The rat sniffs and shuffles through the wall. Dips and dodges wires dust and mold, his claws tick the hard wood. Pink panther insulation posters stretching out their unloving fingers to the far frame. The rat notices none of it. His nose leads the way to where the mess of the underground and forgotten spaces of home meets the 10,000 watt sun and sterile vacuumed carpet. He observes from the shadows. Two moon lusting eyes glow in admiration of tonight’s crumbs. He remembers where the child sits and thanks him for his clumsy and youthful hands. Food for his family fall from his fat grip.
When the time is right he shows his ugly naked fur to the bland light and makes sure to make a brief appearance. He scatters his legs and knows the carpet will catch his feet. Hugging the wall he hopes to go unnoticed by the emptiness of the kitchen. He breaks stride and ends up at a bouquet of bread. Eyes alive with gold his greed corrupts his once meticulous mind and he plants himself in heaven. Nibble nibble nibble he samples the spread. All focus on his belly he drifts into a state of numb sense and looses his anchor. Afloat in a bliss, he packs his cheeks and surrenders to the splendors of food. His fate approaches quietly and curious.
A creak in the floorboard alarms the rat and he turns to face a giant. A clumsy 2 foot tall four-legged beast with a face as fat as his own and a grin ignorance. He can recognize a pair of eyes and stares into an inexperienced soul. Silence so quiet he can hear the beast’s breathe. A stillness so frozen his legs shiver and his spine tighten. Holding crumbs that were once the giant’s he drops his fare out of respect. Still they stand locked in a world of misunderstanding. The rat fears for his life, the child sees a small puppy. A squeal of joy spurts from its mouth and the rat knows he’s free. He retraces his steps around the dazed and joyful animal and snakes back into the wall. He lives again.