Never Say Die – A Tale about a House Rat (Chapter 6 – The Red Ants Help to Chase Away the Toads)

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Ruby decides to return to the rat colony now. He climbs down the drain cover on the street side and descends to the sewer bank. Suddenly, he notices someone he knows lying motionless on the sewer bank. Its Roxy! The water from the ceiling of the sewer keeps dripping onto the ferret. He goes over, sniffs the body and says, “Aaa… My good friend is dead. I’ll bring this sad news to his wife.”

Then, he plucks some furs from different places of his body and puts them on his friend as a way of burying him. In the sewer, around this time, there are a lot of toads and the noises that they make fill the whole area. Ruby hurriedly climbs up a network of pipes and comes out at the kitchen.

The first thing he does is to go to the ferret’s wife and tells her what he just discovered. He tells Nelly, “I was under the sewer today running in a hurry on my way home when I saw your husband fell dead. I sniff at it to confirm he is dead and I found a stale smell coming from it. And so I hurry to come back to tell you the news. You have to take Cole (raccoon) to move the body up to the ground surface otherwise it will be too heavy for you to carry alone.”

Nelly becomes sad and her response is, “Oh, my poor Roxy. But who will watch over the babies?”

Ruby replies, “Tola can help to look after your little ones. He and his sister (Lola) can guard the nest for one evening. It will be about time when we’re back. There are gonna be lots of toads in the sewer in this season of the year. We must be careful when traveling through the area.”

Together, they go to Tola the giant tortoise. Nelly asks, “Tola, can you help to babysit my four young pups. I need to go down into the sewer to relocate Roxy’s poor body up to the surface. Sobbing.”

Tola is a kind tortoise and he says, “We will watch over the young ones. No worry.”

Next, they go to Cole, the raccoon and asks for his help. Nelly asks, “Cole, we need your help to move Roxy’s decaying body to the ground surface. Can you lend us a hand?

Cole is shocked to hear about it and he asks, “Roxy is dead? How did it… Where is his body?”

Ruby replies, “Roxy was found dead in the drain located just below Larson Street near to Mama Joe Bakery.”

Cole is glad to help them and he says, “Count me in.”

Ruby, Nelly, and Cole climb down the sewer through a drain that has a wide pipe opening. When they are near the sewer river, one toad spots on them. The toad becomes interested to eat the rat and he says, “Oh look! Its a mouse. I will go over there to say hi and gobble it up.”

Ruby becomes panic when he sees a toad hopping towards him with the tongue sticking out constantly. Ruby cries, “Oh look, a toad.” His natural instinct pushes him to run and find a place to hide. Ruby fights back by attacking the toad with his teeth.

The toads in the sewer river notice that their pal is losing and one of them cried, “What’s happened to our pal? I’m going up to see what I can do.” Another toad says, “I am going up with you.”

The toad dies after getting bitten by Ruby a few times. Now, the toads in the river are aroused. One toad says, “Look our friend is dead. We aren’t going to sit here and do nothing about it, right?” The other toad asks, “What do you suggest?” The first toad replies, “We’ll kill the rat and his family and gobble up every member in his family. Who is with me?” The  toads in the river agree to follow the suggestion of the first toad and they start to make a lot of noises in the sewer river.

The toads hop up onto the sewer bank to chase after the raccoon and ferret. Cole tells Nelly, “Oh look! A herd of toads is after us.” He continues, “You run over there. I’ll catch up with you later.”

Some of the big red ants heard the toads making lots of noises and one of them (Mitchie) says to another ant (Lina), “Did you hear that noise? What’s the noise. Ssh.” Then, she says, “Let me ask the watch guard.” She goes to the watch guard for the red ants nest and asks, “Archie, What’s the lookout? What can you see?”

Archie rolls two leaves and puts a drop of water in each. When he sees through the binocular, he reports back,” Mayhem on the bank.”

Mitchie asks, “What happened?”

Archie reports, “Lots of toads are jumping everywhere and a raccoon, rat and ferret are running fast, fast and fast to escape their lives.”

Mitchie says, “Let me see.”

From the binocular, she could see the situation clearly. She says, “There’s so many toads squeezing in between each other. O, they are chasing after a rat, raccoon and a ferret.

O’lley heard what she said and asks, “A rat? Can you describe him?”

Mitchie replies, “You can take a look.”

O’lley sees through the binocular and recognizes that it was the same rat he followed. He cries, “It was that guy from the street that sells bread.We’ve eaten that wafer roll and it tastes delicious. It was him who let us carry back the whole wafer roll.”

