Many suns and moons passed and Spike had grown up into a young rat behind the stone walls of the Notre Dame bell tower. He never left the "comfort" of the tower. He was twitchy and ugly, but that didn't stop his loyalty to Nooth, whom he wanted to please.

Whenever he was alone, Spike had companions in the form of enchanted objects, Lumiere, Mrs. Potts and Cogsworth to keep him company.

One morning when Spike was sitting on the balcony when he noticed a bird.

"Shoo! Go away, shoo!" he snapped, scaring the bird away.

That was when Cogsworth and Lumiere came to life.

"It's about time that bird flew away" said the clock. "I'm glad it wasn't my mouth this time."

"Cogsworth, I am shocked at you" replied the candlestick. "I thought you like animals."

"Normally, but birds make me feel stiff."

Spike wasn't paying any attention to them at all, he stared at the city down below.

"What is it, Spike?" asked Cogsworth.

"It's the Feast of Fools" smiled Lumiere.

"What does it look like?" said Spike coldly.

The rat jumped off the balcony and walked back into the bell tower.

You see, Spike was cold just as Nooth raised him, but he still had his insecurities. He has always watched the festival, but he wanted go down there in person. But, Nooth told him that he wasn't normal.

But the enchanted objects decided to cheer him up, despite what might happen.

"As your mon ami and guardians, we insist you attend the festival" said Lumiere.

"Me?" frowned Spike.

"Of course" nodded Cogsworth. "It's a perfect educational experience and lots of fun things for you to do."

Mrs. Potts, being the motherly teapot approached Spike.

"They're right, my child" she said. "Life's not a spectator sport. If watching the festival is all you're going to do, then your life will go by without you."

"And you are an animal like everyone down there" added Cogsworth. "With flesh, hair and a hint of humanity."

Spike began to lose his patience.

"Enough!" he shouted. "Despite your cheerful, foolish encouragement, you are all forgetting something!"

"What's that?" asked the objects.

"My master... Nooth."

"Oooh! Yeah. That's right."

Though they never interacted with Nooth, the objects detested him for his cruelty towards Spike.

"We know when you say he, um, how do you say, forbidden from leaving the bell tower, he means never ever ever" Lumiere said nervously.

"Are you joking?! He hates the Feast of Fools!" Spike replied. "He'd be furious if I ever asked him."

"Oh, son, who said you have to ask?"

"You don't mean...?"

"It's just for one afternoon" said Mrs. Potts softly. "Nooth will never know you left the tower."

"And if I get caught? He'll see me!"

"You could wear a disguise" insisted Lumiere.

Spike refused until Cogsworth placed a hand on his shoulder.

"Come on, nobody wants to be cooped up here forever."

And with that, Spike stood up with a determined smile.

"You lads are right!" he said. "I'll go!"

The objects cheered as they followed Spike through the hallway.

But then, Nooth appeared.

"Good morning, Spike" he said grimly.

Spike stopped and tried to act as if he never said anything, the objects froze in place.

"Mornin', boss" gulped the rat.

"My dear boy, whom ever are you talking to?" asked Nooth.

"No-no-no one, expect my friends."

"Ah, yes. Your stone friends. But can stone talk?"

"No, it can't."

"That's right. You're a smart lad, Spike. Now... lunch."

Twitching nervously, Spike scattered off and retrieved silver chalices and plates for them.

"Shall we review your alphabet today?" asked Nooth, with an icy smile.

"No, sir. I'm good, thanks."

"What a shame."

As Nooth started pouring red wine into their chalices, Spike twitched nervously and tried to pleasing as possible. But as soon as Nooth took a sip...

"I never should have thought of the festival" Spike mumbled to himself.

Nooth spat out his drink in response, the wine landed on Spike, who yelped.

"I beg your pardon?" frowned Nooth.

"I-I-I meant I never should have thought of asking for your forgiveness" answered the rat, trying to cover his mistake.

"You said something about a festival. And you were thinking of going to this year's festival!"

"It's just... You go every year."

Spike followed Nooth out to the balcony where they stared at the festival, where people were dancing and laughing.

"I am a public official and I must go!" Nooth glared. "But I do not enjoy a moment of it."

Nooth had to remind Spike that the festival is a shallow, drunken stupor with thieves, hustlers and the dregs of all creature kind. Spike gulped at the mention of it.

"Spike, when your cruel mother abandoned you as an infant, anyone else would have killed you" lied Nooth. "And this is the thanks I get for raising you as my own?"

Hearing this, Spike frowned, his ears lowered. He was heartbroken at the moment of the 'abandoning' story Nooth had always mentioned to him.

"You don't know what it's like out there" continued Nooth. "But I do..."

Then, he started to sing.

"The world is cruel

The world is wicked

It's I alone whom you can trust in this dark city

I am your only friend

He placed a finger under Spike's tiny chin, making the rat nervous.

"I who keep you, teach you, feed you, dress you

I who look upon you without fear

How can I protect you, lad

Unless you always stay in here?

Away in here

Spike climbed onto Nooth's open hand and the human brought him back to the bell tower.

"Remember what I told you, Spike" warned Nooth.

"You are deformed

And you are ugly

And these are crimes for which the world

Shows little pity

You do not comprehend

Spike flinched at the mention of the reminder that he is truly deformed and ugly, then Nooth stood over the table.

"Out there, they'll revile you as a monster

Out there, they will hate with scorn and jeer

Why invite their calumny and consternation?

Stay in here, be faithful to me

Grateful to me

Do as I say, obey

And stay in here"

He lowered Spike to the table and then walked away.

"Ah, o-o-okay, sir" stammered Spike. "I'll stay in here. You are very good to me. Sorry."

"You are forgiven" answered Nooth, heading towards the stairs. Then, he stopped to face Spike.

"Oh, and remember, Spike" he said.

"Yes, sir" frowned Spike.

"This is your sanctuary" they said together in unison.

"Good lad" smiled Nooth evilly as he left.

Spike sighed and stared at the ground.

"Sanctuary" he repeated.

Sure, Nooth was 'good' to him, but he still had his dreams.

The young rat knew all his life that he watched people down below him and oh, how he wanted to be part of them, even if it was for one day out there.

To be continued...