Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Tunnel Rat

The rat looked up as he heard the tube train clattering up the tunnel.
“I’m getting old now,” he thought. “That noise ain’t doing me no good.”
He continued gnawing on a long juicy snake he’d found lying away from the wall.
“That’s funny,” he had thought. “Don’t get many of these down here normally.”
The track rattled as the train approached, knocking his tail off the metal.
“I’m too old for this game. All this noise. I need some peace and quiet. I fancy a move to the country. Maybe I’ll try St Albans.”
He nibbled a bit more of the leathery snake, which hummed with the vibration of the oncoming train.
“Cor, I need this. I haven’t had any protein for days.”
The noise was deafening. The train was almost upon him.
“Rats!” he thought. “I’ll have to leave it till later. That bloody Benedict will probably get it.”
If he didn’t leave it now he’d be in danger of getting crushed. But he was still getting through the tough skin; a few more nibbles and he’d get into the meat.
The wind was getting right up now, the screaming of the wheels as the train braked for the corner shimmered in the air.
A nibble, a nibble, another nibble. The lights of the train shone off the wall from around the corner.
“I can see the meat,” thought the rat, eyes gleaming in the new light. He sunk his teeth deep into the electric cable. The arc of the electricity sent him flying, fur burning, straight into the path of the tube train. The last thing the driver saw before the train came to a sudden halt and the lights went out was a flaming rodent splattered across his windscreen, cooked through, practically falling off the bone, the crazed gleam in his eyes still evident to the shocked driver.
Not as shocked as the rat though, obviously.