they found, he says, “Do you really think you can get rid that freaky princess, Ricky?”
“I’ll try to get rid of her from this town at least.”
“What’s your plan?”
“I’m still thinking of that.”
“Wait. I see a woman who could be her.”
Ricky points to a woman walking the streets.
“I’m going to go after her.”
“What if he’s just a woman wear a mask because she doesn’t like the smell of the town? Maybe we should wait until she does something?”
“We have to take a chance before she takes another life.”
Without a second thought, Ricky rushes down to the woman, runs up her body, then removes her mask. She isn’t the princess he seeks. The woman smacks Ricky off her face and runs away.
Jasper rejoins him and tells him that, “You aren’t going to find that woman like this.”
“Then what do you suggest we do?”
“Keep an ear out for a woman asking if they think she’s pretty. You know it takes longer than a few seconds for that beast to attack.”
“But that could happen anywhere in the town! We could be late…”
“Huh. Do you hear that?”
Jasper and Ricky run around the corner to find the woman who Ricky demasked now faceless and suffocating. Ricky tries to cut out a hole in her face to help her breath, but all he does is scrape her face.
A voice above him hands him a cloth then tells him, “Put this cloth over her face.”
Ricky takes the cloth and puts it over the woman’s face. After a few seconds, she gets up with her face back to how it used to be. She gasps for air then looks around for her savior. For some reason, she realizes it’s Ricky, so she picks him and thanks him.
“Thank you so much for saving me! I had no idea that a rat like you would save me,” she says.
“You’re welcome,” Ricky responds.
“What?! I can understand you!”
“You can? Well if that’s the case, can you tell me where that woman who stole your face went?”
“I don’t know, I’m sorry. Once she took my face, my vision went completely black.”
“Oh, well I’m sorry you had to go through that. I’m going to catch her and drive her out of town.”
“Let me help you.”
“Thank you. What’s your name?”
“Thank you, Pepper. You’re saving lives by helping us.”
“No, thank you. If you hadn’t been here, I would’ve died. I’ll carry this cloth with me as a good luck charm.”
Both Jasper and Ricky travel on Pepper’s shoulders while looking around for the woman with Pepper’s face.
“You’re lucky you have the Caretaker on your side Pepper,” Ricky says.
“You don’t know who the Caretaker is? The Light?” says Jasper.
“Oh, I know who you’re talking about now. You’re a special rat, aren’t you Ricky? Are there more like you?”
“None that I know of.”
“It’s a shame that a rat has to do what a more capable human should. No offense.”
“Hey, you would’ve been dead in the streets if it weren’t for Ricky.”
“It’s okay Jasper. No offense taken Pepper.”
“Why aren’t there more people out today?”
“What? You aren’t from these parts?”
“No, I’m a traveler who wanted to see this town to see if I can find an urban legend.”
“A lot of humans get into trouble when they come here for that reason.”
“Yeah, you should leave town for your own safety.”
“I will once I help you two out.”
Pepper and the two rats travel through the town until the find someone who looks like she has Pepper’s face. She’s turned around, but Ricky urges Pepper to check her out anyway, but once she turns around, the woman is revealed to not look like Pepper. It’s only their hairstyles that are similar.
“I’m sorry miss.”
“Uh, it’s-Oh! You have rats on your shoulders!”
“It’s fine. They’re harmless and friendly.”
Ricky smiles and friendly waves to the woman.
“Be on the lookout for a woman with a mask on her mouth. She’ll steal your face.”
“I heard of that legend roaming the streets. Thank you for the warning. I’ll be heading home now.”
After patrolling the town for a bit longer, Pepper sees the princess they’re looking for as the turn a corner.
Pepper quickly steps back and hides then says, “That’s her! What should we do?”
“We’ll use the cloth that gave you back your face,” Ricky says, “If it can give you back your face, it should give the princess back her original face.”
Jasper asks, “And that will get rid of her how exactly?”
“I don’t know, but it should do something.”
“I’ll try to help…in some way. She already has my face, so I don’t think she can do anything else to me,” Pepper says.
