Dislaimer: I do NOT own Mrs. Briby, Johnaton Brisby or any other related character from 'the secret of NIMH'. I own this story
Nicodemus walked over to his desk, where his big red book was located. He took the feather out of the ink pot, waving at the pot. A yellow smoke erupted from it and followed the pin of the feather. As Nicodemus wrote letters in the air, just above the paper, they appeared on it, in a flash of yellow.
Today, exactly year has passed since our escape from NIMH and much has changed already. After a week of traveling, scavenging for food and clothes to keep us warm, we found a place to live. We stumbled across a farm, owned by the Fitzgibbon Family. After digging under the Rose Bush, we found a great natural cavern, filled with halls and enough room to keep us all, and more if we choose so, safe. But I fear that won't be for long. A Plan is needed.
After the Rats, plus our two mouse companions, The genius, Mr. Horatio Ages and Jonathan Brisby, Savior of the Rats of NIMH, chose me to be leader, I made sure that we all had places to live. We used our intelligence to build, craft and much more. Because Mr. Ages and the bravery of the young Rat Justin, we even have electricity now.
We were all happy. And when I say we, I mean my fellow Rats. The two mice, Mr. Ages and Jonathan felt different. After three months, Mr. Ages was the first to go, establishing himself above ground along the 'normal' mice and other animals who live in the field of Farmer Fitzgibbon. He felt that his intelligence was more of use when used to help others. A fact I agreed with him. Young Jonathan remained with us and still is with us.
But I feel that he can't stay here any longer. Not that I, or any other Rat wish him away. I feel that, like Mr. Ages, he has a destiny above ground. I have checked my mirror many times, too see if I could see a glimpse of this destiny. But all I see is what already had happened. Jonathan's destiny was his part in our escape from NIMH. As much as I try, I can't see much more.
Yesterday, I looked in my mirror and saw something different. A destiny. Not mine, nor Jonathan, or any other from NIMH. I saw a young mouse boy, who looked much like Jonathan. Almost identical. But it wasn't him. The eyes. The eyes were different. I suspect this boy to be Jonathan's son. He was surrounded by many Rats from NIMH, like Justin, young Brutus and others. I surprised me to see them, not in the Cavern like we live now, but above ground, living with other animals in, what seemed to be a town in a valley.
But this vision gave me much questions. What and when is this vision? Who is this boy? Who is the mother. Why wasn't Jonathan with his son? Question that, I fear, I'll never get the answer off.
I have kept this vision from Jonathan and the others, at least, until the time is right. This prophecy, as I suspect it is, must be investigated first. I must know the facts, before I can pass judgment.
As I am writing this chapter in the Rats of NIMH Chronicles, I feel happiness in my old heart, a happiness for Jonathan. I don't know why or for what. I just feel that today will be different for him. A day that might change the destiny of the Rats of NIMH and his forever.
Jonathan deflected a blow from Justin's wooden sword with a chuckle. "You're getting slow, Justin." He joked. "At this rate, you'll never get into the guard, let alone become Captain."
Justin chuckled. "You'll see, Jon." He said, striking again. "I'll become Captain of the Guard. That's my destiny."
"You CURRENT destiny is getting defeated by me …" Jonathan said, hitting Justin's hand with the flat side of his sword, knocking Justin's sword out of his hand. "…again."
Justin chuckled as he shook his painful hand. "Another excellent duel, Jon." Just said, picking up his sword.
Jonathan sighed. The sparring with Justin had stopped his worrying for a while, but now they came back again.
"Something wrong, my friend?" Justin asked, noticing the worry on Jonathan's face.
"I don't know." Jonathan said "I think I'm getting sick of being underground all this time."
"We went above ground not that long ago." Justin said.
"Seven months ago." Jonathan said; "And only to help Horatio with moving his stuff to that old, broken machine he calls a home."
"Okay, okay, I see what's going on." Justin said. "I know what you mean, Jonathan. I sometimes also feel the urge to go outside and just wander about. But then I remember NIMH, and that they could find us if we don't stay low."
Jonathan threw his hands in the air. "NIMH, NIMH, NIMH" he said. "Don't you think that, after a year, they would have stopped searching for us?"
"yeah, like they'll stop searching for 20 rats and 11 mice that escaped from their clutches, by somehow ripping the ventilation from the wall?" Justin asked. "What was YOUR idea, by the way?"
Jonathan sighed again. "I'm a mouse, we live in fields, in the open air, not in caverns like a bunch of ra-ra…"
A mischievous smile came on Justin's face. "Ra-ra …?" he asked with amusement in his voice. "You're not finishing your sentences, dear Jonathan."
"Sorry for the comparison." Jonathan said. "Didn't want to offend you."
