Chapter 1: The Brisby Family
Mrs.Brisby had slept in late, she had enjoyed the peace and quiet, but she knew that it would never last. She was awoken with a start.... "Moooom!" screamed Teresa. "Martin won’t leave me alone!"
Mrs.Brisby sighed, there was no use in trying to get any sleep now. She reluctantly got to her feet, as her children continued to fight.
"Ouch!" Martin yelled. "Get off my tail!"
Teresa stuck her tongue out at her brother, "Ha!, That’s what you get, so there!" She stomped off to tattle on Martin. "Mom." Said Teresa. "Martin and I were out gathering something for breakfast, just like you said, when he purposely tripped me and then I dropped everything, now what are we gonna eat?" asked Teresa, eyeing the corner of the doorway, where Martin was spying on her.
"Tattle-tale." She heard him mutter.
"Well." Said Mrs.Brisby, "I guess that we’ll just have to go out and see if we can find anything else to eat. We could have already been eating now, if not for Martin." She to, glared in the direction of the doorway. Martin grinned and quickly ran out the door, disparate to find something else for their breakfast that morning.
When Mrs.Brisby got into the kicthen, Timothy and Cynthia were anxiously awaiting their breakfast. "Mommy, I’m hungry." Cynthia complained.
"Well, I’m sorry, but we’ll just have to wait and hope that we can find something else for breakfast, you have your brother to thank for this." Said Mrs.Brisby, heading out the door.
Later that day, Jeremy, Mrs.Brisby’s good friend, the crow stopped by. "Hey, Mrs.B, I got something for you." He sounded very tired.
"What is it, Jeremy?" asked Mrs.Brisby.
"A letter from....uh, what’s his name, the rat....I know it, it’s,uh,it’s...."
Mrs. Brisby rolled her eyes, Jeremy was a very good friend, but, his memory was just terrible. "Justin?" asked Mrs.Brisby.
"Yeah! That’s it!"said Jeremy, giving her the letter. It read:
I have missed you deeply, as have all of us here at Thorn Valley. We would be very pleased if you and your family would come to Thorn Valley for a visit, or possibly, once you have seen what a true "wonderland" that Thorn Valley really is, you might even consider a move to Thorn Valley. Your children would have many friends, as would you, please consider this.
Mrs.Brisby felt like crying, she missed Justin and the rats so badly, but, a move? Suddenly, she heard four tiny, excited voices coming from behind her. Oh, wow!, can we really move to Thorn Valley, Mother?" asked Teresa.
"Yeah, Mom, can we?" asked Martin.
"Oh, please say yes, Mom." Begged Timothy.
"Can we, Mommy, can we, pleeease" Cynthia tugged at her Mother, pleading.
"Well." Said Mrs. Brisby. "I can see that there are no objections, give me overnight to think about it. Mrs. Brisby watched as four smiling faces headed back inside.
That night, while the children, (unusually helpful that night), were busy doing the laundry, Mrs.Brisby sat down in her room to think about what should be done. True, she and her children would have lots of friends, but, this was the only home that she or the children for that matter had ever known, and, this was the same home that Jonathan had left them, on the other hand....
"Martin!!!!" screamed Teresa.
Mrs.Brisby sighed, now what?, she thought, she should have known that she could never get a second to think around here, sometimes her children were such a headache! Teresa screamed again, and, Mrs.Brisby walked into the kicthen, only to be horrified. "Mother!" screamed Teresa. "Martin just ruined my brand new dress!" Teresa was soaking wet with soapy laundry water, and, Martin had the empty bucket in his hands, sprawled out on the floor, laughing non-stop. Cynthia too, couldn’t help but laugh right along with Martin, even though she had no part in the "joke" at all. Timothy was more concerned about Teresa and was horrified that Martin would do such a thing.
"Martin!" Mrs.Brisby scolded. Suddenly, Martin stopped laughing, and, with a guilty grin, turned to face his Mother. "You should be ashamed!" Mrs.Brisby yelled.
"Gee, I-I’m sorry, Mom." Said Martin, now looking towards the floor. "I’ve heard that Before!, now, apologize to Teresa, and then go to your room, no dinner for you tonight." Said Mrs.Brisby, angrily.
"But...." Started Martin. "Apologize Martin, now!" Mrs.Brisby glared down at her son. Martin hesitated, and then very quietly muttered. "I’m sorry, Teresa." It was so quiet that it was almost a whisper, but it was enough for Mrs.Brisby.
