The Passion of Pamela

Chapter One: Pamela had little regard for the other field mice. They had no real understanding of science and science was Pamela's passion.

She didn't care that the other field mice didn't understand her. She knew one day her ground-breaking research would make her very famous.

Someday, Pamela believed, mice would be able to get through even the hardest earth in the depths of winter and that, would be thanks to her.

Pamela spent her days in the lab where no one bugged her about not eating cheese. Her happiest moments were spent away from the other mice.

Chapter Two: There was a knock at the door. "How unusual" thought Pamela "no one ever comes to the lab". She put down the beaker and waited.

"Who could that be?" she thought. There was another knock. Still she made no move. There was a third knock. Pamela turned towards the door.

She walked up to the door. Another knock. She took a breath. "Who is it?" she said. But her voice came out much quieter than she meant it to.

The voice on the other side of the door mumbled something. "WHO is it?" she said."IT'S ROLF!" was the shouted reply. Pamela was surprised.

"Rolf? Really? Here?" she was very happily surprised. "It's been ages!" Pamela opened the door quickly. But she was shocked by what she saw.

Chapter 3: Rolf was a hamster and, like all hamsters, pretty darn solitary in his habits. It was really very unusual for him to go visiting.

But Rolf had a reason for knocking on Pamela's door that day. A very good reason. You see Pamela was the only real scientist that Rolf knew.

Rolf was seeing a hamster named Janet. He liked her a lot but Janet had killed three of her previous boyfriends and that worried Rolf a bit.

That was why he'd come. He wanted Pamela's expert advice. Was Janet predisposed to kill all of her mates? Or did those guys have it coming?

Chapter 4- Truth be told, Pamela had always had a bit of a thing for Rolf. It started in first year university when they had Psych together.

But 1st year university had been years ago, the Rolf standing in her doorway was quite different from the one she had fallen for back then.

For one thing he'd lost a ton of weight,she almost didn't recognise him. He must have been spending a lot of time on his wheel she thought.

"Pam" the hamster blurted out without any preamble, "I need your help!" Had he always been so blunt? "Hello Rolf." the field mouse replied.

The hamster smiled. It was a nice smile. A smile Pamela remembered very well. "I'm sorry Pammy. How are you?" He looked around. "Nice lab."

Ah, he was charming. There was just no denying it. "Uh, thanks." she replied, trying not to look him in the eyes, fearing she would be sunk.

Chapter 5. It was a nice lab. As far as labs go, thought Rolf. Pammy looked about the same. Except for her little white coat. That was new.

He realised he was going to have to tread quite carefully (not really his strong suit) if he wanted an old girlfriend's help with a new one.

"I can't believe how successful you've become!" he said. Rolf thought that didn't sound quite right. "I mean, you sure are successful Pam."

Pamela was never really comfortable receiving compliments but knowing that Rolf thought of her as successful did give her a bit of a thrill.

"You're a real scientist." he said. "Well..." Rolf paused. "Hmm... I wonder, think you could help me out with something?" Pam stared at him.

Ch. 6 Janet thought she was basically a nice hamster. For instance, she always wiped down the wheel after her workouts. But the killings...

they worried her a bit. Shortly after she met Rolf, whom she really, really liked, she'd told him. But now she wondered, was that a mistake?

When she told Rolf that she had killed all her previous suitors, he seemed to take the news reasonably well. He did leave right away though.

She thought it probably meant nothing. Maybe he just really had to be somewhere. She didn't know that he made a beeline for one of his exes.

Ch. 7 Rolf had to be careful about how he phrased his request. "Pammy, uh... when we uh... knew each other... did you ever want to kill me?"

"What? Why would you ask me that?" she was confused. Pam wondered what this was all about. But she thought seriously for a second. Had she?

Sure, he had been exasperating from time to time. Mostly because he paid so little attention to her but it hadn't made her want to kill him.

"I'd be happy if you didn't." he said. "But I think my current girlfriend might." Quickly he added "Not that you were ever my "girlfriend"!"

Pamela looked at Rolf. Maybe her opinion was changing. Maybe he was pretty killable sometimes. Suddenly she heard a loud noise behind her.

Ch.8-Vincent had always liked Pamela but he had never dared to express his feelings openly because she was, technically at least, his boss.

Most days Vincent washed test tubes and Erlenmeyer flasks, refilled the tanks for the Bunsen burners, wiped down the autoclave and swept up.

But today he was helping Pamela work on an actual experiment. Every time he was close to her he could feel his head start to swim a little.

This made Vincent a pretty dangerous lab assistant. There were things that could explode in that room if they weren't properly attended to.

The most dangerous thing in the lab was the nitroglycerin that Pam used in her groundbreaking research. Today Vincent was moving some of it.

Chapter 9 Rolf jumped. The loud noise startled him a bit and the bright flash of light just made it worse. That's why he ducked behind Pam.

Pamela wasn't frightened. She just made a beeline for the fire extinguisher, that good friend to any scientist with a clumsy lab assistant.

With the fire now out Pam introduced Rolf to Vincent. "Hello" he said from behind the desk where he'd hidden while she doused her assistant.

The sheepish and supine Vincent was thinking "Who is THIS guy?". He wanted to glare at the interloper but it was hard with foam in his eyes.

Rolf felt hostile towards him too. Not because he saw Vincent as a rival but because he was an obstacle. Rolf wanted to speak to Pam alone.

Rolf asked: "Shouldn't you go to the hospital? Or a walk-in? Your fur is pretty badly singed." Pam was surprised. That didn't seem like him.

He'd never really taken an interest in anyone else's well being. Especially not another male hamster. And he'd only just met Vincent. Weird.

Ch. 10 Janet didn't even know of the existence of Pamela. Rolf had never mentioned her. Why would he? Mostly he liked to talk about himself.

