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Horror Plague Overwhelms Village Essay

The Duvall family is this morning leaving the small village of Malsam, after a terrible experience.

During the past two weeks, an infestation of mice has occurred throughout the village of Malsam, where the Duvall family had recently moved in.

Various neighbours of the Duvall family began to be suspicious as they heard unusual noises coming from their home. On Monday 13th Gabriel and Luca, the Duvall children, arrived at school with a shoebox containing a large, dirty mother mouse and her six babies. This triggered a lot of talking and, on the same day, curious neighbours knocked at the Duvall house for an ‘inspection’. The nightmare became reality when an army of light grey mice suddenly rushed out of the house and occupied the whole of Malsam.

The effects of this infestation have had horrendous repercussions on the villagers. Rapidly, the population of this unlucky village HAS claimed to be feeling bad, nauseous, dizzy and a wide variety of illnesses have been diagnosed since. Furthermore, the village has been submerged by a noxious, putrid smell for now two weeks and villagers barely go out of their homes. Schools and businesses have been closed for an unknown period of time and doctors at the medical research centre are working day and night in order to find out a solution to eradicate these contaminated, dirty creatures. The mood amongst the villagers is one of panic and agitation as they are concerned that another plague might resurface in a village, where not so long ago this dreadful disease had taken three quarters of the population.

The attitudes of the villagers towards the Duvall family has been extremely pessimistic, they have been highly criticised and humiliated, as the blame has been put entirely on them. Merchants and shops have stopped selling to them and they have been banned from most public places. Also, villagers have been throwing out the cautiously crafted furniture that Henri, the father of the Duvall family, had sold them. In addition, the Duvall children are no longer allowed within their school building due to a number of parents complaining that they were a bad influence on the other innocent students. Moreover, some villagers, the most superstitious ones, went as far as to say that Katya, the mother of the Duvall family had been exercising witchcraft through those mice and that her aim was probably to cause panic and disaster in Malsam.

“We are severely desolate for what has happened, but we continue to argue that this is a misunderstanding and we have absolutely nothing to do with this infestation of mice”, said Henri Duvall, as one of our reporters was questioning him. The mother of the family was very moved by the whole situation and kept crying, “I do not know a thing about witchcraft, we are innocent, please believe us”. As for the children, they kept repeating aimlessly, “we only wanted the mice from our favourite story book”.

These recent events have therefore caused the departure of this broken family, which is leaving Malsam today, with nothing left but the memories of this unfortunate experience.

In the fifth paragraph, the writer uses language in order to create effects. The couple is described as lying on their “raft of safety”. Here the word ‘raft’ represents the couple’s bed. The phrase altogether suggests that they are only safe as long as they do not move, as they are surrounded by a ‘sea of movement and noise’. Here the word ‘sea’ connotes vastness, and the writer is therefore trying to reveal the large quantity of movement and noise going on in this room. Furthermore, the writer portrays a sinister atmosphere as he says that the ‘squeaking became shrill and angry’. The author uses a simile as he compares the loudness of the ‘gnawing sounds’ to ‘men sawing through hard wood’. This once again emphasises the malevolent mood put forward in this paragraph. Objects, which rolled around in the room are personified as they are ‘threatening to drown the couple’s sanity’.

Here, the verb ‘drown’ is subtly used as it refers back to the vocabulary of the ‘sea’; suggesting that ‘the couple’s sanity’ will be drowned in the ‘sea of movement and noise’. Moreover, the writer describes the mice through their ‘warm’ bodies, which ‘squirmed’ over the protagonist’s hand and had ‘bald tails’. Here the verb ‘squirm’ attributes a snakelike motion to the mice and the adjective ‘bald’ creates an effect of disgust in the reader. This is emphasised even more as the writer further describes those ‘glistening, grey rodents’, which had ‘long, dirty, gristly tails’. Here, the word “glistening” is used in a pejorative way and the adjectives ‘long, dirty and gristly’ all depict the unpleasant and repulsive image created by the writer.

In the last paragraph, the writer creates effects through the use of language. Through this paragraph the writer describes the mother mouse and her brood with a positive aspect and he portrays a peaceful and cozy scene. The mother mouse is outlined as having a ‘light grey’ colour and having ‘bright’, ‘semi-closed’ eyes. The use of the word ‘light’ to characterise the colour grey foreshadows the peacefulness described in the following lines as grey is already a very neutral and quite dull colour. However, the adjective ‘bright’ creates a contrast with the ‘light grey’ as the mouse’ eyes are vivid and radiant, yet ‘semi-closed’. Furthermore, the mother mouse is said to be ‘contented and at peace’. This emphasises the tranquil atmosphere set by the writer and the word ‘contented’ reveals that the mouse does not need much to be content.

The writer then introduces the mouse’ brood as the mother mouse ‘nuzzled her six babies’. Here, the verb ‘nuzzled’ suggests a gentle and soft move, which adds to the agreeable image. In addition, the use of the noun ‘baby’ to describe the mouse’ brood depicts a sense of affection. The brood is illustrated as having ‘little mouths pink and puckered’, which provides a cute aspect to this image. Moreover, the brood is identified as being ‘so vulnerable and so adored’. Here, the adjective ‘vulnerable’ implies that the brood is fragile and the adjective ‘adored’ suggests that they are deeply loved by the mother mouse but also by the Duvall children. In addition the repetition of the adverb ‘so’ puts emphasise to the phrase. The writer then personifies the mother mouse’ whiskers as they ‘twitched with delight’ and the reader is provided with a last beautiful image as the mouse ‘warm tail wrapped around her brood’. Here, the writer depicts the mother mouse’ devotion and kindness as she keeps her brood warm and safe.

Rats have various positive aspects. Firstly, they are extremely smart and have a strong memory from which they can memorise and learn new skills. In addition, rats have played an important part in scientific discoveries. Moreover, they are friendly and caring towards other rats but also towards man. Also, in some severe cases, rats have been able to save people’s lives for example, from a fire. Another positive aspect is that rats can go on longer distances than camels without any water. Plus, an interesting fact is that a rat can fall from several metres without injuring itself. Furthermore, in different cultures, people associate rats to honesty, hard work and good luck, which shows their respect towards this animal. Equally important, rats have the ability to detect bombs they are therefore sometimes used in missions. Finally, they have the capacity to identify diseases in humans, such as tuberculosis.

Mice have a variety of negative aspects. First of all, they have the ability to chew through boxes of food, which is a disadvantage. They also destroy objects such as candles as they have sharp teeth. Moreover, they make disruptive, loud noises; they are dirty and can carry diseases. Mice are also described as being able to hide anywhere and everywhere such as under the floors and in the bedroom. Furthermore, they can cause injuries as they have claws with which they can scratch people. In addition, mice reproduce quickly meaning that they can infest places rapidly. Finally, the reader is able to understand that it is difficult to eradicate mice as vast amounts of poison are needed and poison has to be placed in numerous places for it to work purposefully.

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