Martin slowly made his way to his room, where he would spend the rest of the night, but, what was worse was that he would get no dinner that night. After Martin was in his room, Teresa started complaining about her brother. "He’s a spoiled rotten brat!" she muttered, crossing her arms, and, stomping her foot. Mrs.Brisby sighed, out of all of her children, Martin was the most miss-behaved, and, she often worried what would become of him.
Late that night, after everyone else had already eaten and gone to bed, Martin tossed and turned while trying to sleep. His stomach growled, and, he felt sick. Just then, he heard someone or something open his bedroom door. "W-who’s there?" asked Martin, grabbing a stick that he often played with. "I’m not afraid of you, I ain’t scared of nothin!" Just then, the door opened, and, in walked Cynthia. "Well, you looked pretty scared of Mommy earlier!"she giggled.
Martin dropped the stick. "I was not!" he protested. "Now, what do you want?, can’t you just leave me alone?, I’m being punhised enough, without being pestered by little sisters too!"
"Well, alright then, I had brought you some food, but...."
Martin’s ears perked up. "Cynthia, wait....did you say food??!" he asked.
"Yeah, but, I thought that I was just a pest."said Cynthia, turning to go.
"Wait!, no, I-uh-I didn’t mean it, sis, you’re the best!, honest!" Martin pleaded with Cynthia not to go.
"Well....alright." she handed him a half a cob of corn and a small piece of bread. It wasn’t much, but at least it was something.
"I thought that it was funny." Said Cynthia.
"What?" asked Martin.
"When you ruined Teresa’s brand new dress, she looked so mad!"
Martin turned away. "Yeah, and so did everybody else too."
"Do you think that we’ll get to go to Thorn Valley?" asked Cynthia.
Thorn Valley!, Martin had almost forgotten all about it. "I sure hope so!"said Martin. "Now, you better get outta here, before someone finds out that you brought me some food." Martin yawned, now, finally starting to get sleepy.
"Alright, good night."said Cynthia, it was way past her bedtime, and, she was starting to fall asleep while standing-up.
"Oh, and, Cynthia, Thanks."
Cynthia had always looked-up to her brother, even though he got into trouble almost everyday. Mrs.Brisby also worried that she would be just like him when she got just a little bit older. For two of her children to act the way that Martin did, she would surely go insane.
Chapter 2: The Brisby Family's New Home at Thorn Valley
The next morning, the Brisby children were up very early to find out what their Mother’s decision was about Thorn Valley. Mrs.Brisby had always dreamed about Thorn Valley, and, now was her chance to finally see it. After many hours of thinking, Mrs.Brisby had finally come to a decision, she and her family would move to Thorn Valley. The children were delighted when they heard what her answer was.
Later that day, after everything was all packed-up and ready to go, Jeremy arrived, to fly the Brisby family to their new home at Thorn Valley. Mrs.Brisby, Teresa, and, Timothy had managed to all three fit on Jeremy’s back, but, with all of their package, their was no more room after that.
"I can ride on Jeremy’s foot." suggested Martin.
"But, you might fall off!" said Mrs.Brisby, her voice full of terror, she was already nervous enough, (she was terrified of heights), but, to have one of her children in such a risky spot,....and, what about Cynthia, where would she sit?
"Awww, it’s alright, Mrs.B, I won’t drop them." said Jeremy.
"Well, I-I don’t know...." Started Mrs.Brisby.
"Great!" said Martin, "Thanks, Mom."
Mrs.Brisby sighed, there was no use in trying to complain, or, to try to change her mind, she would just have to trust Jeremy. Martin climbed onto Jeremy’s right foot, and, Cynthia climbed onto the other, and, then, Jeremy took off.
Mrs.Brisby squeezed Timothy so tight in pure fright, that he couldn’t breath. Below her, she could hear Martin and Cynthia.
"This is great!" shouted Martin happily.
As soon as Jeremy landed, Mrs.Brisby ran over to Martin and Cynthia. "Are you two alright?" she asked, nervously.
"We’re fine, Mommy." Said Cynthia.
"Oh, thank goodness." Said Mrs.Brisby, as she kissed them both.
"Mom!" Martin complained, annoyed and embarrassed.
Just then, Justin appeared. "Mrs.Brisby!" he sounded very pleased.
"Oh, Justin!" Mrs.Brisby was almost in tears. The two hugged. "I’ve missed you so much!" said Mrs.Brisby.
Justin smiled, "We have all missed you, Mrs.Brisby, you a dear friend to all of us, in fact, many of the rats and the mice here at Thorn Valley look up to you as their hero."
Mrs.Brisby blushed. "A hero, me?"
"Why, yes, of course, as Nicodemus once said, you have "courage of the heart." Said Justin, smiling.
