Meanwhile, in another part of the forest, the light from a Goblin Lamp illuminated a snowy path to Prunella Fig-Pink's cottage. There were blackened sticks that lined the pathway and seemed to beckon like many crooked old fingers. Old bottles clacked together in the night wind that were tied to the leafless tree branches. Their sounds were jagged and warning, and threatening to break in the frosty darkness..
The pie-rats trudged up this path, pulling their burden of the Thread pusher in an old red wagon. They strained and tugged, smoking tiny clouds of misty breaths into the night. It was hard work, even for the biggest Rats, who had powerful legs and claws. Peg-Leg rode on top of the Thread Pusher, yelling encouragement, and at times vituperative remarks to her minions. "Hurry on," she yelled. "Its freezing out here, you idiots."
Big Punzee strained harder. She was beyond speech at this point and longed to be warm, longed to sleep, and longed to turn and tell her mistress to "shut-up."
Prunella Fig-Pink waited inside. She had been waiting a long time and so waiting for her had become second nature. Waiting for what? you might ask yourself. Prunella had been waiting to have her party. She was waiting and had been waiting for over 15 years for her guests to arrive for a Birthday party that would celebrate her 16th year. She was now 31 years old. She remained in the same dress, with the same party hat, and the same underdrawers, with the same makeup that she wore 15 years ago. The crepe paper streamers were drooping but remained secured to the chandalier in the dining room. They were faded and dusty and stretched to a dull pink. The party hats were still waiting for heads to adorn, prizes were wrapped in faded paper and the cake, which was the masterpiece of the celebration, shaped as a castle, remained uncut in the center of the dining room table. Prunella had to spray it at times for bugs. What had been shocking pink frosting was now mossy green. The punch bowl was still on the side board, but the beet juice beverage which Prunella liked to serve at these kinds of festivities had dried to scum in the bottom of the bowl. But Prunella was very excited. Her guests were about to arrive. They were pulling something very heavy down her pathway in a red wagon, and unless Prunella was wrong, it would be a present for her. Her heart sang. Atlast! Atlast I will have my Party, she thought.