The Cheese Smorgasbord- A Yuletide Story by Grandma Glasses
“Cats will look away if you give him enough salmon, except when he prefers reindeers.”– The Swedish Chef is in the House
It’s been years the Rat Kingdom has been in shambles. The RatKing’s Castle badly needs repair. One can see doors,windows,floors and roofs falling apart. And the Rat Builders are trying to keep its at it’s glorious and grandest best. Days of summer and winter they work their whiskers, shuffling feet and tails to keep walls in place.
Unknown to many is a Rat Builder named D’ratla who has plans otherwise. He hides in the darkest corner watching others toil and labor. He moves stealthily, away from the wind and the sun. He scurries like a noble rat in a pandemic stance. He hordes cheese like an expert amidst an epidemic of shortage. Behind everyone’s back, he stocks his larder with cheddar, camembert, brie and stilton. But he wanted more. He has evil plans.
It’s known to all ratfolks that across the Rat Kingdom is The Big Den. And there’s been a story going around for many generations that in The Big Den lives Lon the Lokatt, a distant cousin of the Cheshire cat from Alice Wonderland. But the Lokatt is meaner, stronger and bigger. His reputation around the community is unparalleled. His last known ancestors were from Greater Hälsingland, survived many traps set by Vikings and priced by royalty for their fur. He is an honorary lifetime member of the Federacion Internationale Feline. He earned his medal for the Highest and Longest scratch record in the Great Book of Nine Lives, and now considered one of the protected species of wild felines.
It was on that cloudy morning when Lon The Lokatt was awakened by a strange sound. Lon’s keen ears caught a small squeaky sound. That was the day Lon The Lokatt first discovered D’ratla.
“It’s that strange sound again. But there is no one in the room.”
He propped his ears and the sound seems to be coming from the big blue vase. Then he heard the squeaky sound again. Suddenly Lon saw a small hairy creature jump out of the vase. He seemed preoccupied to notice Lon watching him from the top of the grandfather clock.
“I will get the biggest and most expensive pule in the Rat Kingdom even if it means crossing The Big Den,” he squeaked loudly to himself, unaware that some one is watching him from a distance.
As days and months went by, Lon became familiar with D’ratla’s activities. Everyday he saw how D’ratla carries small bits of cheese in the vase. But lately Lon noticed D’ratla has been moving more and dragging bigger chunks of cheese.
From his cozy place high on the grandfather clock, Lon became a silent observer of D’ratla’s sneaky ways. He tried to ignore the squeaky sounds. It’s been quite some time since he last hunted small creatures. But every day since he saw D’ratla jump out of the vase, this furry horder started to get on his nerves. And he cannot let this one roam The Big Den.
The Pule cheese is the world’s most expensive and rare cheese. The RatKing keeps a rare collection in his vault, a symbol of friendship and loyalty between the RatKing and the Balkan Donkey Prince.
So without wasting a second, he growled. Without warning but only a flared face, tufted ears and tail tipped high, Lon stretched and swiftly leaped on the floor. With his preying instinct and feline accuracy he landed on D’ratla. Lon can feel D’ratla wincing and writhing, trying to fight back. But Lon’s claws are far bigger and his fangs sharper.
Then D’ratla sensing his defeat, closed his eyes and gave a faint squeak.
Lon pinned D’ratla. He looked at him and hissed a victory. “This should keep you warned. I don’t go for cheese. I’ve always been on a reindeer diet.”