“Alright. We should move before she gets away. Come on!”
Ricky and Jasper sprint towards the princess. She knows their intentions because of the Inverted Light and she takes off her the faces she’s obtained and throws them at them. Each one of them screams and home in on Ricky or Jasper with their mouths wide open. Pepper grabs a nearby sharp two-by-four piece of wood and protects her rat friends with it.
“You took my face you witch! You aren’t going to harm anyone ever again!”
Pepper then breaks her weapon over the head of the princess, which allows Ricky and Jasper to put the cloth over the princess’s face. The princess tries to get it off, but Ricky and Jasper keep it on her face until she stops struggling. Once they take off the cloth, her face goes back to the one she originally had. Her face along with her body turn to dust soon after.
“Thank you for helping us Pepper,” Ricky says, “We wouldn’t have been able to do this without you.”
“No, thank you. This was a great adventure for me despite almost dying.”
“I guess this is goodbye. I hope I’ll see you later.”
“Me too, but first, tell me if you know this. Do rats and other animals go to Heaven?”
“We have souls like humans, so we do in a way.”
“Ok then. I hope to see you again!”
“Me too! See Jasper? Some humans aren’t so bad.”
“I guess not.”
Adventure 3 – Don’t Talk to Strangers
No matter where you are, there are legends of spirit hitchhikers. Some legends end in death while others end in the disappearance of people. There are many stories that surround certain ghosts. Some spirits search for revenge, some are demons masquerading as weak people, and others are looking for closure. Because there are rumors of dangerous spirits, Ricky and his friend, Jett, are going to get rid of these spirits with a book of exorcist prayers and commands.
While searching for spirits, Jett asks Ricky, “Do you think we might find any animal spirits? What about rat spirits?”
“We already encountered the Rat of Decay two days ago, so it wouldn’t surprise me?”
“When are you going to marry Becky?”
“What kind of question is that?”
“A normal one.”
“I’ll marry her when I get a little older. We’re still young rats.”
“Can you tell me what Jasper and you did yesterday? He didn’t tell me much.”
“We got rid of the Princess of Many Faces and saved a human named Pepper yesterday.”
“That’s probably why he didn’t say much. I don’t blame him. Was she a pretty human woman?”
“I guess so. Why is that even a concern for you?”
“I could’ve told Becky what you said.”
“I’d toss you in the trash.”
“Really? I thought you were supposed to be merciful.”
“You’re a rat. It shouldn’t bother you.”
“Why did you even bring me along?”
“If seeing a human in a positive light can change your brother, it can probably change you.”
A spirit appears before the two rats along the road and asks them, “Can either of you lead me home?”
“I can,” Ricky says before saying a prayer that sends the spirit to where they’re supposed to go.
“You know your plan isn’t going to work if we can’t find a spirit who’s gonna-”
Jett is interrupted by the sounds of a carriage and horse going out of control in the forest. The two rush to find a horse being pulled into a small well with a crashed carriage. A pastor is patching up what appears to be a prisoner who suffered injuries from the crash. The bones of the horse fly out after it somehow fit into the small well and half a person comes crawling out of it. Both Ricky and the pastor chant exorcist prayers, which makes the spirit burn to ashes, which disappear into the air.
The pastor looks down at Ricky and says, “Never in my years did I think I would see an exorcist rat.”
“I never thought I’d see a horse fit into a well like that.”
“And you can talk too. What is your name, my little friend?”
“Ricky. What is yours father?”
“My name is Father Urien. What are you and your friend doing here at this time of day?”
“I’m trying to protect the people of Inanis and teach my friend how good humans can be.”
“That is very interesting. You have to be a miracle from Heaven above. I’m here to take this man to a convent here in town. He’s trying to repent for all the things he’s done in life.”
“He looks like a prisoner,” Jett says.
“This man escaped from prison months ago.”
“Shouldn’t you turn him into the authorities for punishment for his crimes?”
“He’s already been punished by the One whose name is above all others and now he wants to make up for his mistakes. The Royals do not have power over Him.”