"No need for the apology." Justin said. "I know what you mean."
"Is there something troubling you, Jonathan Brisby." An old voice from the shadows said.
Both Rat and mouse jumped up, startled. Justin clutched his heart, a grin on his face. "Nicodemus, please don't sneak up on us like that."
Nicodemus walked from the shadows, leaning on his staff, in the direction of Jonathan. "I'll ask again, Jonathan." He said. "Something wrong, my friend?"
"Nothing, Nicodemus." Jonathan said. "Nothing wrong."
Nicodemus gave Jonathan a long look, his yellow glowing eyes lighting the young mouse's face.
Jonathan sighed. "You heard us talking, didn't you?"
"Every word." Nicodemus said with a smile. "I understand your troubles, Jonathan Brisby, but I'm afraid there's not much I can do."
"I figured out that much, but …" Jonathan said.
"The only thing that I can do, is give you permission to go to the Above world." Nicodemus smiled.
"You mean it?" Jonathan asked.
"You deserve it, friend." Justin said.
"Not more than any other who escaped from NIMH" Jonathan said.
"Don't forget, young Brisby, that it was you who managed us to escape." Nicodemus said. "You are, and always will be, a hero."
"I'm no hero." Jonathan said. "I was just small enough to slip through the wholes and screwing out the nods that held the plate on its place."
"Sometimes …" Nicodemus said. " …that's all what it takes to become a hero."
"Well, I'm off." Jonathan said, eager to go to the outside.
"Wait, Jon." Justin said. "You'd better …change clothes."
Jonathan looked down at himself. Like the other Rats of NIMH, he was dressed like the humans did.
"What's wrong with it?" Jonathan asked.
"Don't you think that you'll attract the attention of the humans dressed like that?" Justin said.
"Young Justin is right, Jonathan." Nicodemus said, turning around and walking back in the direction of his chamber. "Better get dressed in something less …noticeable."
"Okay." Jonathan said. "I'll be back by nighttime."
Jonathan ran to his room and searched in his trunk with clothes. He took a dark blue sleeveless vest and a red cape and headed out.
"Hope that darn cat isn't nearby." Jonathan said, as he peeped out the Rose Bush. He sniffed the air. No cat nearby. Only fresh air, the crops on the field, the roses on the porch and much more.
"This is exactly what I needed." He said to himself. But what was he going to do first. He grinned. Mr. Ages. That was the first thing he would do.
Jonathan ran to the field, in the direction of Mr. Ages' home. Once there, he hopped into the entrance and walked to the door. He stopped when he heard voices. The door opened. He quickly hid in the shadows of the machine. A shrew, wearing a ugly hat and a blue scarf walked out.
"…and I better hope that this will work, Ages." The shrew said.
"Now, now, Mrs. Shrew." Mr. Ages said, clearly annoyed as heck by the shrew. "Just mix this in your food for the next three days and you'll get rid of that nasty rash on your …"
"Will you shut it?" the shrew quickly said. Jonathan had to force every muscle in his body not to chuckle or laugh.
"Good day." The shrew said, turning around and quickly stepping in the direction of the exit.
"Great Jupiter, I rather escape from NIMH again than talking to that person." Mr. Ages said to himself. "Heck, I'll even face Dragon or …"
"How about me?" Jonathan said, stepping out of the shadows.
"JONATHAN BRISBY!" Mr. Ages yelled, clutching his heart. "Don't sneak up to an old mice like that."
Jonathan chuckled. "Who was the shrew?"
"Everyone knows her by 'Auntie Shrew', but I find it very unlikely that THAT person is even wanted as an aunt." Mr. Ages said. "Only that niece of her seems to put up with her antics."
"So, you are a doctor here?" Jonathan asked.
"Not really." Mr. Ages said. "They only come to me if it's really necessary. Not that Mrs. Shrew just could have eaten some natural medicines from the field, but she insisted … Where are my manners, come in, dear boy."
"Gladly." Jonathan said.
After Mr. Ages and Jonathan had shared some stories, gave Mr. Ages Jonathan a questioning look.
"Maybe I should have asked this first." He said. "What brings you to the Above?"
"Nothing really." Jonathan said. "I just HAD to go outside."
"I know what you mean." Mr. Ages said. "So, are you planning to stay in the Above or …"
"I'll be back by nighttime, but I still have the whole day in front of me." Jonathan said, standing up.. "Do you have any pointers?"
"Well, you picked a good day to go outside." Mr. Ages said. "The farmer and his family are gone to the city for the whole day, so they won't bother you. But be careful, that darn cat is still lurking around."
"I'll be careful." Jonathan said, throwing his red cape over his shoulders. "I'll come back before I head back to the Rose Bush."
