Chapter 1: The Outsider
It was a hot day in Thorn Valley and Justin walked along the path. He stopped in the center of town and looked at the statue of Jonathan Brisby and his son Timothy. Not long ago had Timmy fulfilled his destiny. As far as Justin could tell, only a year had past.
It was midday, but the sun was lost behind a maze of black clouds. He knew it was going to rain any minute so he hurried to the main building. There he found Mr. Ages, Jenny, and Timmy waiting for him.
" Your late." said Timmy.
" I know. I stopped to look at the statue of two men who are the envy of all the town." Justin said with a laugh.
" Ha Ha." said Timmy.
" Come we have business to discuss." said Mr. Ages.
They sat down in a large council room with many others.
" We need to figure out why there have been so many reports of an outsider. Could there really be one?" asked Mr. Ages.
" An outsider?" asked Jenny.
" We don't really like outsider here." Said Justin.
The meeting went on and on and finally ended at dark. As Justin walked home he saw the shadow he had seen every night that week. He went inside and went to sleep. He told his friend Brutus about it and that night he followed Justin home. They both saw the shadow at the same time. Brutus saw a tall, dark figure moving near him. He jumped on it.
The figure struggled and Brutus tore something from its neck. By then Justin was there and was asking who the person was.
" Can't say. One day you'll know." came a female voice, then she punched Brutus and ran away.
Brutus opened his hand and saw that he had a necklace. It was silver with the picture of a compass on it. Inscribed on the back was:
South by South by South
The way the rats run
Where Mrs. Brisby raised
The next day they took it to Mr. Ages.
" This is strange," he said.
" If I'm right then the girl who owns this will come looking for it." said Justin.
" How do you know?" asked Mr. Ages.
" She put up a good fight for it." said Brutus rubbing his stomach.
Justin was right. They ambushed her in the main hall. The girl grabbed the necklace and turned to leave when Justin jumped in front of her.
" Justin!" she cried and covered her mouth.
Although the hood still hid her face Justin could tell she was shocked she had said it.
" How did she know my name?" he thought.
The girl turned again and saw Brutus. Then again to see Timmy. She looked up and Justin saw a flash of her emerald green eyes. She shoots something from her wrist and swung other Justin. She then ran for the door. She was almost there when Jenny jumped in front of her. She stepped back and hit Justin. He tied her up and led her in front of the council. Then Justin removed her hood.
They all starred at a female rat with piercing emerald green eyes, auburn-brown hair, and light brown fur.
" What do you want from me?" she asked.
" Your name for starters." said Justin.
" Janel." she said.
" Why were you following me?" asked Justin.
" Because a friend wanted me to ask you for help." she said.
" Who?" asked Mr. Ages.
" I can't say. All I can tell you is that it's someone you know from N.I.M.H." she said.
" N.I.M.H.!" they all cried.
" That place was destroyed. How do you know about it?" asked Mr. Ages.
" I was there," she said.
" You were there!" asked Justin.
" Yes. Long before any of you came. I was given the same things you were. And more." she said looking away at the thought.
" Can you take us to this person?" asked Justin.
" Of course." she said.
They walked outside and Justin untied her. She rubbed her wrists and thanked him. She looked at the statue and walked over to it.
" What is it?" asked Justin.
" Why have you built a statue of Jonathan. Normally people don't build statue until their dead," she said.
" You mean you don't know?" asked Mr. Ages.
" He died while he was trying to drug a cat," said Justin.
" No!" she cried and turned to run.
" Where are you going?" asked Justin.
" If he's dead then he won't be where I lift him!" she said.
" What!" cried the others.
" Are you saying Jonathan is alive?" asked Justin as he ran after her.
" If he's were I left him he is!" she cried over her shoulder.
They ran off as the others just stood there in shock. Janel ran in front of Justin the whole time.
" She's fast!" he thought to himself.
They ran on and on. Justin was getting very tired, but when he looked up he saw she wasn't. Then she stopped. She had stopped so suddenly that Justin almost ran into her. She whistled and then all was silent.
" Jump." she said and they did.
When Justin came down he did not feel the hard ground under his feet, but the softness of crow feathers.
" Jeremy!" he cried.
" Hi Justin, I see you meet Janel." he laughed and zoomed through the clouds.
" How do you Jeremy?" asked Justin.
" I had to save him from some string." she laughed, " He's the one who told me about Thorn Valley."
" Jeremy! You know your not supposed to speak about Thorn Valley!" cried Justin.
" Ya but Janel is special. She wanted to take her friend to his family, you know Timmy and Mrs. B. and...." as Jeremy carried on Janel looked at Justin.
" Jonathan has said a lot about you. " she said.
" Has he?" asked Justin still a little unsure.
" Yes, you and Nicodimus. I haven't seen him in a long time." she said.
" He's died," said Justin sadly.
" Sorry to hear that. He was a good friend," she said.
Before Justin could ask his next question they were heading downward. They stopped in front of a small bush and jumped to the ground.
" Thanks Jeremy." she smiled.
" No prob. Miss Janel." he smiled.
" Here for your trouble." she said and handed him something.