“That’s true. I thought humans made the royals to have power over Him, but I see that there’s some don’t see it that way,” Jett says as his respect for the humans grows.
“Thank you for opening your eyes to that. Can you help me get my friend over to the convent? I’ll be sure to reward you.”
“Of course,” Ricky says.
Father Urien helps the criminal walk as Ricky and Jett travel alongside them. Since rats have a better sense of spirits than humans do, the two lead them in a direction that allows them to avoid any hostile spirits.
“Tell me human,” Jett says to the criminal, “What did you do to be sent to jail?”
“My name is Ziv and my deeds are too horrifying to speak of. Let’s just say I have more bodies than a cemetery and stole more than a tax collector. After escaping prison, I thought I could just relax until I died, but visions and demons kept clawing at my soul until I couldn’t take it anymore. I met Father Urien after that and this is how I got to where I am now.”
“And now you think you can be saved after all you’ve done?”
Father Urien says, “It’s how grace works. I too was in a similar situation to this man’s and obtained redemption.”
“If you say so.”
They make it to the edge of Inanis, but a small group of spirits and demons prevents them from leaving the forest.
“We’re going to clear a path for Ziv then we’ll take care of these dark spirits,” Father Urien says to Ricky.
“What are you talking about father? I won’t just leave you,” Ziv says.
“You’ll have to. They sense the darkness within your soul and they’ll use it against us all, so you have to escape.”
“You should go too, Jett. It’s not safe for you here.”
“Tch. If you say so,” both Jett and Ziv seem to say at the same time.
Father Urien takes out a dagger and sword from his robe. Both have marks of the Caretaker on them and seem to shine in an unusual way despite the lack of sunlight in the sky.
“I used to be a knight in the royal army, so I’m no stranger to combat. Let’s go.”
Ricky and Father Urien clear a path for both of their friends with their prayers and strength until their friends are able to safely leave the forest.
“Are you okay father?” Ricky asks as he notices the scratches on Father Urien’s body and face.
“Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil. For thou art with me.”
“Father!” Ziv screams as he runs back with Jett on his shoulders.
“What are you doing Ziv?!”
The spirits fly over Ricky and Father Urien and encircle Ziv and Jett. They whisper in his ears to go back to his violent ways and get rid of Father Urien.
“Don’t listen to them, Ziv! Do what I told you!” Jett says.
“I’m not sure if it’ll work now!”
“You have to have a little faith!”
“I…I will! Begone spirits! My soul doesn’t belong to you!”
A light emanates from Ziv’s body which dispels the spirits around him. Both Ricky and Father Urien ask their friends if they’re okay.
Ziv and Jett smile at each other before looking at their friends and telling them that, “We’re better than okay.”
“Ziv, I can see that your soul is ready to accept redemption.”
“Thank you, father, but I’m sure I still have much to do.”
“Of course. This process of living a good and honest life is never easy or simple.”
“But I’m sure it’ll be worth it. Thank you, Ricky and Jett, for helping us.”
“There’s no thanks necessary. We’re happy to help,” Ricky says.
“Is it okay if I see you again Ziv?” Jett asks.
“It goes without saying. You two can come visit us anytime you like.”
After saying goodbye to their new friends, Ricky asks, “I’m surprised you made a new friend. A human friend on top of that.”
“I’m surprised too. They’re not all that bad. Even the criminal ones.”
Adventure 4 – Here There be Monsters
There are dozens of rumors of sea and lake monsters. Some of the legends tell of creatures that match the description of beasts of old, others tell about wildlife that are abnormal versions of existing animals, and the last kinds are beyond imagination. Most of these monsters are dangerous to humans only when they bother them. The one Ricky is going after is a lake monster that killed his grandfather and grandmother who were fishing in the lake. He has put their untimely passing behind him, but his parents haven’t so they join him. They bring bait, sharp knives, and other things to draw out the creature of the lake. They have to take quite the hike to make it to the lake where the creature is supposed to be, so Ricky and his parents hop on a merchant’s carriage that is going in that direction.
Ricky says to his parents, “This is going to be really dangerous mom and dad. Be careful.”
