I.

The pantry room was stuffy and thick with odors. Django noticed this right away, but the stale smell started to lessen a bit as he moved closer to the back of the small building. Not much attracted the rats in his colony anymore to the city dump, he had to wonder why his less-then-successful son would spend time in one when food was readily available for him.

Determined, the father rat scurried down into a stagnant yet some aroma-filled opening. It turned out that there was an underground basement to the pantry and the further the father rat went the stronger the bittersweet smell grew. Dark walls and dripping pipes lined each side of him as he scurried down a rusted piece of sewer line to where he saw Emile below.

Long stretches of pipes crisscrossed everywhere at the top of the earth. Django watched from above as his son squeezed himself into a wine bottle lying on a lower plateau of old pipelines. The rat then reached his arm out the top of the spout for a white piece of thread.

A fizzle of wine from the dark ceiling foamed down as the bottle fell and collided with the one Emile was inside. The carbonation spewed forth and propelled him into a large metal opening. Django gasped and scurried down to where the pipe that had been full was laced with the white string. He ran his finger along the inside and licked his finger to get a taste.

"Huh… Catawba."

Django looked down at the long slope of what he now saw was a tunnel constructed only of old cans. The rat had to know what his son was up to once and for all. He took picked the green bottle up in his arms and squeezed his huge body inside the spout without ease.

Once he was inside, Django took a breath then proceeded to turn himself around and roll towards the opening. He braced himself against the glass walls of the bottle and made it jump up once. One more roll around and the rat had the spout positioned for the can trail.

"All right… here's goes nothing."

The rat hopped forward and felt himself tilt downwards.

A slippery slope of dark red wine acted as a water slide as it caused him to ride along in a nearly straight line down further into the basement. What Django soon found out was that it was much deeper then a basement. He quickly assumed that he was far enough along in the this underground chamber that he could be near the new Italian restaurant when the rat felt himself tumble down a final drop, become airborne momentarily and end with a smash.

Dripping from head-to-toe in the tasteless substance, Django stood to gather his bearings.

Emile had apparently not head him as he was further down in a small, partially lit room.

"What?" Django said in disbelief, moving towards the end of these pipelines.

To be continued…