But Janet didn't mind. He was quite good looking so when his stories got boring she'd just stare at him and tune out the sound of his voice.

But Rolf was better than Paulo, her last boyfriend. He never stopped licking himself. Before him there was Sam. He kept wearing her dresses.

Janet ran over in her mind the longish list of her former paramours and a thought popped into her head, "Maybe they DID all deserve to die."

But should she kill Rolf? And if so how? Her .357 Magnum was at the gunsmith's being rebored and her smothering pillow was at the cleaners.

She was out of poison. She had no lead pipe, no knife and no rope. Not even a candlestick. Was it a sign? But Janet didn't believe in signs.

Ch. 11 Pam decided to drive Vincent to the emergency room and Rolf decided to "tag along" as he still hadn't managed to really talk to her.

The three of them sat silently in the ER waiting room. Nobody spoke for a while. Suddenly Rolf said "So Pammy, about that killing thing..."

She had to think for a second. What was he talking about? He wondered if she wanted to kill him? "Why are you here Rolf? What do you want?"

Rolf wanted to phrase his reply exactly. He needed Pam's help. He didn't want to piss her off. "So... Pam, there's this girl I really like."

Rolf went on "and uh...she's killed all her boyfriends and I was uh...wondering... do you know something sciency to uh... make her... stop?"

Ch12 He'd been badly thrown (metaphorically) by the explosion in the lab but Vince was sure he'd heard that Rolf guy use the word "sciency".

Just who was this jerk? And why had he come to the vet's with them? Vincent had looked forward to spending time alone with Pam outside work.

Okay, so maybe a trip to the ER wasn't what he'd have planned for their 1st date but at least they were out and about doing stuff together.

But Rolf was in the way. Not only that, but this talk of murders wasn't setting a mood conducive to romance. The guy was cramping his style.

It would be really hard to hook up with Pam while Rolf was there. Vince looked down at the badly singed fur on his belly. He was depressed.

Ch. 13 Pam wasn't sure she should use her knowledge of science to stop Rolf's murder. It was pretty clear to her that he was a giant idiot.

Pam wondered what, exactly, it was about him that she had found attractive. Aside from his phenomenal good looks, of course. There was that.

But Pam wanted more. She was successful now. She could do better than an old crush. And, she reminded herself, he already had a girlfriend.

He had a girlfriend who wanted him dead and he STILL wanted to be with her. What the hell was up with that? That's what Pam wanted to know.

"Tell me more about her." Pam asked. "Okay. Like what?" He didn't want to share too much but Rolf didn't know how this science thing worked.

"Well" he began "she's a hamster. Like me." He added needlessly . "And... pretty hot..." Hmm, should he say that? It might make Pam jealous.

Ch.14 As Vincent sat on the hard "bed" in his paper gown, he worried about having left Rolf and Pamela alone together in the waiting room.

He was very insecure. Other male hamsters often intimidated him. And this Rolf guy, well, even Vincent had noticed how good looking he was.

He had to get out there or Pam would fall prey to the charms of that hamster Lothario. If only they would finish shaving off his singed fur!

Finally they finished. There was a mirror in the room but Vince was in a hurry to get back to see Pamela. He didn't pause for even a second.

But maybe he should have. He could tell by the startled look on Pamela's face when he re-entered the room that he must look pretty alarming.

Rolf's jaw dropped at the sight of Pam's assistant. He had almost no fur left! "Note to self" Rolf thought "not a good look for a hamster".

Rolf's jaw dropped at the sight of Pam's assistant. He had almost no fur left! "Note to self" Rolf thought "not a good look for a hamster".

Pam just said "Oh Vincent! Are you okay?" He didn't feel okay and when he caught a glimpse of himself reflected in the window he felt worse.

When the ER staff shaved off Vince's singed fur they hadn't tried to make him more attractive. Clearly there was not a stylist amongst them.

Ch.15 Janet decided. She really liked Rolf and maybe they could have had a future together but she had to be true to herself. He had to die.

Janet was not indecisive by nature. Once she had decided to kill someone she did just that. Rolf was doomed. But, she had to find him first.

That wouldn't be easy. Janet had no idea that Rolf had gone to see Pam and she sure didn't know he'd taken a badly singed Vincent to the ER.

Luckily, Janet was having Rolf tailed. But unluckily, the detective she had hired for the job was a star-nosed mole with very poor eyesight.

The myopic gumshoe was not tailing a hamster at all but a single child's sock. He just thought it was the easiest tailing job he'd ever had.

But after six straight hours of squatting behind the dryer in the basement laundry of a downtown apartment Mr. Mole's legs were cramping up.

He just had to move. He thought he could surreptitiously stretch. He didn't think that he'd stand up, fall and knock over the ironing board.

But that's what he did. For a moment he was frozen in fear. Had he been found out? No,his subject didn't move a hair. Because it was a sock.

But Mr. Mole still hadn't figured it out. He just thought this fellow was very very canny. Should he leave his hiding space to confront him?

Ch 16 Pam, Rolf and Vince stood silently looking at her car in the parking garage underneath the veterinary hospital. She had lost her keys.

Rolf said he knew how to hot wire a car. But first they had to get into it. "Do you have a coat hanger?" he asked her. Pamela stared at him.

For a minute she said nothing. Then she realised - he was still waiting for an answer! Wow. But then she'd never admired him for his brains.

"Ah... no." Pam needlessly replied. Then, unbelievably, Rolf turned to the poorly shaved Vincent and asked him "Do YOU have a coat hanger?"

Vince was still dazed from the explosion and addled from the drugs they'd given him in the ER, but even HE thought it was a stupid question.