His dad, Apollo, says, “Look who’s being the parent. You don’t have to worry about us son.”
“We can handle ourselves. Just because we’re old, it doesn’t mean we’re weak,” his mom, Daphne says.
“I know. I’m just saying because I care.”
“Listen to our son, Apollo. He’s growing up to sound like a parent already.”
“At least he cares about us unlike other young rats his ages.”
“Well you know the saying the humans have, ‘Every son is a knight to his mother who is his queen. His father is king, and his love is his princess. His love will become his queen once he marries her and gives her children and the cycle goes on’.”
“Well he certainly is our little knight.”
“We’re here mom and dad.”
The rats get off the carriage and make their way up to where the lake monster resides.
“Tell me Ricky, when are you going to marry Becky?” Daphne asks.
“What? I don’t know. Why? Do you want grandchildren that badly?”
“No, we’re just wondering. You’ve been together for years and I know you have a ring somewhere in your room.”
“I-I don’t have a ring for yet. I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“You can impress her at the sports event coming up soon. I’ll be making the winner’s wreath again. Did I ever tell you how I met your mother?”
“You told me many times.”
“Well, I met her in a beautiful tree with pink flowers as leaves. It’s as if she were like the doves in the sky.”
“And your father always exaggerates our meeting.”
“He even made a painting of it with paint he stole from an artist’s house.”
“We still have it hanging in our room, so you must still like it.”
“Of course I do.”
“Hey, mom and dad. We’re here.”
Ricky and his parents set up their fishing equipment and have their weapons ready. They set themselves up in the same way Ricky’s grandparents were. To draw out the creature, they send their bait to the bottom of the river then wiggle the bait on what feels like a rock at the bottom of the lake. This makes a longnecked, snake-like monster emerge from the lake. It makes a loud roaring noise at the sky then focuses on Ricky and his parents. The rats attack the creature with sharp knives and sword, but their attacks barely affect the creature. Pores on the creature’s skin suck in Ricky and his parents who get sent to different parts of the creature’s body.
A light envelops Ricky’s body, which gives him a suit of rat knight armor, so he’s safe when he falls into the digestive stomach of the monster.
“Mom! Dad! Are you out there?!”
He can hear someone screaming something back, but he’s not sure if it’s his parents.
“Get out of here! I’ll take care of the rest.”
There’s silence this time. Ricky sees that he has a sword along with his armor. He walks around the stomach of the beast until he finds a tube that leads out of it.
“The heart has to be somewhere. This monster can’t be that big.”
Alas, Ricky finds himself walking through a maze in the monster’s body. It’s almost if the monster is designed from the inside to be a maze as the inside of the monster is vast and more open like a catacomb. There are skeletons of humans and other animals in the monster’s body that appear to very old. Among the skeletons, he finds a pair of rat skeletons with a couple trinkets on them. These trinkets are the ones that his grandma and grandfather.
“Grandma…Grandpop…I’ll be sure to avenge you and make sure this monster doesn’t hurt anyone else ever again!”
Ricky takes their trinkets as good luck charms. Suddenly, he’s attacked by goblins that act like the creature’s immune system against attackers. When Ricky slices them, they dissolve and split into two then two into three. Seeing that he can’t defeat them, he sprints towards the general direction he thinks the creature’s heart is. He hears a beating sound as he gets closer to it with the goblins hot on his tail, literally.
“I don’t have time to go through this maze of a body!”
As aggravation set in, Ricky cuts his way through the walls in the body until he cuts into the heart’s chamber. The heart is suspended by chains and worshipped by the goblins. Thinking on his feet, he scurries across the chains and cuts down the heart, which melts the monster from the inside out. Ricky quickly cuts his way out of the monster’s body while running for his life. Eventually, Ricky cuts his way the throat of the monster that lifts him up and out of the monster’s body as it uses its last breath to scream out at the sky again. With a sky view of the monster, Ricky can now see that the largeness of the monster’s insides makes sense now as its whole serpent body is a small mountain disguised by the forest.
“Wow, this view is-terrifying!”