" A sparkly!" he cried and thanked Janel before he flew off.
" So where are we?" asked Justin.
" Welcome to Crescent Valley." she smiled and pulled on a branch to reveal what lay ahead.
Chapter 2: An Old Friend in Crescent Valley
A door opened in the bush and Justin starred at the site before him. It looked like Thorn Valley. It had tree's here and there and a stream, the same that ran through Thorn Valley. Rats and mice walked in and out of building made of what looked like brick and cement. There were rats and mice everywhere and they were walking and talking as friends.
" What is this place?" asked Justin as he walked next to Janel do the street.
Everyone around them greeted them and didn't seem surprised to see Justin.
" This is a place where our dreams came true. This is Crescent Valley," she said as they walked up the stairs of a large building.
When they opened the door several people ran up to them. One was a small mouse with brown fur and wearing a green shirt. Another was a large rat with black fur and a white shirt. Janel talked to them as Justin looked around. The building was obviously the meeting hall. The walls were made of brick and the ceiling was made of something he had not seen before.
Then Janel grabbed his arm and pulled him into another room where the council sat.
" Guys, guess who I found!" she said happily.
" Justin!" they cried.
" Yup, that’s Justin." she said as she walked to her seat.
" We haven't seen you in ages." said a mouse.
" How is everything at Thorn Valley?" asked a rat.
" How is Nicodimus and Mrs. Ages?" asked another.
" Stop with all the questions." said Janel, " I think we need to let him get used to his new surroundings."
" Janel is right as always." came a voice from behind them.
Janel crossed her arms and got an angry look on her face as two rats and a mouse walked in. She stood and walked next to Justin, grabbing his arms. She obviously did want Justin to say anything.
" Welcome back." said one of the rats.
" What do you want Vulture?" she asked angrily.
" Now Janel you know better then to lose your temper to me." he said.
" Forgive me I had a sudden burst of intelligence." she said with mocking anger.
Justin laughed and Vulture looked at him.
" And this must be the famous Justin. How do you do?" he said.
Janel pinched his arm and Justin understood that he was not to trust him.
" I'm fine." was all he said.
" I ask again Vulture, what do you and your common friends what in front of the council?" she asked.
" Common!" cried the mouse.
" Calm down Jade." said the other rat with them.
" I will not calm down Arin! I am no commoner!" she cried and drew her dagger.
Justin drew his and jumped in front of Janel as Vulture grabbed Jade's arm.
" No Jade." he said and they left.
" Who was that?" asked Justin as he put his dagger away.
" That was Vulture, Jade, and Arin. The towns bad seeds." said Janel and then walked back up to her seat.
The rest of the day Justin spent answering questions and talking to the council. By know Justin had some question of his own.
" How is it you come from N.I.M.H.?" he asked.
" That’s a long story," said one of the rats as they all looked at Janel.
" I guess I'll tell it, seeing as to how I was the first one there." she said and walked over to Justin.
" Well we were taken to N.I.M.H. the very first day it opened. Before you were there. We were given some other things that you were and one that you weren't. When you were brought to N.I.M.H. the scientist would test us together. They'd put one rat or mouse from our group with one from yours. We would be put throw tests and other things. That's how we meet Nicodimus and Jonathan. I was tested with both of them. We became friends and planned to escape together." she said.
" I remember Jonathan talking about another group of rats and mice," said Justin.
" The night you had planned to escape we were taken away. We were put into another room because we had been found to have something that you did not," she said.
" And what was that?" asked Justin.
" We were 'accidentally' injected with a chemical that you weren't. Called A1-17, a chemical only meant for humans. It made us faster, stronger, and our senses were heighten ten fold," she said.
" So that means what?" asked Justin.
" It means that we are stronger, faster, and can see, hear, smell, taste, and feel things you can't." she said with a smile.
" They make it sound so incredible." came a voice which made Justin freeze.
" Jonathan." he said and turned.
" So Justin, you finally found me," said Jonathan with a laugh.
Justin just starred at him in shock. He walked over and touched him to make sure he was not dreaming. Jonathan stood there same as ever, wearing a brown vest and a smile on his face.
" How?" asked Justin quietly.
" Well, when Dragon chased after me, I hid behind the bowl. The next thing I knew I was standing next to Janel. You probably looked back when Dragon had started eating that’s what he was chewing not me." he smiled.
" I can't believe it," he said.
" You should. I'm right here, in the fur." he said.
" Jonathan don't you think its time to get you home." said Janel.
" My family. Lets go." he said and they followed him outside.
They walked outside and saw it was dark. They decided to wait till morning. They showed Justin were he could sleep and then went to their homes. Janel and Justin woke up to screams. They ran outside and almost ran into each other.
" Who's screaming? Where's it coming from?" cried Justin.
" Jonathan!" cried Janel in a panic and ran off.
They ran to Jonathan’s house and up the stairs. But they were too late. When they got there they found it completely destroyed. Janel called for Jonathan but there was no answer.
" He's...he's...he's gone." she said surprise.