Rolf realised he had to figure out some other way into Pam's car. Then he noticed a brick lying nearby. Then Pam noticed him noticing it.

But Pamela wasn't quite quick enough. Her loudly shouted "NO ROLF!" was more or less drowned out by the alarming sound of shattering glass.

Sadly Rolf's breaking of her car window came only seconds after Pamela found her keys. They had just slipped inside the lining of her purse.

Ch.17 He decided to do it. Mr. Mole rushed from his hiding place. Or at least he tried to. But his badly cramped legs would have none of it.

Mr. Mole rushed to surprise the crumpled child's sock that he thought he'd been hired to follow but his legs gave out and he fell forward...

...hitting his head rather soundly on the dryer and knocking himself out. The sock, who he believed to be a hamster, failed to react at all.

Ch.18 Janet wasn't the most patient hamster. Now that she'd decided to kill Rolf, she wanted it done. But she'd heard nothing from the mole.

She decided that the mole was unreliable. If she wanted to find the hamster and kill him she had to do it herself. Now was the time to act!

But where to look for Rolf? She knew he loved cafe americanos, which he insisted on calling "allongés" after that week he spent in Montreal.

That was as good a place to start as any. She'd search all the cafes and when she found him drinking his beloved allongé she would kill him.

Ch.19 As Rolf brushed the broken glass from the driver's seat of Pamela's car he felt something akin to guilt. It was a new feeling for him.

He wasn't sure what to do with it,the feeling that is. The broken glass he dumped in the ashtray. Pam stared at him. Did she want something?

An allongé! He'd treat Pam to an allongé. That might sweeten her mood. But he thought he'd probably have to buy one for the burned guy too.

So Rolf drove Pam's car, without her asking, to his favorite cafe and bought the three of them allongés that two of them really didn't want.

Vincent didn't drink coffee because he already felt pretty jittery most of the time. And this morning's explosion really hadn't helped any.

So he wasn't real happy sitting, drinking his "allongé" and watching Rolf try to charm Pam. The upside was, Rolf wasn't having much success.

"Gee Pammy, I said I was sorry. But it WAS kinda your fault for losing your keys." Pam sat and stared at him. "How's your allongé? Good eh?"

Ch.20 Mr. Mole awoke on the laundry room floor lying next to a child's sock and not a hamster as he had previously and incorrectly surmised.

He wondered how Rolf had managed to give him the slip. He was obviously a wily opponent. This case might really test his detectiving skills.

Janet had told him that Rolf really really liked coffee. Mr. Mole thought about that for a minute or two. He wondered... Yes! That was it!

Mr. Mole got into his car, which he liked to call the Molemobile, and raced to the nearest cafe. It happened to be the one with Rolf in it.

Ch.21 Janet wondered why she'd hired a detective. Rolf wasn't hard to find. There he was, sitting in a cafe with a vole and...what was that?

She stood over their table glaring. "Who's the vole?" she asked Rolf. "I'm a field mouse" interjected Pam. "Same difference." Janet snorted.

Then, turning to Vincent, she looked him up and down said "What the hell happened to you? Get stuck in a garburator?" Vincent was awestruck.

She was the most beautiful hamster he'd ever seen. His feelings for Pamela? Gone. Henceforth he would devote his life to making Janet happy.

Janet wondered why the little mangled guy was staring at her with such a goofy look on his face. It was distracting. She had to stay focused.

She was there to kill Rolf, not check on the well-being of the local hamsters. If that's even what this guy was. It was pretty hard to tell.

Ch.22 Just as Janet was attempting to re-focus on her desired need to kill Rolf, and Pam and Vincent were quietly drinking their allongés...

and Rolf was blithely sipping his, the myopic, gun wielding Mr Mole barrelled right into the cafe and knocked over a display of travel mugs.

The mole hit the display stand, stumbled, spun, staggered, and then fell. As he made contact with the floor, his gun popped out of his paw.

The gun skidded across the floor and came to rest right at Janet's feet. She looked down. Then she looked up at Rolf's handsome, goofy face.

She liked his face, the dark beady eyes,the soft sleek fur,the impeccably groomed whiskers, the clueless expression. She picked up the gun.

Ch.23 Pam may have been surprised when Janet confronted them at the table but she was more surprised by Mole's spectacular crashing entrance.

It startled her but Pam was not a particularly skittish field mouse. She quickly and wisely focused her attention on the gun in Janet's paw.

It was pointed directly at a quivering and confused Rolf. He sputtered "J-Janet? Janet? What...?Why? Huh?" Considering the fact that he...

...had come to see Pamela for the expressed purpose of investigating if Janet was going to kill him, his confusion was a little surprising.

But he was not too bright and easily confused. Pam, however, was a scientist. She tended to focus on a problem and then look for a solution.

The only possible solution she could see in this situation was to get the gun out of Janet's paw. So that is exactly what she tried to do.

Ch.24 Rolf was not particularly brave, even for a hamster, and so when Janet pointed the gun at him his reaction was not really surprising.

He cowered. And he chose to do his cowering under the table. This was not unwise but it really did not show him in the best possible light.

Even the usually timorous Vincent was showing more courage. Although the hamster was scared out of his wits he remained seated at the table.

That may have been due, at least partly, to the constricting bandages in which he was swathed. But there he sat, staring at Janet & the gun.

Two of the three allongé-drinking rodents at the table now fell under the thumb of the gun-toting Janet. Or would have, if she had had thumbs.

Ch25 Mole meant to have his holster tightened that very morning. Now, watching his gun skid across the floor, he cursed his procrastination.

It looked like one of the blurry shapes across the room may have picked it up."This can't be good" he thought "I bet it's that sneaky Rolf!"