To slow his descent, Ricky plunges his sword into the monster, which slows him considerably until he hits the ground and rolls down the monster and finally back onto solid ground.
“Mom?! Dad?! Oh no.”
Ricky cuts into the monster’s dead body to get to his parents, but they end up cutting themselves out not too far from him. He quickly runs to them and embraces them.
“Mom, dad! You’re okay!”
“We’re a bit bruised and cut, but we’re okay. What’s more important is that you’re okay,” Apollo says while holding his wife to help her stand.
“I found grandma and grandpop’s trinkets. Here.”
“Ricky…you found these in the monster?” Daphne asks.
“I found them near two rat skeletons. They died holding each other.”
His parents take a second to mourn but then smile.
“I’m sure they died happily,” Apollo says, “They’re probably smiling down from Heaven on their little boy who took down this giant monster.”
“How did you two survive?”
“We used our knives to slow our descent in the monster and wandered its body until we felt it dying. That’s when we started to cut our way out.”
“It’s a miracle you two survived.”
“It’s a miracle we all survived. Now let’s go home. I don’t think either your mother or I can handle another adventure like this.”
The family laughs before they go home where they tell the rest of the pack what happened and celebrate Ricky and his parents’ victory. The trinkets of Ricky’s grandparents are placed in a special part of their hideout where they keep treasured items that they honor from rats who were remarkable.
Adventure 5 – A Mad Dead Man’s Wonderland
You should never wander too far into the unknown otherwise you will lose your way back home and you’ll be lost forever. Because of the nature of Inanis, a wicked witch cursed the town, but she wasn’t able to do so before being burned at the stake. Instead, the witch secretly made another curse with an unknown effect. The place where the witch performed her experiments was destroyed and a hole full of valuable gold was found beneath the house. People from the town mined the seemingly infinite amounts of gold until the hole lead them to an unknown dimension. Few came back and told tales of a mysterious and even horrifying place full of strange beings and magic.
Ricky and Becky go to where the hole in and travel down it.
As they go down the hole, Ricky says, “Are you sure you want to do this? I can do this on my own.”
“You’ve said that so many times already and I’m not changing my answer. Everyone else has already gone on dangerous adventures with you. Now, it’s my turn.”
“Okay, but I’m just warning you.”
“I can handle myself.”
“Unless you need me to save you…again.”
“Hey, don’t act like you don’t like being the hero saving the girl.”
“Hey, don’t act like you don’t like being saved when I risk my life for you. I love you, Becky. I don’t want you getting hurt or worse.”
“You’re such a smooth talker, aren’t you?”
“I just say the truth.”
Eventually, they go so far down the hole that they end up on the other side of it. They end up in a magical kingdom with a clear blue sky, humongous plant life even for humans, and birds of many different breeds in the skies.
“This is beautiful,” Becky says.
“Yeah, but why is everything upside down?”
They look underneath their feet and see that they’re standing on the sky. This is when they fall down to the ground. Ricky holds onto Becky and covers her in a way so that he can take the effect of the fall. One of the humongous plants catches them and gently puts them down on the ground. It then bows to Becky.
“Uh…thank you,” Becky says to it.
Ricky looks up at the sky then says, “Where’s the hole that we came from? I can’t see it.”
Becky looks up.
“Me neither. I guess we’ll have to find another way out.”
Ricky holds Becky’s hand as he walks forward.
“I didn’t know you were so scared Ricky. I thought you were supposed to be the brave one.”
“I am. We just don’t know how this world works. I mean we stood on the sky and a plant caught us and saved our lives.”
“And you also just like holding my hand.”
“Ye-Yeah. That too.”
While traveling through the forest of exotic plants, they hear cackling. The cackling gets louder and louder until a head of a cat appears out of thin air.
He says to the couple, “Oh, rats have made their way into our kingdom, and one of them has red and blue eyes. That must mean you’re special.”
“We just came here to see what the fuss was about and why some people haven’t made it out of here,” Ricky says.
“Well why would you ever want to leave here? It’s such a wonderful place.”
“Are you keeping them somewhere?”
“No, they are keeping themselves here.”
