The Elephants and the Mouse

In the days early morning the animals of the Savannah were all waking and readying themselves for the same routines that they followed every day. A small herd of elephants were making their way to the water hole, not too far from their sleeping area. The family was a small one, mother, father, and three calves.

Every day went the same for the family. Get up, drink, bathe, eat, relax, and then have a bit of fun before bed time. Not much tended to disturb this nice family's daily events and life was good for them.

Of course, there are always things that can come along and ruin a good rest or a fun romp in the dirt. This one family generally only had one problem that bothered them, but it never occurred to a huge extent. No, it wasn't predators like the zebra or gazelle families. This problem was much, much smaller in size, but much bigger in impact upon the elephant's lives.

You see, they didn't fear or bother with the large predators such as lions and cheetahs; they left well enough alone. The problem that the elephants had was much more silly than the loss of their lives for the ability for a fierce cat to live on another few days. They feared, not the largest of animals but, the smallest of them.

Many of the other animals thought it was silly for the elephants to run at the very sight of one, but they couldn't help it. They were scary; and a huge threat to their way of life. The way they scuttled around with their large teeth and long tails. They could go anywhere with no problems. Sneak into water when they weren't looking, hide in a pile of nice grass just so they could sink their teeth into the tender elephant flesh. It was enough to drive an elephant crazy!

But it was on one of those days where everything is going right that things took a turn for chaos and disorder.

The family had just finished their morning bath, already making their way back to the welcomed shade of the trees that blocked out the hot African sun. The three children were romping and rolling in the dirt, letting it fly up around them as they wrestled and fought for the most 'dominant' of the trio.

"Owwie! Mommy. Sarella bit me!"

It was a general occurrence. The middle calf left the other two to go whine to her mother. But this wasn't a usual complaint, surprising the elephant parents.

"Bit you? Nonsense child. It's impossible for an elephant to bite another elephant.. unless it's on the trunk of course. Now where did she bite you?"

The young one shuffled around, pointing to her mid back with her stubby trunk. The sight of what was there did more to shock and frighten the parents than hearing that a lion was on the hunt near-by.

Sitting atop the little elephants back was a tiny creature. Long tail, big ears, cute nose, and whiskers all intact. Nibbling on a bit of grass sat a little mouse, pulled onto her hind legs and looking quite pleased with her find. Upon spotting the small pinkish creature both parents trumpeted in fear, raising up to their hind quarters, flailing their front legs in the air.

Seeing her parents react in such a way poor Taramoa freaked, backing off in a very quick manner, dropping the mouse to the ground with a barely audible squeak.

After falling the mouse scampered around the elephant family - all five now that the other two children were alerted thanks to their parents - weaving in and amongst the flailing and stomping legs that threatened to stop her at any moment.

"Please don't hurt me! I was only here for food! Ouch. Watch it!" The mouse's feeble cries to the frightened mammals were of no help to her. They were far too noisy and afraid to even try to pay attention to what the mouse would say. After all, it was a fierce and destructive predator and they had no brains.

All the noise and commotion that the elephants were making alerted all the other animals in the near-by area to the elephant family's 'latest' problem. It didn't take long for a small group of animals to gather behind the bushes and watch the frenzy that such a small, insignificant animal could cause.

This time happened to be worse than normal though. You see, it wasn't just the near-by group animals that heard the commotion; it was also the rest of the mouse family that lived a short ways away. Even over all the trumpeting and stamping the cries of help and peace were heard by the other mice who had since scampered out to help their family member. This only put the elephants into more of a frenzy; they were all going to die! The horrible mouse monsters were there to nibble them to bits.

Of course it was only a matter of time for something of more interest to happen, though it wasn't what any of the spectators were expecting. Elephants were stamping, mice were scampering and crying out for peace and yet neither would stop to look at the situation. Sadly enough, it happened all at once. The mice just happened to move the wrong way, and their lives were what they would pay for their small mistakes.

In a matter of seconds the five mice that were there (all adults, they left the children at home) either had a foot come landing down upon them or were smashed into oblivion by a wayward trunk. Five lives, even though small, were taking in the time of a blink of the eyes. A split second of horror and fear for the elephants and surprise and terror for the mice. Everyone watching had no idea of what happened right away, for the elephants didn't stop for some time, that is until they noticed that there were no evil mice scampering about anymore.

The family all stopped and looked around, though it was the father who first noticed what had happened. He just had been one of those who had steeped on a mouse, and had a lovely patch of blood and bits on the sole of his foot. All the animals looked on in disbelief as the large elephant shook and stared, not saying or doing much more. Either he was shocked or afraid, or both, but those looking on were disgusted.

"You killed them!"

"The poor mice!"

"How could you?"

Angry calls and surprised gasps came from the animals watching, many of them turning and walking away in disgust. Soon the elephant family was left there, staring at each other in a dumbfound way. They didn't know what to do or say, nor did they know how to take what they just did. They had been the killers, not the other way around.

Slowly, a small gazelle wandered forward, having hung back to watch the aftermath of the tragedy. Carefully he approached them, giving them a fairly wide berth just in case the same thing could happen to him. With a confused look upon his face he asked the family one question:

"Why were you afraid of them?"

They couldn't answer.

Remember... don't let irrational fear drive you. Take hold of it and don't let go.


A/N: This is for my english personal response. I tend to have fun with the fables and stuff. I thought this one was a lot of fun to write.. and I like how it turned out too. Hopefully everyone can understand that the essay was based on fear; more particuallrily irrational fear (mine at least). So ya. It'd be nice to know what people think of it.