"Oh, yes, the stone, Justin, where is it?" Mrs.Brisby asked.
"It’s locked-up in the safest possible place, many of us still believe that it has a power to it that might possibly keep the humans out of Thorn Valley, it is our most valued item."
Mrs.Brisby looked puzzled. "Justin, do, you believe that it has a magical power?" asked Mrs.Brisby.
"Well, I-that is-well, it does seem to have some kind of power to it, and, it has been made a new rule that anyone who attempts to steal it, or, does steal, his or her punishment will be banishment from Thorn Valley, forever."
Mrs.Brisby half-smiled, "I guess that that one little stone has become very popular indeed."
"Yes, it has, it’s very important now." Said Justin.
"Hey! Mom, where’s our new house?" asked Martin, getting tired of hearing them talk.
Justin smiled. "Oh, yes, of course, your new home, follow me, please." Justin led the Brisby family to a great big stone, covered in soft moss. It had a good sized creek next to it for water and swimming, and, it was under a huge tree that would often supply them with food.
"Oh, Justin, it’s beautiful!" exclaimed Mrs.Brisby.
"Oh, Wow!" said Teresa.
"Neato!" came Cynthia.
"Cool!" said Martin.
"It’s great!" said Timothy. It seemed that all of them were very pleased with their brand new home.
After everything was all settled, the children wanted to go out and explore Thorn Valley. "Just remember," said Mrs.Brisby, "The rats have worked very hard on Thorn Valley, so, stay out of trouble, please." She looked straight at Martin as she said this, she knew that he would find someway to get himself into trouble, again. "Now, you won’t get into any kind of trouble, now, will you, Martin?" asked Mrs.Brisby.
"Who, me?" said Martin, grinning.
As they all four ran excitedly out the door, Mrs.Brisby sighed, there was no doubt in her mind that Martin would get into trouble, trouble followed him everywhere. And, she was right.
Chapter 3: Martin Brisby, The Trouble Maker
Timothy and Cynthia went into the main part of Thorn Valley to try and make some new friends. Meanwhile, Martin and Teresa were once again in another fight of sibling rivalry. "Remember the time that Dragon almost caught you?, Ha!, and you said that you could handle him!, yeah right!" said Martin.
"Oh, yeah!, well, you would have been scared too!" said Teresa.
"Who, me?, yeah right!, I’m not scared of nothing!"
"Anything." Teresa corrected him. "Oh, who cares??!" Teresa smiled. "I bet that I could win a race to you!" she said, grinning.
"Do you dare to challenge "The Great Martin??!" Martin asked, grinning back at her.
"Great??!, well, we’ll just see about that!" said Teresa. "I do challenge you, "Martin, the goof!"
"Alright!, fine then, "Teresa, the goon!" said Martin, angrily.
"Then, we’ll race from here to the creek right next to our home." Said Teresa. "On your mark, get set, go!" Within a second, or less, Martin and Teresa were off. On their way, they ran into several other rats and mice. Teresa stopped when things started to get out of control, but Martin just kept on running. When he noticed that his sister was no longer behind him, he called back to her. " Ha!, I’m winning, Teresa!" Just then, he tripped over a picnic table that the rats had built. Martin stood up, shook off, and, then, he continued to run. On his way, he ripped his shirt on a very important building of Thorn Valley, the very same building that the stone was kept in.
When he finally got to the creek, he saw his Mother, and, Teresa standing there very angrily. "Hey!" shouted Martin. "You cheated, Teresa!" Mrs.Brisby glared angrily at her son. It was then that Martin finally noticed that he was covered in mud, and, his shirt was all, ripped-up. "Uh, I-I...." Started Martin.
"Your in big trouble." Said Mrs.Brisby. "Now, go to your room, it’s a shame that you have to be grounded as soon as we got here." Said Mrs.Brisby.
"Well, it was Teresa’s idea, it was really all her fault, aren’t you gonna ground her too?" asked Martin.
"Teresa didn’t trash half of Thorn Valley, or, knock down other rats and mice who were in her way." Said Mrs.Brisby, now very angrily.
Martin sighed and headed towards his new room. Teresa smiled, satisfied that she had got her revenge. Mrs.Brisby gave her the "evil look" too. "Would you like to join your brother, Teresa?" she asked, angrily.
"Uh, no thanks." Teresa grinned and quickly ran back outside. Mrs.Brisby sighed, her children could be so much trouble, especially Martin.
Chapter 4: Accused, Punished and Banished
The very next morning, Justin came by, he seemed extremely upset. "Justin!" said Mrs.Brisby. "What’s wrong?" she asked. "It’s the stone, it’s been stolen!" said Justin.