“Tell me where they are then.”
“Why would I do that? You’ll leave after you find them. Enjoy yourselves while you’re here. Let me show you a few of my tricks.”
The hands of the cat appear out of thin air and they move around which makes the plants in the area dance and sing. Becky is amused by the serenade of the plants while Ricky is only slightly amused.
“How about this then for the gentleman?”
Women ladybugs, mice, and plant spirits come out to flirt and appease Ricky, but he holds firm to Becky’s hand.
“Thank you, ladies, but Becky is the only girl for me. I don’t need another.”
“How about this then?”
The cat holds Ricky with both of his hands then separates his lower half from his upper without killing him.
Ricky’s legs start moving around as if it had a mind of its own and starts dancing. This is somewhat amusing to Becky, but part of her doesn’t feel right for some reason.
“Give me my legs back!”
“Ugh. Fine. You’re no fun.”
Ricky’s lower half attaches itself back to his upper as if nothing happened. He can also move around with no problems whatsoever.
“But now the two of you see the wonders of this place. Why won’t you stay for a while?”
“Thank you, but no thank you. Maybe we will next time.”
“There won’t be a next time and you know it. Maybe I should take you apart again.”
“Don’t touch me!”
When Ricky’s hand touches the cat’s, a light from Ricky’s hand slaps away the cat.
“You’re-you’re touched by Him!”
The cat and everything in the kingdom begin to melt as the light turns to darkness.
“We have to go Becky!” Ricky says as he pulls her along.
The two then sprint on all fours until they reach a rapid river. They see a boat with oars heading towards them, so they jump on it and take control as they head down the river. The river then turns black as the sky. Teeth fill its waters and doll hands start reaching up from it as if gasping for air. Sea serpents from the river that are black, doll faced, and filled with the souls of suffering people rage against the tide and the impending waterfall, which their boat falls down despite their best efforts to fight the tide.
A black bird with a doll face saves the couple and says, “S-s-save us.”
The doll faced bird takes the couple to the castle of the kingdom that is now laced with spikes. They land on the balcony of the castle with their boat and small bodies intact.
“Regretting coming with me yet Becky?”
“No, I’ll never regret being with you.”
The couple kiss before heading into the castle and confronting the queen of this kingdom, a magical witch who takes the form of her black cat. A light envelops Ricky to give him his knight armor and sword. This time he is also given a small knife.
The queen’s black cat knights attack Ricky. He swiftly uses his new weapon to frighten the cats with his fast movements before cutting at their legs, which bring them to heel. He does this to all of the knight till none stand and all bow to him.
“This is over,” Ricky says with his sword pointing at the witch queen, “Release the prisoners and I won’t have to send you to the afterlife.”
“Foolish rodent! You will do no such thing!”
The witch casts black magic on Ricky, which he struggles to fight against as it saps his strength. He tries slicing at it, but it has little effect since he can’t swing properly. Becky comes up from behind him and puts her hands on his shoulders.
“You can beat her Ricky! I believe in you!”
Becky’s encouragement allows Ricky to lift his sword up, which is now emanating a golden light. The light from the sword allows Ricky to send out a light wave from it that slices through the black magic, the witch, and the wall behind her. The witch turns to dust as the kingdom begins to implode from the inside. The bird from before and the other doll faced creatures take Ricky and Becky out of the castle and escape from everything that’s turning in on itself. Once everything in the kingdom is gone, it releases an explosion of energy that sends the couple and the captives through the hole they came in through and back into the normal world.
The hole is now gone, and the captives are back to their normal form as the witch’s magic is gone from them. They thank the rats then go their separate ways.
“So, what did you think of that, Becky? Do you still want to go on adventures with me?”
“Let me think about it-Of course I do! You would’ve died or worse if I wasn’t there to help you out.”
“I don’t know. I could’ve used the memory of everyone else I knew and you. Maybe that would’ve worked too.”
“I’m just kidding. I’m in your debt for helping me through my latest adventure.”
“That means you have to give me a massage and compliment me for the rest of the day.”
“You said you’re in my debt and I’m already cashing in. Don’t make me give it more thought and make it worse for you.”