Mole really didn't like that guy. His head still hurt from the incident in the laundry room and he blamed Rolf for it. Slowly he stood up...

and steeled himself. Then he sprung up on his toes and sprinted at his top speed towards the somewhat hazy group of shapes across the room!

Janet enjoyed irony but she didn't enjoy it when the detective she had hired to find Rolf, tackled her just as she was about to shoot him.

Mole, who was not stupid, knew, the second he made contact, that Janet wasn't Rolf. But there was little he could do about it at that point.

It was bad enough that he knocked Janet down but what made it worse was that when the gun hit the floor the second time it fired and the...

bullet, perhaps predictably, travelled in a straight line across the table, between Pamela and Rolf, and lodged itself in poor old Vincent.

Ch.27 Maybe if Pamela hadn't been grabbing Janet's gun paw exactly when Mole barrelled into her, the bullet might not have even hit Vincent.

But she was and it did. It pierced the bandages on his shaved and burned little torso. But luckily the bullet hit nothing of any real value.

But Vince was quite attached to his body. So even the tiny "useless" bit of flesh torn away by the small calibre bullet pained him somewhat.

It was also pretty shocking to see. Pamela, Janet and Mr. Mole were all on the floor, or on their way there when Vincent got hit but Rolf...

crouched as he was under the table, right next to the ill-starred hamster, got a very good view of his wounding and it scared him even more.

It scared him so much that he scurried away from the table, out the door and into the street, as fast as his 4 little legs could carry him.

Ch.28 Wrestling someone, who is filled with murderous intent, for control of a loaded firearm on the floor of a crowded cafe requires focus.

That's probably why Pam didn't notice that poor old Vince had been shot. She cared for her assistant and wouldn't knowingly ignore his pain.

She was in a bit of pain herself as Janet was biting down fairly hard on her right paw in an attempt to make her let go of the mole's gun.

But she wasn't about to let go. Pam hadn't known Janet long but she sure didn't feel comfortable with the idea of her wandering about armed.

So with a renewed fervor she ignored her pain, rolled under the table and tried to wrest the smoking firearm from her murderous rival's paw.

As the two hamsters struggled for the gun, Mr Mole, having recovered somewhat from his attempted tackle, lunged at the writhing blurry mass.

He managed to grab hold of Janet's leg which Mole thought belonged to his nemesis. But Rolf, of course, was no longer even in the building.

Ch.29 Rolf was, at that moment, driving away in Pam's car. He didn't feel very chivalrous about it but he really wanted to save his own fur.

So now he was driving very fast towards the airport. This was pointless as he didn't have the means to purchase a ticket to...well anywhere.

But this hadn't yet occurred to him. All he could think at that moment was that he must put a very great distance between himself and Janet.

Rolf was so intent on making his getaway that he was driving significantly over the speed limit. This attracted the attention of a squirrel.

That was rather unfortunate for him because the squirrel in question, Officer Nutt, was a member of the police force and a keen one at that.

Ch. 30 Vince's low moaning alerted the others, Pamela, Janet and Mole, to his distress. Pam let go of the gun and crawled to his assistance.

She was a compassionate vole. Despite Mole's grip on her leg, Janet managed to hold onto the gun. But when she stood up she didn't see Rolf.

She guessed that he'd run away. Not surprising really. But now she was determined to kill him so it was obvious to her what she should do.

Janet, with gun in paw, sped out the door after Rolf leaving Pam with a dilemma. Should she go and try to stop her or stay and help Vincent?

Maybe she still had some feelings for Rolf but poor Vincent was on the floor bleeding. She thought she had better take him back to the vet.

Pamela had a quite a bit of a struggle getting the now twice wounded hamster out to the place where her car was parked. Or had been parked.

Ch.31 Mr. Mole may have been severely myopic but he was also tenacious. He hung onto Janet's leg even as she ran out of the cafe after Rolf.

Tenacity may be a quality of some great value in a detective but it is less than useful when it is applied in pursuit of the wrong suspect.

You could argue that Janet was making the more impressive display of tenacity. She was running down the street with a large mole on her leg.

He was slowing her down. She had to lose him. She stopped running, looked down and said "Why are you still here?" Mole recognised her voice.

"You're not Rolf!" the mole replied. He was genuinely shocked. All this time he had thought it was the evil hamster's leg he had a hold of.

"You are correct." said a very irritated Janet. "Now, let go of my leg." Mr. Mole released his grip. "By the way" she added "you're fired."

He could think of no argument so he sat on the sidewalk watching Janet run away from him. Well, actually she just got blurrier and blurrier.

Ch.32 For the second time that day Pamela was taking Vincent, her trusty lab assistant, to the vet. But this time they had to take the bus.

Because Pam usually drove everywhere she didn't have a bus pass or tickets or really a very clear idea what the fare for one adult vole was.

She had to fumble for change while supporting Vincent who was now too weak to really stand on his own. Then she had to dig out his bus pass.

Even though it was fairly badly singed, much like its owner, the pass still did its job. That is to say, the driver let them get on the bus.

When they got to the hospital, the vet didn't seem surprised to see them again. He just nodded when Pam pointed out Vincent's gunshot wound.

Ch33 Rolf had no explanation as to why he was driving so fast in a car that wasn't his. At least not one that satisfied the police squirrel.

Officer Nutt was not convinced by the hamster's ravings about his life being in danger. "Alright buddy, get out of the car" was all he said.

But Rolf didn't move fast enough to suit the authoritarian squirrel and so he got tasered. Right there in the driver's seat of Pamela's car.

As a rule hamsters do not respond well to large charges of electricity. Sadly, Rolf was not an exception that would prove this to be a rule.

On the ride to the ER Officer Nutt wondered if this would mean another "excessive force" charge in his jacket. "Stupid hamster." he thought.

