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Tattered & Torn

It was nighttime in London, & the year was 1894. In the main chambers of a certain sewer lair, every thug had gathered around to watch a flogging.

Terry & Thomas, the two tough twin brothers who worked as thugs for the World's Greatest Criminal Mind, grinned evilly & maliciously as they pinned a small boy down to the ground.

The boy was about 2 years old. He had light-tan fur, pale yellow eyes, whiskers, a long pink tail, & a pink nose. He wore nothing but a white Egyptian-type kilt. Daniel, the poor slave boy who worked for Mouses Fiennes, screamed in fright as he was being held down. He kicked his legs, & squirmed around, trying to break himself free. But the thugs who worked for the crime lord only passed silent, malicious stares at him. Stares that showed that they did not care for the little boy, did not want to help him...

Just then, a tall, dark figure emerged from the crowd. He was a young rat, about 13 years old (despite his very large size). He wore a black overcoat, black trousers, a red opera cape, a purple-&-orange cravat, white gloves, & black shoes that were much too small for his feet. He had a five o'clock shadow, cold golden eyes, a large pink rat's tail, a prominent pink nose, thick black eyebrows, sharp white teeth, pink-&-brown fur, a stocky build, & long limbs.

Daniel quivered as his eyes met those of Professor Ratigan, who smiled coldly at him, his teeth forming an unloving grin.

"Give me the whip," Daniel heard the rat order.

A thug named Jaywalk James went away for a moment, & came back, clutching a scourge in his paw.

With an evil chuckle, Ratigan took the whip, & started to gently caress the sharp point, amazingly being able to keep from hurting himself.

As he played with the deadly rope, Professor Ratigan let out an airy sigh. "Ahhh...my dear...Daniel, was it? You've done a very naughty thing today."

Daniel shuddered as he saw Ratigan crack the whip on the floor, dangerously close to his little body.

"You drank out of my glass, didn't you?"

When Daniel didn't answer, Ratigan's arrogant smile turned into a furious frown. "DID YOU DRINK OUT OF MY CHAMPAGNE GLASS OR NOT!"

The frightened Daniel quickly nodded "yes". Ratigan's face sported a "sweet" smile once again.

Circling the small slave boy, Ratigan's whip trailed the ground as the rat rogue mused lightly, "And you know how Uncle Ratigan doesn't like it when other people touch his things...without his permission!"

Daniel flinched as Ratigan cracked the whip close to his little round head.

"And when people don't ask before using my things...they are to be PUNISHED!"

Ratigan's angry, distorted face quickly came in contact with Daniel's frightened one.

The way Daniel shuddered...the way he whimpered in fear...the way his eyes pleaded for mercy...it gave Ratigan a feeling of great power...

And as little Daniel started to cry tears of fright, Ratigan felt a burning sensation in his body. He felt a tremendous high, almost as if he were on drugs...

Soon, Ratigan found a way to take out his anger. He began to whip Daniel with his flogging scourge.

And with each sting of the whip, Daniel let out a scream of pain.

"STOP! You're hurting him!"

But Ratigan didn't stop. He kept flogging Daniel until blood starting oozing everywhere...

"Damn it, leave him alone!" 39-year-old John Robertson growled in righteous rage as he rushed over to Ratigan & tried to pry the scourge out of his gloved hand.

Eventually, John was finally able to get the whip. He then proceeded to tear it apart, stomp on it with his brown shoe, & cover it with ash from his cigar.

Ratigan's face went up in shock, before furrowing in anger. How DARE a thug think he can foil my insidious punishment against that scurvy servant boy?

Ratigan then grabbed John by the throat, but before he could strangle the red-wearing thug, a high-pitched voice cried, "STOP!"

A 25-year-old bright-green lizard & a 31-year-old mouse in a striped shirt immediately came up to Ratigan, & managed to break John free from his clawed clutches. After John dusted his clothes, the Goodie Gang went over to Daniel & inspected him.

Daniel was huddled in a fetal position, shuddering as he wept quiet sobs. He was covered in blood from head to toe, & fresh scratches were beginning to ooze with blood.

As Bill The Lizard looked at the little slave boy with compassion in his green eyes, he picked the boy up in his arms, & held him gingerly as he tried to comfort him.