Job asks, “Should we help him?”

O’lley says, “Why not?”

Around this time, Commander Cooks comes and he notices the ants are not doing their work. He scolds them,”What’s the matter? Why are you loitering about? Get back to work.”

O’lley explains, “Sir, there is a rat that needs our help. Our watch guard has confirmed that multitude of toads are attacking the three poor innocent creatures. We have to help him. If we don’t, I’m afraid they wouldn’t make it.”

Barney says, “We’ve gotta help him.”

Karl explains why they should help them, “He’s help us once.”

Commander Cooks says, “I can see that. We’ll send out the troop.”

Commander Cooks asks, “How many strong men do we have? Noah, count the warriors.”

Noah goes in between the fighting ants to number them. Then, he goes back to the commander and reports, “I have found 10,375 strong healthy warriors and counting.”

Commander Cooks instructs him, “Bring 103 fierce fighting ants and march on till you can see the toad eyes big like a, like a swat of flies become down under unmercifully in the cruel oppressor’s hand.

Slowly march on and sing the battle day song as you boldly head into war with the frogs in a dark sullen warrior mood. Wait till they are approximately 0.1m in distance, close enough to swat you with their tongues; then, shout the battle cry and attack the frogs.”

Noah leads the troop out to attack the toads. In a motivating spirit, he tells the soldiers, “Dear comrades, we will fight for our friend. March on. Be brave. Never lose. Be brave. Come on. If we lose, we will never be able to go back. If we win the battle, we will have dead toads to carry back. Are you ready to go into war now?”

One of the soldiers asks, “Er, what if we get squashed?”

Noah replies, “No worry on that. Brave ants will never get squashed.”

Another soldier asks, “What if we get eaten by the tongues.”

Noah encourages the soldiers, “Young comrades. Pluck up your courage. Be brave don’t need to call for mama. If we win the battle, each of you shall get a reward.

Another soldier replies, “No need to call for mama? We only have a queen.”

The rats march to the battle with the toads and they sing this song:

 

Off we go. Off we go to yet another battle.

The day of the battle is long but we shall not be faint.

We will fight with our bravery till the end.

And the day our queen sees us win the battle she will be happy.

Fight and fight. We’ll fight till we vanquish our foes.

No more fear. Be brave. Be brave. Be brave.

We’ll win the battle. We’ll win. We’ll win. We’ll win.

And we’ll chase them. We’ll chase them. We’ll chase them.

They’ll run. They’ll run. They’ll run. They’ll run.

Ha! The battle will be easy to win

Hu! We will carry back our trophy – the toad

Hui! The battle day will not be tough

Ha! We’ll smile victoriously at our enemies

And we’ll sing, Hey, we have the victory.

We’ll march on. We’ll march. We’ll march.

We’ll sing victory. Victory. Victory.

We’ll keep going. Keep going. Keep going.

 

Noah sounds the battlecry, “Go. Aaaaa. March into the battlefield. Charge.”

The red warrior ants charge forward as soon as they hear their commander gives the battle cry. They climb onto the toads and use their pincers to sting them.

One toad cries in pain, “Ouch!”

Another cries, “Yawch!”

“There are reddies all over my body.”

There goes another toad that moans from the suffering that the red ants had inflicted on him.

“The reddies has got on my skin.”

This is from another toad who has been taught a lesson by the red ants.

A toad shouts, “Noooo!” as he runs away with the rest.

The rest of toads start to run away after learning that those in the front have been stung severely by the red ants. The toads are telling one another to run and escape,

“Run!”

“Run!”

“Run!”

“Run!”

“Run!”

The last toad that is running cries, “O, my toes!” as the red ants have bitten his webbed toe. He heads to the sewer river and jumps in.

Meanwhile, Ruby, Cole and Nelly have managed to reach the bank where Roxy is lying unconscious. Ruby says, “Thank heaven we’re safe now. Quick, lift him up. Run on to the steps.” Cole and Nelly use one hand to lift Roxy together and slowly make their way towards the sewer ladder. Ruby stays behind as Commander Cooks wants to meet with him.

Nelly feels exhausted having been chased around by the toads. She is having problem climbing the ladder. Cole encourages her, “Up, one, two, three, four.”

When they reach the fourth step, Cole tries to motivate her again, “Can you go higher? Try harder. Try harder.”

Then, he says to himself, “I am almost out of breath. We must try. We must continue. For the sake of this smelly drain. I have to go up, up, up.”