Ch.34 You could truthfully say that Pam was more than a little surprised to see Rolf rolled into the emergency room handcuffed to a gurney.

"Rolf" she cried out, in a voice pitched much higher than she was used to, startling her even more than it did either Rolf or Officer Nutt.

Why, she wondered,was she so upset to see him like that? Her feelings caught her a little by surprise, as feelings are sometimes wont to do.

"Pammy?" the groggy hamster replied. He was still feeling the effects of his tasering in a fairly major way. He tried to sit up."Where am I?"

"You're in the ER Rolf. What happened?" Pamela asked. "No talking to the prisoner!" interjected a very rude and officious looking squirrel.

"What is he charged with?" Pam queried the squirrel. "Speeding and driving a stolen car" Nutt replied. "Where's my car Rolf?" Pamela cried.

Ch35 A determined and well-armed Janet was still running down the street after Rolf. Sure, she'd slowed somewhat, but she was still running.

But running where? She realised she had no idea which way Rolf had gone. Sprinting out of the cafe, she had turned left mostly on instinct.

Janet stopped running. She stood in the middle of the street with the mole's gun in her paw. She was one confused hamster. Where would he go?

Rolf was not brave. He would try to get as far away from her as possible. Especially now that he'd seen her with a gun clenched in her paw.

"The airport!"Janet cried. "Yes!" He'd head to the airport. If he hopped on a plane to someplace warm he could escape both her and the winter.

Janet thought to herself that Rolf was pretty predictable. She tucked Mr. Mole's pistol into the waistband of her culottes and hailed a cab.

Ch.36 Once Pamela had come to the conclusion that it was Rolf who had stolen her car, she became slightly less concerned for his well being.

But still, she felt something for the confused hamster, lying there handcuffed to the gurney. The question was: what? Not love surely? Lust?

She found that idea pretty disturbing. Was she indeed aroused by the sight of a helpless and shackled Rolf? She had to admit - a little bit.

Why? Pam wondered. Maybe because a fully functioning Rolf was almost always a source of distress. He was just so monstrously self-absorbed.

But there in the ER, separated from the supine hamster only by the nut-fueled bulk of the officious Officer Nutt, she felt a rising passion.

Ch.37 It would not be even a slight exaggeration to say that Vince's day was not going at all well. One could even say it was going terribly.

He lay in the emergency room at the veterinary hospital with quite the multitude of tubes running into and back out of his various orifices.

All alone in his little curtained off cubicle Vince could hear people moving around the room but he could only vaguely discern their shapes.

Being blown up and shot in the same day had been bad enough but now Vincent thought he had been abandoned as well. What had happened to Pam?

He thought he could hear her voice. What was she shouting? Wolf? Was a wolf loose in the building? What else could possibly go wrong today?

Ch.38 Janet paid the cabbie and sprinted into the airport terminal. She was determined to find Rolf. But that was going to prove difficult.

Not matter how on the nose Janet's instincts had been about his intentions, he wasn't there. He was in the ER recovering from his tasering.

Janet didn't know that. So she continued to comb the airport for any sign of a fleeing Rolf. But holding a gun while she did was a mistake.

If one wants to pique the interest of the security agents at the airport there is no quicker way to do so than by brandishing a loaded gun.

Even the sleepiest of security guards is jolted awake by the sight of an angry & armed hamster stalking the terminal in search of her lover.

That was certainly the case for Hamilton Hamster. He had been dozing lightly leaning on a ticket counter when, through his half-open eyes...

...he saw the most beautiful hamster he had ever seen running through the airport and brazenly wielding a gun. That woke him up immediately.

You couldn't really say that he was a particularily conscientious employee but even he thought a gun in the airport was worth investigating.

Ch39 "So," Pamela thought, "If I'm in love with Rolf then..." She really had no clue as to how to finish that sentence. What should she do?

The first thing she had to do, if she wanted to be with Rolf, was get him out of the jam he was in. That meant getting rid of Officer Nutt.

Pam was not violent by nature so it took her a moment or two to work up the will to bash the cop over the head with the fire extinguisher.

It was fairly effective. The squirrel collapsed in a heap on the emergency room floor. Pam dropped the extinguisher. "Now what?"she thought.

Sure, with one blow she had effectively managed to render unconscious and supine the tormentor of her beloved (was that what he was?) ...

but Rolf was still incapacitated and in need of some fairly serious medical attention. Clearly, Pamela hadn't really thought this through.

Ch.40 Vincent wondered what had happened to Pam. Did the wolf get her? Had there been a wolf on the loose in the ER or had he imagined that?

It was an animal hospital after all. They must treat wolves from time to time, and other large animals. He thought about this for a minute.

He was about as helpless as a hamster could be, strapped to gurney, having been blown up and shot. Vincent was in no state to face any wolf.

He was getting really quite agitated. He had managed to convince himself that there WAS a wolf. Suddenly the curtains of his cubicle parted.

"And how are we doing today?" the doctor asked, peering at his notes. It was odd question to ask someone who'd been both blown up and shot.

But Vincent was happy when anyone took an interest in his well-being. It was just such an unusual occurrence. He replied "Fine, thank you."

Ch41 When Hamilton saw Janet running through the terminal with a gun he knew he should give chase but she seemed to moving very fast indeed.

Hamilton didn't like running even in a wheel. It always seemed pointless to him. Luckily airport security had provided him with a golf cart.

To say he hopped into it would not be accurate. He got in. With a slight electric wump the cart lurched forward and Hamilton was in pursuit.

Even though the airport security electric cart could not reach any great speed it was still fast enough to overtake a badly tiring hamster.

The security guard pulled up alongside Janet. He found her quite beautiful. "Was it bad taste to hit on a suspected terrorist?" he wondered.