"Stolen!" said Mrs.Brisby, shocked. "Do you have any idea of who stole it?" she asked.
"Well, yes, we did find one piece of evidence, and, that’s why I really need to talk to you, Mrs.Brisby. You see, well, this is the evidence that we found." He said, pulling out a piece of Martin’s shirt. "This does belong to your son, Martin doesn’t it?"
Mrs.Brisby looked shocked. "Well, yes, but surely you don’t suspect Martin...." She started. "Of course, I don’t, he may have caused some trouble, but he’s a good kid. However, I’m afraid that not everyone thinks the same way that I do....in short, Mrs.Brisby, your son has been accused of stealing the stone, in which, it will now be up to the court to decide his fate. I once told you of the punishment of stealing the stone...."
Mrs.Brisby interrupted. "But, he’s only a child!" she cried out, now starting to get frightened, what if they banished Martin from Thorn Valley forever, he could never survive on his own.
"I assure you, Mrs.Brisby, that I will be on your side, and, I’ll do my very best to try to keep your son from getting banished."
Unknown to either of them, Martin had been spying on them, and, when Mrs.Brisby looked-up, she saw the most shocked expression that she had ever seen in her whole life. "Martin!" she said. "Please come down here, Justin needs to talk to...."
Martin interrupted her. "You think I’m a thief??!" he asked, and Mrs.Brisby could see that shocked expression change to one of distrust, anger, and, fear. Martin started back to his room, but, Justin caught him by the arm.
"I’m afraid that you’re gonna have to come with me." he said.
"W-what are you gonna do?" asked Mrs.Brisby. "don’t worry, Mrs.Brisby, he won’t be banished unless he is found guilty. Please come with me."
"Yes, of course." Said Mrs.Brisby, nervously.
"B-banished??!" said Martin.
"Most likely, just don’t be scared, and...." Started Justin.
"Scared??, I’m not scared of nothing!" said Martin, trying to act brave. Mrs.Brisby smiled weakly, Martin would never admit that he was scared, as she had, even though she could see the fear in his eyes.
When they got to the court, Mrs.Brisby got even more nervous then she already was. The judge appeared and stated the case. "The crimes held against one, Martin Brisby are as follows...." Martin couldn’t stand it.
"Crimes??!" he cried out. "But, I didn’t do anything!" the judge looked very annoyed.
"Please keep him quiet." he said. Mrs.Brisby told Martin to be quiet. Martin sighed, and, then he whispered in his Mother’s ear. "Mom, they can’t make me leave Thorn Valley forever, can they?"
Mrs.Brisby almost cried out loud. "No, of course not, I won’t let them." She said, trying to keep herself from crying.
The judge continued the list of charges. "Robbery, destructive behavior, and, just plan annoying at times, I must say so myself." Said the judge.
Mrs.Brisby was starting to get very annoyed and angry about what they were saying about her son.
At the end of the trial, the judge said something that made Mrs.Brisby and Martin gasp with fright. "Guilty!" yelled the judge.
"Nooo!" screamed Mrs.Brisby.
Martin was too shocked to even speak.
"And, his punishment, Martin Brisby is to be banished from Thorn Valley, forever!" said the judge.
"Please, sir, you can’t do this, he’s only a kid." Said Justin. "Banishment at this age would surely mean his death!"
The judge said nothing, and, only ordered the guards to show the "traitor" to the gates of Thorn Valley.
Mrs.Brisby grabbed her son’s hand, she wouldn’t let them do this. "M-mom, I-I’m...." started Martin.
"Scared?" asked Mrs. Brisby.
Martin didn’t answer, he could never bring himself to say that he was truly scared. Just then, two great, big rats came over to them. One of them grabbed Martin, while the other one held back Mrs.Brisby.
"Nooo!" screamed Mrs.Brisby. "You can’t take him, You can’t." Mrs.Brisby cried.
"Mom!" Martin cried back to her as they lead him to the gates of Thorn Valley.
"Martin!,Nooo,Nooo!" Mrs.Brisby yelled out. Martin looked up at the two big rats.
"P-please, just let me go home, I-I didn’t do anything!" pleaded Martin.
They opened the gates to Thorn Valley. "We’re sorry, kid, but, you’re on your own now." They said, closing the gates in his face. Martin turned around to face the woods, it was almost nightfall now, and the owls, foxes, cats, and almost everythingelse that would surely kill him.
Martin wiped the tears from his face, and, for the first time in his life, he had the courage to say outloud. "I-I’m scared." Said Martin, as he shivered in the cold, dark night.