Cole says, “One more step and we’re there.”

Cole and Nelly climb up another step and reach the top of the ladder but they now face another problem. The sewer cover is locked! Cole tries with all his strengths to push the cover but it just won’t move. He tells Nelly, “We need help to lift the heavy metal cover.”

He sees the water dripping down from the sewer and he suddenly has an idea. That’s it! All he needs to do is to spit the water far to get someone’s attention. He fills his mouth with some of the sewer water and swishes it around from the right cheek to left cheek.

When he swishes the water in the second round, he spits the water and the water flies up high over the sewer cover and lands on a dog nearby. The dog starts barking. He turns around to see who splashes the water on him. However, he soon loses interest and wander away. The owner reprimands his dog, “Jake, be quiet!”

Cole did not give up. He tries again and this time, the dog comes up to the sewer cover. Cole whistles, “PHUUUUUWIT”. Then, he says in a persuasive voice, “Come on, come on, come on here.” The dog keeps barking when he sees that there’s someone down the sewer that needs help. The dog’s persistent barking catches the attention of the people on the street.

One man asks, “What happened?”

Another man who is curious about the situation asks, “What is it?”

A woman on the street cries, “Poor creature.”

In just a few minutes, a throng of people surrounds the area. Someone from the crowd asks, “What’s wrong?”

Finally, someone takes the initiative to ask, “What can we do about it?”

He gets a reply from another passerby, “Somebody please remove the manhole.”

A volunteer says, “I’ll do it.” He notices that the sewer cover is locked and starts to ask for tools, “The tools. Where are the tools?”

Someone hands him the tools, “Here you go.”

The volunteer replies, “I need one person to help me lift the cover.”

The man who just handed him the tool says, “I’ll do it.”

The first volunteer says, “Let’s pull together. One – Two – Three.” When he says three, the sewer cover still can’t be lifted so he says, “Pull harder. We’re close to removing the cover. Aaa.” Finally, the sewer cover is lifted!

They help the raccoon and ferrets out of the sewer hole. Then, someone says, “Call the animal rescue center.”

Once they are out of the manhole, they want to get away as far away from the human as they can. Cole knows Nelly is too tired to run and someone will have to carry Roxy. He decides he will carry both of them on his back. He bends over to lift Roxy onto his back. After that, he says to Nelly, “Jump on my back.” Nelly climbs onto the raccoon and the raccoon and rat run swiftly and disappear from the human crowd.

— A Moment Ago —

Down in the sewer, the red ants have marched over to the rat from the other side of the bank as the commander wants to talk to him.

Ruby expresses his gratitude, “My friend, thank you.”

Commander Cooks stands up straight and uses one of his 6 legs to shake hand with Ruby. Ruby smells something delicious. He sniffs the air and then he says, “Smells like dewberry muffin.”

Commander Cooks whistles, “PHUUUUUWIT.” Right away, another group of red ants march over with a red dewberry muffin.

Commander Cooks says to Ruby, “Here is a piece of cake. Treat it as a return favor for letting us have that chocolate wafer roll.”

Ruby replies, “I just want to say thank you friend. Its delicious.”

Commander Cooks say, “We’ll see you around the corner next time.”

Commander Cooks directs the soldiers, “Turn around. March on.” The soldier ants turn around and sing this song as they march back to their home:

 

March. And march. We march on. We march on. We march on.

Hey We’ll march we’ll march we’ll march

We’ll keep marching. We’ll keep marching. We’ll keep marching

 

Meanwhile, Cole has been calling Ruby to come up the sewer fast.

Cole shouts, “Ruby, better hurry up, there are lots of human here.”

Ruby replies, “Coming.” After the ants marched away, he climbs up the steps and exits the manhole.

Ruby feels panic and nervous when he sees so many people and says, “So many human. What am I going to do?”

Chapters Navigation

Chapter 1 – Almost Drown in a Tortellini Soup

Chapter 2 – Ruby’s Mother Killed in a Bicycle Accident

Chapter 3 – Ruby’s Encounter with the Red Ants

Chapter 4 – O’lley Follows Ruby

Chapter 5 – Ruby Lets the Red Ants Have the Chocolate Wafer Roll

Chapter 6 – The Red Ants Help to Chase Away the Toads

Chapter 7 – Roxy is Alive

Chapter 8 – The Rats Moving House

Chapter 9 – The Rats Steals a Barge and Monster Truck

Chapter 10 – The Toads is After the Rats Again

Chapter 11 – The Rats Found Their Home at a New Island

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