"What do we do now?" Max Henshaw asked in his whiny Cockney accent.

Bill's eyes slitted in determination. "Bring him to the infirmary!" he ordered in a low voice.

Max, Bill, & John then proceeded to make their way to the nearest barrel, leaving all the bad thugs behind to stare angrily at them...

As soon as the Goodie Gang got to Ratigan's infirmary, they shut the door, making sure to lock it.

Bill then lit two candles, & got out a small bag of first aid supplies.

Sitting in a wooden washtub, little Daniel coughed & sputtered as Max poured a bucket of water over him.

Daniel then gasped as he saw his blood streaming down his body, & into the water, making it turn scarlet...

"Don't worry, Daniel," Max said gently with a smile as he washed Daniel's bloodied body. "It'll be over soon enough."

And Max wasn't far from right. Within minutes, Daniel was cleaned up, & tucked into a small hospital bed.

As he tucked Daniel cozily under the blankets, Max cooed, "Now, then, Daniel, we'll just get you some-" Suddenly Max paused. His eyes began to widen...

Little Daniel, who had not yet learned to talk, began to cry tears of fright...& pain.

Bill went over to Max, & shook him violently as he asked, "What's wrong, Max?"

Max pointed to Daniel's left ear. It was beginning to turn green.

"Oh, Jesus, he has gangrene on his ear!" Bill quivered in fear. "We'll have to cut it off..."

"Daniel, lad, hold still, please!" John commanded gently as he & Max tried to keep Daniel from moving.

When Daniel began to settle down, Bill put the knife to his ear...

Daniel began to shriek in fright again, & started to cower in fear.

As he watched the frightened boy cling tightly to Max, Bill shrugged as he lamented, "It's no use, guys! The tyke won't stay still!"

"He's frightened, Bill," John realized. "We should give him some gas, so he'll be numbed during the amputation."

Max immediately took out his handkerchief, & dunked it in a small cup of chloroform. Putting it to Daniel's nose, Max began to cry tears of compassion as he saw the little boy breathe the gas & fall asleep.

When Daniel was finally knocked out, John & Max gingerly held Daniel & began to pet him soothingly.

Bill took the knife again, & once more put it to Daniel's rapidly-greening ear. With a gulp, Bill whispered sadly, "I'll make this quick..."

With a slice of the knife, Daniel's bloodied ear fell to the wooden floor.

Max saw the blood trickling out of Daniel's temple. Bill managed to put on a large antiseptic-covered bandage on the oozing wound, but it was no use. Max had already seen the gory display.

Max immediately went over to a corner, & John & Bill winced in disgust as Max proceeded to vomit violently.

That night, as Bill & Max continued to tend to the still-sleeping Daniel, John wrote in his diary on a desk lit by candlelight...

From the diary of John Robertson-

January 19, 1894

We had a terrible accident today at the hideout - Bill, Max, & I were trying to stop Ratigan from "disciplining" our new "servant boy" - have I told you about him? His name is Daniel, & he's a sweet little chap. But he's always getting mistreated by Ratigan, he's sick, he's hurt, he's hungry, he's constantly having health problems. Poor lad - I'd risk my neck to keep Daniel safe from his cruel master...even give up my life to Felicia.

Anyway, about the accident - Terry & Thomas were pinning Daniel to the floor. The boy was screaming, while Ratigan was flogging him. Apparently, Daniel had drunken out of Ratigan's champagne glass, & we all know we're not allowed to touch Ratigan's things without asking him. The greedy asshole was lashing out at Daniel, & he didn't even give a damn that the boy was crying! Ratigan ended up cutting open Daniel's head! It was so disgusting to see all that blood... Bill tried to fix Daniel, but he couldn't save the boy's ear. It was a terrible sight to see Daniel crying again while Bill placed the knife on his temple...

I don't want Daniel to go through this pain, this torture, again. I want him to be free...

Maybe some heavenly messenger will come & rescue him...

Well, I gotta go for now. I'm feeling awful tired.

Your dear friend, John

After signing his name, John gingerly shut the journal, & blew out that candle as he laid his head on his arms, & drifted off to a slumber full of disturbing dreams... Most of them...were about Daniel.