“What? You have to compliment me.”
“Yes, princess. The love of my life.”
Adventure 6 – Hell’s Boy
There was an unfaithful nun who couldn’t keep her vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. As a result, she gave birth to a child with small demon horns. He cursed at the sky using swear words and other curses that witches and devil worshippers would know. The priests and nun present at the birth tried to exorcise the demon, but at least six of them are killed, including the nun who gave birth, before the child escaped. The demon child is rumored to live in deep within the forests of Inanis. It kills wildlife and humans for sport and food.
Ricky is accompanied by Becky again because of what happened the other day. Her parents and his parents encouraged her to go with him since they told their parents and the pack their experience. They bring weapons, a book of exorcism prayers, and other tools in case the demon child set traps as it is known to.
“Why did you even complain about me coming with you? You don’t want me here.”
“I always want you with me, Becky. Truthfully, I’m scared of something bad happening to you. This is why I say that you should stay at home with the pack where it’s safe.”
Becky hugs him.
“You don’t have to be afraid, Ricky. You’ll protect me, won’t you?”
“With my life.”
“Now don’t be too risky. You wouldn’t want to break my heart.”
“I won’t make any promises should the situation come up.”
“You’re such a cruel hero.”
“And a dedicated one at that for such a beautiful princess. Speaking of princesses, did you like that snow globe I gave you?”
“Of course I do. By the way, who’s the princess of calmness and patience?”
“She’s a princess in human myth and legend. A princess who had to stand on a sharp sword to save her kingdom. It’s said she stood on the sword for hours without even damaging her skin. She was a wise princess who never let her anger and emotions get to her even when things got dangerous and the villains were mocking her.”
“Her standing on the sword reminds me of the legend of the little mermaid. When she got feet, didn’t she feel like she was walking on knives?”
“I think so, but the princess I’m talking about is a bit happier of a tale.”
Sounds of rustling can be heard in the forest as if something is jumping across the branches.
“We should probably get ready now,” Ricky says as he begins to put his plans in motion.
He sets up traps for demon child then he and Becky begin to draw it out with prayers and shows of affections. This draws out the demon child who attacks the couple. Ricky and Becky quickly retaliate, which makes the demon fly into the trees. It’s still visible, so they chase it. It brings them through its traps, which include bear traps, nets, and holes with sharp sticks that are covered with branches. Ricky throws his knives at the demon and it cuts off its wings. It yells an unnatural scream in the air that makes the leaves on the trees around it die and fall off. With rage searing through its body, it chases Ricky and Becky. They lead it back to their trap that ensnares him in a small ball.
Father Urien meets up with them and says, “I’m surprised you two captured this demon, but then again, I shouldn’t be surprised by anything when it involves you, Ricky.”
Dead animals and walking corpses come out of the ground with a demonic look to them.
“It’s somehow taken control of them! Get out of here father. We’ll hold them off.”
“I’ll help by exorcising this child. It should get rid of the dead.”
Ricky and Becky use their many knives and leftover traps to hold off the dead. Even when they cut off their heads, the bodies of the dead keep moving. The only way to stop them is by cutting off all their limbs, but even then, their torsos keep wiggling around.
“Father! We’re in trouble here.”
“Keep them busy for a little longer!”
Becky begins to be overwhelmed by the dead, so Ricky rushes to her aid. The Ricky breaks his weapons while fighting the dead. All hope seems lost for the rats until Father Urien finishes the exorcism. The child goes back to a normal human being and smiles and giggles at Father Urien.
He smiles at the baby boy then says, “Thank you for all you’ve done,” to Ricky and Becky, “I’ll be taking the child to the orphanage. Hopefully, he’ll be adopted by a loving family.”
“It was good working with you again Father Urien. How’s Ziv doing?”
“Better than ever. The man might turn out to be a better priest than I.”
“Is that so?”
“It’s very much so. Your friends Jasper and Jett help him when they visit. I should get to caring for this little boy. I’m sure he’s tired after all he’s been through.”
“Bye-bye! Thank you,” the baby says.