"Hi there." was the best opening gambit he could manage, awed as he was by the beauty of the gun wielding hamster. He had never done better.

Ch.42 As Pamela stood over the prostrate body of the somewhat less than conscious police officer, she wondered if his uniform would fit her.

Inconspicuously stripping the squirrel naked in the hallway of the veterinary hospital proved a lot easier than Pamela thought it would be.

One thing that worked to her advantage was that there was almost no one in the place and the staff was busy ministering to poor old Vincent.

"Ah Vincent." she thought as she pulled on the squirrel's pants. She asked herself "Should I just abandon him?" "Yes." she answered herself.

Ch. 43 Rolf was confused. Only moments before Pamela had seemed very angry with him for stealing her car and now she was trying to save him.

He thought he'd just add this to the list of things about which he was thoroughly confused. A lot of those things involved the opposite sex.

Rolf decided he wasn't going to worry about it. If Pam wanted to get him out of his current jam what did he care what her motivations were?

"C'mon Rolf!" Pam exhorted as she scurried towards the exit of the hospital, holding up the squirrel's obviously too big pants with one paw.

Obediently. he hurried after her. He was still a bit dazed from his tasing and couldn't understand why she was dressed in the cop's clothes.

Ch44 Pam didn't have a plan. If you'd asked, she could not have explained why she felt it was necessary to dress in the policeman's uniform.

She raced out of the vet's holding up her pants & half-dragging Rolf behind her. There, parked right out front, was Officer Nutt's vehicle.

"Get in!"she shouted. He stood there incredulous. Were they really stealing a police car? Pam got in behind the wheel. Apparently they were.

Rolf opened the passenger side door but Pam yelled "In the back!" He got in and she floored it. The little car spun out of the parking lot.

Ch45 Janet turned to see who was talking. She was surprised to see a golf cart piloted by mustachioed security guard whirring up alongside.

"Hi...uh...umm...what's with the gun?" Hamilton burbled, awed as he was by Janet's overwhelming beauty. She looked down at her paw. Oh yeah.

Janet looked up from her gun and stared at the weird little security guard. Right away she decided he wasn't really worthy of her attention.

Ignoring him she turned and walked away, tucking the pistol into the waistband of her harem pants, thinking she wouldn't need it anytime soon.

But Hamilton didn't like being ignored. He had a somewhat inflated sense of his own importance and folks like that don't take snubbing well.

It was his pride that caused him to make a fairly serious mistake. He hopped (sort of) from his wee cart and grabbed hold of Janet's sleeve.

Even for a hamster, Janet had quick reflexes and so she dropped Hamilton on his furry little butt before he had any idea what was happening.

Ch46 Vince slipped quietly off to sleep. The drugs they gave him were quick and effective and in the wink of an eye he was off to dreamland.

Dreamland was not at all restful for poor Vincent. In a series of tormented dreams he was chased by a wolf with the improbable name of Rolf.

What was worse was that his beloved Pamela seemed to be romantically entangled with the wolf. Vince was firmly against inter-species dating.

Well, given an opportunity, he certainly would be more than okay with one particular hamster dating one particular very pretty field mouse.

Even in poor old Vincent's hazy drug-induced dreams Pamela took no real interest in him.But unfortunately the malevolent wolf certainly did.

The dream was terrifying, the details too horrible to relate,suffice to say when Vince awoke in the recovery room he was not at all relaxed.

Chap.47 So Pamela, who had just committed a physical assault on an officer of the law, was speeding away in a stolen police cruiser with...

...a wanted fugitive stowed away in the backseat.She realised that her research on hard soil would probably never get finished at this rate.

As she sped away from the vet's Pamela contemplated the hard question raised by her dilemma. "Why had she abandoned her own work for Rolf?"

Driving along listening to his moaning and whining in the back seat she began to think she may have made a mistake. Sure he was cute but...

Now she was jeopardizing her career. Pam was pretty sure funding would dry up when news of her felonies became known. What was she thinking?

She saw the lights in the rear view mirror. The other cops might not like Officer Nutt but they sure weren't okay with his being beaten up.

Ch48 Rolf was more confused than he had been in a long time and that was saying something as Rolf was more often confused than not confused.

He was recovered, more or less, from his tazing but being bundled into a stolen cruiser by a cop-impersonating Pamela was doing his head in.

Was he being kidnapped? What did Pam want with him? Was she in cahoots with Janet? That seemed unlikely to Rolf even in his confused state.

"Uh... Pam?" Rolf tentatively mumbled at his captor. “"h, where... where exactly are we going?" There was no response from the front seat.

Ch.49 Janet was not a hamster who was accustomed to spend a whole lot of time questioning her own actions. Sure, she had vacillated some

...what over the question of whether or not to kill Rolf but dropping the security guard on his ass was, to her way of thinking, a no-brainer.

He tried to get up. Janet hit him again and he stayed down. She stood over his supine form thinking. Time to go. Rolf was somewhere else.

Just for a moment Janet re-considered killing Rolf. Not because she thought it was morally wrong or because her feelings had changed but...

...because it was starting to seem like way too much work. Frankly she was a little tired of gallivanting all over the city looking for him.

And maybe this was an opportunity to change her behaviour. Maybe she didn't have to be a slave to this impulse. She could just let him live.

Ch50 Vince was a conscientious employee. So when he finally managed to clear his head a bit, he began to worry about getting back to work.

He felt like he'd left the lab in a bit of mess. What with the explosion and the fire. He wanted to get back and clean up so Pam could work.

Vincent knew he would never be a great scientist. He didn't have that kind of brain. But he thought Pamela did and so he wanted to help her.

He admired her greatly. Vincent thought she had the kind of mind that very few possessed. Maybe one in a generation. Plus she was so pretty.