Chapter 3: News from the Outsider
Janel smelled the air and frowned. She knew who had done it and it was obvious that Vulture didn't care if she knew. By that time it was morning and Justin said they should go to Thorn Valley. Janel agreed and they called Jeremy. When they got to Thorn Valley they called a meeting and then went to get Mrs. Brisby and her family. When everyone was there they started.
" What is this about?" asked Mr. Ages.
" Its about Jonathan." said Justin.
" Jonathan!" everyone cried.
" But he was killed." said Mrs. Brisby sadly.
" No. He's alive. I saw him and talked to him." said Justin.
" Then where is he?" asked Timmy.
" In big trouble if we don't get to him soon." said Janel.
" He's alive?" asked Mrs. Brisby not sure if she wanted to believe them.
" Yes. He stayed with me at Crescent Valley." said Janel.
" Crescent Valley?" asked the other.
" Yes it's were the first group of rats and mice for N.I.M.H. live." said Janel.
" First group?" asked Brutus.
" Tim could your father really be alive?" Jenny asked him.
" I don’t know." said Tim.
They all look at Janel and Justin. Janel told them the story about the first group and Crescent Valley.
" So you saved him?" asked Mr. Ages.
" Yes and the day we went back to the rosebush, you were already gone." she said.
" So where is he now?" asked Martin.
" With the Vulture," said Janel as she crossed her arms.
" Not that dumb rat again." said Justin.
" Who's Vulture?" asked Mr. Ages.
" The bad seed of the Valley. He, Jade, and Arin are the top suspects in my book," said Janel.
" So what do we do?" asked Justin.
" We find him," said Timmy.
" They would most likely go North to the city. So we go North to the city." said Janel, " Justin pick the team."
" Me, you, and Brutus." he said.
" And us." said Timmy and Jenny.
" No this is to dangerous," said Justin.
" Let them come. We need all the help we can get." said Janel, not really paying attention as she smelled the air.
" What’s wrong?" asked Justin.
" We have company," she said with a frown.
Just then the doors opened and Arin walked in.
" Arin!" cried Janel angrily.
" Touch me and you'll never find him." he said.
" What have you done with my father!" cried Timmy and Martin at the same time.
" He's in the city. Vulture wants Justin and Janel to meet him there in two days." he said.
" Where?" asked Justin.
" At the old junk yard on 7th's street." he said and turned to leave.
But Janel wasn't done with him and jumped in front of him.
" You take this message to your boss. I will save Jonathan, even if I have to die for it!" she said trying very hard to keep her temper down.
" You can count on it," said Arin and left.
" I hate that rat." said Janel as she went back to Justin.
" We better get going. We need to get to Crescent Valley and tell the others about this. No doubt that Vulture will try to blame this on one of us." said Janel.
She walked outside to get Jeremy and the others started to talk.
" So he’s really alive?" asked everyone excitedly.
" Yes, but maybe not if we don’t get to him soon." said Justin.
" I can’t believe he is alive." said Mrs. Brisby in shock.
" Don’t worry we’ll get him back." said Tim.
Just then Janel walked back in carrying something that looked like a small gold watch. She handed it to Mrs. Brisby.
" I gave it to Jonathan in honor of what he did for you all. He has since never taken it off. He would have hid it from Vulture and the others." she said.
" So that means what?" asked Justin.
" That means they’re taking him to N.I.M.H." she said.
" N.I.M.H! But that place was destroyed." said Justin.
" There are many places with the same name all over the world. If N.I.M.H. gets their hands on him they could find us." she said.
" We have to hurry." said Justin and there was a loud crash outside.
" Jeremy’s here lets go." said Janel with a laugh.
As Janel, Justin, Brutus, Timmy, and Jenny flew off to Crescent Valley Mrs. Brisby and her other children talked with Mr. Ages.
The group landed by the bush just as Janel and Justin had before. Janel watched as they walked around Crescent Valley. They went before the council and Janel introduces everyone.
" So your Timmy." Said one of the mice.
" Yes." said Timmy.
" Your father was very proud when he heard what you did." said the mouse.
" Yes he was." said Janel with a smile.
" So back to business. Vulture has him and their going to N.I.M.H., but they want you to meat them at the junkyard?" asked one of the rats.
" Yes that’s it." said Justin.
" So you to go to the junkyard and the other go to N.I.M.H.," said the rats.
" That’s what we were planing." said Janel.
" Then why are you still here?" asked the rat.
They said goodbye and left. Janel took the to see Jonathan’s home and then to a small bridge over the stream. She told them that it was the first place he wanted to go. She didn't really know why, but she had done as she was told. She said that when he got there he dropped to his knees and cried. She had tried to comfort him, but he wouldn't stop.
" He missed his family." said Janel.
Everyone looked at her and she went on.
" He had always talked about his family. Everyday, in every conversation. He loved you all. But the one thing he said to me right before I set of from Thorn Valley is still stuck in my head." she said.
" What was that?" asked Timmy.
" The heart has its reasons where as reason no nothing." she said and looked at the water.
Justin could feel the tension in the air so he led them all back to the council hall. He said they should go right then. Janel agreed and they left the others for the junkyard. Soon after they left the others went to where Janel had told them to go, the new and improved N.I.M.H.