"Have fun, Jonathan Brisby." Mr. Ages said. "You'll never know what will happen out there, so keep on the lookout."
"I will!" Jonathan yelled as he ran out.
Jonathan loved being outside again, feeling the wind in the air. Sniffing the smell of flowers, the trees, the cat Dragon …Dragon? Jonathan stopped in his tracks and hid in an empty can. He sniffed the air again. Yes, that was the foul stench of Dragon alright. But there was another scent in the air. A familiar scent. The scent from a mouse.
At the time he realized this, he saw a young mouse running across corner of the house, running for her, because Jonathan immediately saw that it was a female, life. He heard the roars of Dragon. He couldn't just stand there. He had to help her.
"In here!" he yelled. "QUICKLY!"
The young mouse, noticing Jonathan and the place he hid in, quickly ran in his direction. She jumped in the can and hid her face in Jonathan's chest.
"Don't let him get me." She said to him. "Please help."
"That what I'm intend to do." Jonathan said. He peeped out the can, looking for the cat. There he was, sniffing around, searching for his little meal that seemed to have escaped. But he would soon have her scent again, and Jonathan, if he didn't act quickly.
Jonathan turned to the mouse. "Stay. Here." He commanded.
The mouse nodded, sitting down and wrapped her arms around her knees, hiding her face in it. She was shaking with fear.
"It will all be alright." Jonathan said with a soft voice.
The mouse looked up, smiled and nodded.
As Jonathan prepared to leave, she grabbed his cape. "WAIT, before you go …what is your name, sir?"
"I'm Jonathan Brisby." The latter said. "And yours?"
"Joanna." She said. "But what are you going to do?"
"Save your life, Joanna." Jonathan said. He was about to leave the can, but stopped and turned to Joanna with a smile. "beautiful name, by the way. Fits with a beautiful mouse."
A blush came on Joanna's face. She was about to say something, as Jonathan jumped out the can and ran in the direction of Dragon.
'Okay, what the heck was that?' He thought to himself. 'You just met the girl and you're already flirting with her? Eugh, I'll figure it out later.'
"Over here, you overgrown fur ball!" he yelled at Dragon. Dragon growled when he saw this new snack and lunged at him, faster than Jonathan expected. Dragon clawed at Jonathan, who just managed to jump away. But Dragon had put his claw in Jonathan's cape, knocking him on the ground. Just as Dragon raised his paw to deliver the final hit, Jonathan threw some sand in his eyes and managed to ran to the river.
"Okay, not the best plan in the world." He said to himself, seeing that he couldn't escape elsewhere and Dragon was gaining on him. He looked over the edge of the deep river and smiled. If he could time it right…
"Getting to slow to catch mice, Dragon!" he yelled at the cat. Dragon roared and lunged at him. At that point, when Dragon was unable to slow down or stop, Jonathan jumped down. The fearsome cat dove after him, and fell in the water, only too find a way out of it a few meters further. Defeated and humiliated, Dragon went back to the house, not showing himself for the rest of the day.
"Oh my god, oh my god." Joanna said in total panic, searching for a sign of life of her savior. "Jonathan …" she said, tears flowing down her cheek. "I …I never got the change to thank you."
"You're very welcome!" Jonathan's voice yelled. "Now please help me up!"
Joanna smiled brightly and scurried to the place Jonathan's voice came from. She looked down the edge and saw him hanging on an extending branch.
"JONATHAN!" she happily yelled. "H-how can I help?"
"Some rope would be grand." Jonathan said with a smile. "This branch won't hold me forever."
"R-rope …okay." She said. She ran to the farm and got a piece of string. She ran back to the cliff. She suddenly stopped. She started to feel lightheaded. She shook it off. Jonathan needed her.
"Here, grab on." She yelled, throwing the string down.
Jonathan grabbed the string and Joanna pulled him up, huffing and puffing as she did.
"Thank you, Joanna." Jonathan said, catching his breath. "Joanna?" He gasped when he saw that she laid motionless on the ground. He quickly checked for wounds, but noticed that she was still breathing, only unconscious.
"Mr. Ages. Mr. Ages will know what to do." Jonathan said, picking her up.
He quickly made his way to Mr. Ages home.
"Mr. Ages!" he yelled as he entered the mouse's home. "Horatio!"
"Great Jupiter, what's …" he said. He saw Joanna in Jonathan's arms. "Why is she here?"
"I saved her from Dragon." Jonathan explained. "After that, she fainted."
"Okay, let me see." Mr. Ages said, bending over her.
"So, what happened to her?" Jonathan asked concerned.
"Just too much excitement for her to handle." Mr. Ages said. "She'll be alright. Just let her sleep for a while."