"I must get out of here" Vincent said out loud to no one in particular but a nurse on the other side of the curtain responded. "You can't."

But he didn't know a nurse was outside the curtain. He just heard "You can't" in a deep baritone voice and assumed God was speaking to him.

Chapter 51 Pam wasn't sure what to do. Should she just pull over? She was pretty sure she couldn't outrun the police in her sad little car.

She'd always been a law abiding vole. Maybe they would take that into account. There was only the one assault on a police officer after all.

Pam pulled the car over. She knew she wasn't built for life as a fugitive. She was a scientist and she just wanted to get back to her lab.

The police officer looked in the window of Pam's car and saw Rolf crouching in the back seat. He matched the description of Nutt's assailant.

The cop drew her weapon and tapped it on the glass. "Get out of the car." she commanded. Pam started to open her door. "You stay put Ma'am."

The cop assumed that Rolf was the only guilty party in the vehicle and Pamela, who had an air of quiet respectability, was an innocent dupe.

Recently the cop had been burned by an ex-boyfriend who not only lied and cheated on her but who also bore a startling resemblance to Rolf.

Ch.52 Janet decided to go home. She just wanted to put all this killing business behind her. She had, she believed, offed her last paramour.

But her assault on Hamilton the security guard in the middle of the airport had drawn some negative attention from the local authorities.

When Janet came out of the terminal and attempted to hail a cab she was surprised by a swarm of cops who promptly bundled her off to jail.

Chapter 53 Vincent had always assumed that God would have a deep speaking voice. Something authoritative and, for no real good reason, male.

Like many hamsters of his generation he had never been very religious but he still wasn't inclined to disregard the imprecations of a deity.

God was telling him, and rather forcefully at that, to stay put. This forced sojourn in the ER must, therefore, be part of some great plan.

Vincent wanted to get back to Pamela in the lab but, he thought, if God wanted him to lie on a gurney then he should probably just do that.

Ch54 A dazed and confused Rolf got out of the back of the stolen cruiser and presented himself to the cop. He was trying to be co-operative.

He had no idea of the romantic history of the police officer detaining him and so he was unprepared for her, to him, unfathomable hostility.

Rolf was quite confused by the cop's demand "OK Stanley keep your paws where I can see 'em". He looked around. "Who's Stanley?" he wondered.

Rolf quickly realized she was talking to him.He assumed Stanley must be some sort of cop slang and he also assumed it was not complimentary.

Rolf was afraid. A lot of the females of his species seemed ill-disposed towards him. This cop was only the latest addition to that number.

Chapter 55 The Passion of Pamela #twovel: She sat behind the wheel of the stolen cruiser whilst the cop cuffed Rolf and stuffed him into...

...the back of her own cruiser. Pam expected to be arrested along with her (what should she call him?) friend. After all, she had stolen it.

"Excuse me Officer?" she asked mildly, still sitting in the stolen police cruiser. "Should I get out now?" The cop slowly turned towards her.

The cop, Officer Sandy, motioned for her to get out of the car. "You can go Ma'am. You're safe now." she said. Pam was thoroughly confused.

"But I..." she started to explain and then stopped herself. Did she really want to try and save Rolf? Maybe it was better to just walk away.

She wanted to get back to the lab and her research and she should probably check on Vincent. Yes, poor Vincent. She'd kind of abandoned him.

Chap56 Luckily Pam had her bus pass with her and so she was able to get on a crosstown bus almost immediately and head back to the hospital.

Vincent was surprised to see her but assumed that her re-appearance in his life now was all part of God's great and mysterious (to him)plan.

"Hello Vincent, are you feeling any better?" Pam asked the supine and fairly battered hamster. She hoped he was doing better than he looked.

With some difficulty the wounded hamster raised himself up on the gurney and made as if to get up. "I ready to go back to work Pam" he said.

"Are you sure?" Pam asked. He nodded. "Ok" she said "Let's get you out of here." Vincent thought he might like God's new plan a lot better.

Ch57 The jail was small and there was no real separation between male and female prisoners. That's how Janet ended up in a cell next to Rolf.

"Hello Rolf" "Uh... hello Janet" That was it. They just looked at each other through the bars. Neither could think of anything else to say.

As they sat on the cots, face to face and separated only by the mesh of the cage, Janet began to feel less sure about her plan to kill him.

He looked kind of pathetic. And yet, somehow, cute. She was confused. Why did she like him? What strange hold did this hamster have on her?

Ch58 Rolf, emboldened somewhat by the bars separating them, asked what he had been afraid to ask: "So Janet, do you still want to kill me?"

She said nothing and, despite the fact that he thought he'd be safe in his own cage, he was more than a little worried for a moment or two.

He really liked Janet & while her homicidal urges were not necessarily a deal breaker they gave him pause as they were pointed right at him.

He wondered what she was thinking as she stood there staring at him. "No, I guess I don't want to kill you anymore." That was what she said.

But did he believe her? Was this some clever ploy to get him to let down his guard? He was well aware that she was much smarter than he was.

"I guess it doesn't matter what I want." Janet said "Right now, I'm not in a position to do anything to you." But Rolf still looked worried.

Chapter 59 Pam and a somewhat battered Vincent were back in the lab hard at work on her research and all seemed right in their world again.

She watched the scarred, bandaged and partially hairless lab assistant pipet fluids into an Erlenmeyer flask. "He looks happy." she thought.

And Pam was happy. They were both happy. The events of the past few days were receding in memory and Vincent's scars were beginning to heal.

Her research was going well. The secret to breaking through hard soil in winter lay, not so much with temperature,but with moisture content.

She watched the scarred, bandaged and partially hairless lab assistant pipet fluids into an Erlenmeyer flask. "He looks happy." she thought.

