Now it came to pass that the Mouse, being a curious and inquisitive fellow, had fallen into a farmers trap, and was scurrying around in a small square cage. Unexpectedly, he hears a rustle of leaves behind him. Quick as a flash, he turns around, for his senses are superior. He sees a beautiful snake, with bright shining scales, each one like an individual mirror. The Snake moves slowly, thinking, for he is hungry, but knows he cannot eat the Mouse when it is in the cage. The Mouse also knows this, for he is wise and old and has learned much by watching the efforts of his now-departed brothers from the safety of his small den. He knows that if he stays in the trap, he will be killed by the farmer, but if he tries to escape, he risks being caught by the Snake. The Snake is very hungry after failed attempts of catching free mice, rats and other small animals. He is willing to wait for the Mouse to make his decision, which he does. "Excuse me, Mr. Snake." The Snake looks over, already knowing what the Mouses decision will be, for he has also learned from his previous efforts. "My good Sir Snake, I know that you want to eat me so much," continues the Mouse, "so it would be quite wise for me to stay here, but I have a hungry family, and I need to take food to them or they will die. All I ask is some help from you. It is little risk in your part." The Snake suddenly looks tired and weary, and breaths a loud sigh. "What kind of fool do you take me for?" he asks, "I am rather hungry after being asleep during the winter, you are the only food I can find, and you want me to spare your life?" "There will, of course, be a reward in your favour. If you can help me get out of this steel prison, I can show you a whole field where hundreds of plump mice feed freely everyday." He is lying of course, being the cunning creature that all mice are, but even that is too much for the Snake to resist. "Okay, I accept, but you had better not be lying puny Mouse." The foolish Snake thinks he is going to let one mouse escape but eat hundreds more, but the sly Mouse thinks that he will escape from the Snake and his friends won't be in danger. "All you need to do is squeeze in through that opening there to allow me to escape, holding the door open," the Mouse tells the Snake of his plan, "then I hold the door open from the outside, while you wriggle out. That way, we are both safe, and I can show you that field I know of." The Snake is a bit suspicious, but all he can see is a field with fat mice scurrying in it, so he does not object to the Mouse's false promise. So he squeezes into the narrow gap at the trap's opening. The Mouse scurries out, but doesn't stop. He keeps running until he has reached the opposite end of the field, where he risks a glance behind him. The Snake is thrashing about inside the trap, hissing in anger. "You betrayed me. You will pay for what you have done, foolish mouse!" The Mouse keeps running until he has reached his den, where he tells his story of his sly, cunning nature and the foolishness of the Snake.

Moral: Thinking can turn an impossible situation into a manageable one.