“I’ll see you again my friend,” Father Urien says as he walks away.
“I didn’t know human babies can talk,” Becky says.
“They can, but human babies have to learn to speak the human language before they can be understood by other humans.”
“Oh, well speaking about babies. How many do you think we’re going to have?”
“How can I know? Why? How many do you want?”
“Maybe twenty or twenty-five.”
“Twenty or twenty-five?!”
“That’s the normal number.”
“No, the normal number is around twelve.”
“Well, I want twenty to twenty-five. Maybe more.”
“Because that’s what I want.”
“I guess I have to give the princess what she wants.”
“Princess? You mean queen.”
“Sure, I do.”
Adventure 7 – What Everyone Wonders About
Because of Ricky’s adventures, the Inverted Light as finally decided to take action against him. Because dozens of people in the town are wishing for an end to their suffering, he opens a fissure in the earth, which swallows the city at an alarming rate. The Reaper of Souls himself appears in the town to reap the souls of the people who try to escape, so none will escape this destruction. Ricky’s pack and his exorcist friends are fighting against the Reaper with swords and prayers alongside brave townsfolk.
As Ricky looks over the destruction he utters, “How am I going to fix this? I might be really over my head this time.”
The Caretaker stands by Ricky and points to the fissure and says, “Destroy the source in there and the hole will close.”
“I don’t know if I can do it.”
“You can. I’ll be with you as you go.”
Ricky is given his knight armor and weapons. He breathes in and out before heading to the fissure. Becky sees him and runs alongside him.
“Where are you going, Ricky?”
“I’m headed towards the fissure. The Caretaker told me that’s how I can stop all of this. This situation is more dangerous than the others. You should stay up here and help the others.”
“For the last time, I’m helping you no matter what the danger is.”
“I guess there’s no arguing with you on that.”
“You’re right about that. I’ll be with you no matter where you go.”
The couple travels down the fissure until they reach the bottom where they see a gray, demonic goat monster with six hands that’s splitting the earth alongside The Inverted Light.
Ricky unsheathes his weapons and points it at him and says, “The Abuser! I knew you had something to do with this!”
“You have no chance of winning against this towering foe, vermin. Tell your ‘Caretaker’ I send my regards,” the Abuser says before leaving through a portal.
“Coward! Becky, I still don’t know if we can handle this.”
“Be brave for the town! Be brave for the pack and our friends! Be brave for me.”
“…Okay. Let’s destroy this demon! For the town! For our loved ones! For the Caretaker!”
The towering goat monster smashes the ground in an attempt to crush the rats as they rush it, but their small size and nimble speed are too fast for them. They climb along its arm and cut it several hundred times. A death by a thousand cuts is their strategy for this demon that’s as tall and big as a house. The two take down one arm each as the demon tries to get them off it but can’t manage. Their strength and size might be small, but their size and speed make up for this. Another two arms fall and now the demon struggles to separate the layers of the earth that begin to crush it. Ricky and Becky cut the other two arms to weaken it, but not cut it off so they have time to escape. The earth begins to reattach itself and crush the demon while the Reaper has disappeared.
“Let’s get out of here Becky!”
“I’m right behind you!”
As the earth begins to come together, it’s obvious to Ricky that Becky can’t run fast enough, so he gets behind her and pushes her ahead. Ricky manages to push her out as they get to the surface, but the earth closes on him before he gets out.
Becky begins to claw at the earth to dig him up. A sword pierces through the ground and Ricky emerges from the ground. Becky hugs him once he stands up.
“I told you something like this would happen,” Ricky says, “I almost died there.”
“Thank the Caretaker you didn’t otherwise this would’ve ended up like Romeo and Juliet.”
“Don’t even think that way. We saved the town, but I’m sure they will be many more adventures.”
“And I’ll be with you through them all.”
Ricky and Becky share a kiss as the pack of rats and townspeople cheer in victory against evil. A victory won by two small rats who are small and weak, but brave and courageous.
A Catholic self-published author that writes to entertain and teach. Writes mostly horror, fantasy, and short story fiction.
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