And Pam was happy. They were both happy. The events of the past few days were receding in memory and Vincent's scars were beginning to heal.

Her research was going well. The secret to breaking through hard soil in winter lay, not so much with temperature,but with moisture content.

If she could just find a simple way to add water to dirt, it wouldn't be so hard to dig through and life would become easier for all voles.

Her problem was that the dirt was hardest in the winter when the water was frozen. It was proving difficult to force ice cubes into the soil.

How were the field mice going to carry ice cubes around? Most of them had no pockets. Was she going to have to invent an insulated backpack?

Ch.60 Most of Vincent's fur had grown back. It was missing only around his worst scars. When he looked in the mirror he saw a hamster again.

But what worried him was what did Pamela see when she looked at him? Did she just see some scruffy hamster who happened to be her assistant?

That wasn't how he wanted to be seen. He wanted her to see him as dashing and maybe a bit dangerous. But not in a way that was at all scary.

How could he get her to take him seriously as a possible romantic partner? He looked across the lab. She was so fetching in her white coat.

Pam was passionate about science. Her research was very important to her. So, he reasoned, if she were impressed with him as a scientist...

… she would be impressed with him as a hamster and immediately, or almost immediately, want to date him. Vincent set about impressing her.

Ch.61 Pamela thought to herself: "What is up with Vincent?" Her assistant had been acting strangely lately, even more strangely than usual.

Everytime he did something he called her attention to it. "Oh Pam I finished washing those beakers." or "Hey, I wiped that counter already!"

Previously he had gone about his work fairly silently, with little in the way of fanfare. Pam was finding this new Vincent quite irritating.

In fact, she was considering firing him but she felt guilty about his injuries.Whenever she looked at him, scarred and patchy, she felt bad.

Was he holding her back? Sure, he was incompetent and he HAD become more irritating but really, was this negatively impacting her research?

Chapter 62 Vince thought things were going well and his plan was clearly working. Pam was starting to notice all the good work he was doing.

"Yes Vincent" she would say whenever he pointed out something he had done correctly.He thought he detected a hint of admiration in her tone.

But when to make his move? Had her view of him changed sufficiently? How would she react to romantic overtures from her lowly lab assistant?

Vince decided the time was now. He booked a table at a restaurant and that morning, before going in to the lab, he put on his "sexy" bowtie.

Tonight was the night! He decided he would order a nice bottle of wine and after they had enjoyed a glass he would declare his love for her.

Ch.63 Pam was a bit concerned. Vince was acting even more strangely than usual that morning & he was wearing the oddest tie she'd ever seen.

When he trundled out to get the mail she thought again about letting him go. Could she carry on alone or did she really need to replace him?

Pamela had to admit, if only to herself, that there was a small part of her that was kind of fond of Vincent. But it was a VERY small part.

Mostly what she felt was pity mixed with irritation. Pam thought that now it was time for him to go. Just then he walked back into the room.

He had a goofy look on his little hamster face and he was brandishing an open envelope and some kind of card. Was it the grant notification?

Ch64 Vince was beside himself with excitement when he saw the contents of the lab's mailbox.There was an envelope addressed to Pam AND him!

"Look Pam! WE got mail!" Vincent's voice went up an octave. "An invitation! To a wedding!" Pam was incredulous. She thought "Who in the...?"

He handed her the invitation: In weird flowery italics it said "Please help us celebrate the Blessed Union of ROLF & JANET, on Saturday..."

Pam was taken aback. "Why on Earth ...?" she said aloud. "They must really love each other." Vincent answered her rhetorical half-question.

But Pam wasn't confused by their decision to get married, as odd as that was, she was wondering why they'd included Vince on HER invitation.

"What should we get them? Want to go shopping together tonight? Maybe...”"Vincent paused and gathered his courage "... after a nice dinner?"

Chap.65- Rolf was pretty excited about his upcoming nuptials and he had finally put to bed his fear that his fiancee was trying to kill him.

Sure he still slept with one eye open but that sprang more from a fondness for Metallica than any concern about her past homicidal impulses.

Preparations for their wedding took up a lot of his energy. He had no idea it'd be so much work! Was this a good move for someone so lazy?

If he was truly honest with himself the thing about his wedding that excited him the most was his new tuxedo. He looked truly amazing in it!

As Rolf stood in front of his full-length mirror and straightened his tie for the umpteenth time, he thought to himself "Damn, I look good!"

He saw Janet walk into the room behind him. Boy, she sure was hot and he sure was lucky! Hmm, she had something in her hand. What WAS that?

Ch.66 Pamela wasn't the kind of field mouse who was inclined to panic, but right now she felt something a lot like panic arising within her.

Dinner with Vincent? And Pam could tell by the moony look in his eyes that it wasn't just dinner. "We are NOT going." She said emphatically.

The look on Vincent's pointy little face gave her pause. She was fond of him in a way but she certainly had no interest in him romantically.

"I mean..." Pamela started "I am FOR SURE not going." He looked crushed. "But I guess you could go ...alone. If you wanted. Athough why..."

She didn't finish her sentence. He stood there, open-mouthed, staring. Not a good look for him. Pam turned back to her work. They were done.

Ch.67 To say that Vincent was disappointed by Pamela's response would be a massive understatement. He stood agape in the middle of the lab.

"You don't want to go?" he asked, incredulous. He felt his opportunity slipping away as the invitation dropped from his paw onto the floor.

"No" she said not even looking up. "But isn't Rolf..." he paused "your friend?" In fact Vince could think of no one else who might qualify.

No one ever visited her at work. Except Rolf. He never heard her talk about friends. Vince had hoped she was just lonely enough to date him.

But now Vincent realised that this was not the case. Pamela was a vole with a passion but it was a passion for her work. He was out of luck.