Chapter 5: A Close Call
Martin quietly searched for a safe place to spend the night. Suddenly, a pair of glowing eyes appeared in the darkness. Martin stopped dead in his tracks, sensing danger, his first thought was to run, but, as the mysterious creature slowly crept forward, Martin found that he was paralyzed with fear. Just then, the glowing eyes stepped forward into a pool of moonlight, it was a fox, but, luckily for Martin, it was only a cub, and, probably didn’t know that mice were one of a fox’s main courses. The fox cub slowly crept towards Martin. Martin carefully picked up a nearby twig, (which, to a mouse looks like a stick.), the curious cub cocked his head.
"I’m not scared of you." Said Martin, trying to sound as brave as he possibly could. The fox cub yipped playfully, and, then took off back into the woods. Martin sighed with relief, but, before he could even take another step, the fox cub came back again, this time with a much larger fox with him, the adult fox was the cub’s Mother, and she knew that mice were a very delicious treat for a fox. Martin trembled with fear, but, this time, his mind took control, and, he ran for his life.
The fox followed him, she was much faster and stronger, and from her view, Martin didn’t have a chance. Martin leaped over a large tree root, and, while following him, the fox tripped over the root, but, it only took her a second or less to scramble back to her feet, and continue the pursuit of her victim.
Finally, the fox cornered Martin up against a tree, with her cub right behind her, learning a lesson in hunting from his Mother. As the fox opened her mouth, ready to chomp down on the helpless mouse, Martin cringed, and, closed his eyes, this is it, he thought, I’m gonna die.
Just before the fox could devour Martin, a small rock hit her on the head. She yelped in surprise, and, grabbed her small cub, and, took off, fearing that the rock could have been thrown by a human, a creature that all of the animals feared. Martin slowly opened his eyes, how could this be? "Hi there!" said a voice.
Martin looked up to see a young rat, just a kid, about the same age as him, but, much taller of course, because rats get much bigger then mice ever do. "H-hi" said Martin, still in shock from his near-death-experience. "I’m Martin." He said cautiously.
The rat smiled. "I’m Rascoe."
Chapter 6: A New Friend
The young rat who had just saved Martin’s life, was actually small for his age. He was black and white in color, and he wore a small blue bandana around his neck. "T-thanks." Said Martin. "You saved my life."
Rascoe smiled. "Awww, it was nothing, I mean you were gonna be fox food!, I had to do something!, So, what are you doing out here all by yourself anyway?, I mean, are you lost, where do you live?"
"Well, uh, I’m kind of on my on now, I-I was banished," said Martin, wishing that he were home right now.
"Banished?, but, what did you do?" asked Rascoe.
"Nothing!, that’s just it, I was accused, and, banished, I was forced to leave my home, and, my family, for doing nothing at all!" said Martin, angrily.
"Then, shouldn’t you go back to prove yourself innocent?" asked Rascoe.
"I can’t!, they won’t let me come back, they won’t even give me a chance, or even open the gates of Thorn Valley if I even try."
"W-wait a minute! D-did you say T-Thorn Valley??!" asked Rascoe, sounding rather nervous.
"Yeah, Why?" asked Martin, curious to why Rascoe would react in such a way.
"W-well, it’s, uh, it’s just that...., well, uh, nothing. Your last name, it isn’t, Brisby, is it?" asked Rascoe.
"Yeah, why?, have you got something against my family?" asked Martin, starting to get angry.
"N-no!, it’s nothing like that....well, it’s my Dad, h-he hates Thorn Valley, and, the Brisby family, in fact, he has vowed revenge on all of them, but, I don’t want him to hurt anyone, and, I wouldn’t want you, or, your family to get caught in one of his plans." Said Rascoe, now feeling almost ashamed of being the son of such a cruel rat.
"B-but, why?" asked Martin.
"It’s a long story." Said Rascoe. "I’m not going anywhere." Said Martin.
And so, Rascoe told Martin the whole story, and, how Mrs.Brisby had stopped his father from taking complete control of all of the rats.
"You mean that your Dad is....Jenner??!" asked Martin, shocked.
"Yeah." Said Rascoe.
"B-but, Jenner is dead." Said Martin, remembering what his Mother had told him.
"No, he is alive, and, he wants his revenge. Listen, he’s got a plan that would involve the destruction of Thorn Valley, and, of your family too, Martin, you have got to warn them, all of them." Said Rascoe.
Martin looked towards the ground, he couldn’t warn them, they had banished him, and, even if he did try to warn them, they probably wouldn’t listen to him. "I can’t, they won’t listen to me anyway, but, I can’t let anything happen to my family." Said Martin.
To be continued...