a long, long time ago, there were no rats on the island kosrae. rat lived up in heaven. she lived with god. her job was to tend a huge field of sugarcane. rat was god's helper in his house and garden. she was fast and smart and always did as god asked. for these reason, god liked her a lot and they got along well.
God decided to go away on a short trip. only one day. he didn't think that would be problem. so he asked rat to watch over the sugarcane. "oh yes," she said. " i will take the best care of your field that anyone could ever take." Rat went to the great field and lay down among the plants to rest. the she heard a strange noise, just louder than a whisper: "shuush, shuush, shuush." she stood up and looked around. but she couldn't see where the sound was coming from. so she lay down and waited. again the noise came. or was it just the breeze breathing heavily in the cane?

this time she stood up as fast as she could . she would catch that noise-maker! but as far as she could see there was nothing unusual, just a sea of green cane. she began to walk down the rows of plants. she got down on her knees and searched the ground. then she stuck her nose between the rows of plants. she sniffed the warm air. but all she found were huge, ripe stalks of cane.

the noise became louder and louder! "scritch, scritch, scritch." rat put her ear up against a stalk of sugarcane. slowly she walked around it. when she reached the place where it was loudest, she stopped. Gently, she leaned her ear against the cane. the noise was still louder!

what did rat do? what would you have done? well, rat needed to find out what was so loud. it must be inside that stalk. so she bit the cane stalk right where the noise was coming from. what s surprise. oh sweetness! what a delicious taste in her mouth! this new taste was so sweet she kept on chewing, chewing chewing, while she looked for what was making the noise. at last she discovered a tiny worm, so tiny she could barely see it.

rat was very upset. what if the worm destroyed the entire field? she would have to check every stalk of cane for worms. if she found one, she would kill it. besides, the cane was so sweet in her mouth. so she began to chew. stalk after stalk, she chewed through the sugarcane field. she had many sharp teeth and was able to work very fast. every single stalk of cane feel down flat. now the sugarcane field looked like a sea of broken green sticks.
after all that chewing and eating, she had found only one worm. that was the tiny worm she saw on the very first plant. she saved that worm to show to God. it was proof of how the worm had nearly destroyed the field. had it not been for her, the worm would have ruined everything! god would be happy with her. when god returned, the field of tall, healthy cane was a flat as if a typhoon had roared through. not a single stalk of sugarcane was standing! God rused to find rat. Rat began to explain, " a terrible thing almost happened. there was a noise in the cane. a worm was chewing up everything. if i hadn;t searched and found that worm. the whole field could have been destroyed!"

of course, rat had ruined the entire field all by herself. god was so upset he yanked out her many teeth. he rammed two sticks of wood into her lower jaw. this was her punishment. now she would be unable to destroy anything else. and this is how she is today, with only two long teeth in er mouth.
god was so angry he didn't want her near him anymore. he put her in a basket and lowered er all the way to earth. the basket twisted and spun at the end of the very long rope. rat cried as she left heaven. but God didn't change his mind.
rat landed on the green. mountainous island of kosrae. what a relief to climb out of the small basket at last. slowly she made her way to the village of Lelu. but she wanted to be alone, away from people. she need to think things over. she went to mutun nenea and climbed onto a big rock now called rat's rock. many changes of the moon passed and then her life began to change. she got pregnant and had a beautiful baby girl. it was a human girl, with long hair and pretty brown skin. she looked just like the other kosraeans. the girl grew up in secret- no one knew she was there.
one day, rat's daughter went down to the ocean to bathe. she always did this in secret, as her mother had demanded. rat;s daughter had very, very long hair. it was longer than two women are tall. when she swam, the currents pulled it out the sea like a giant fishing net. but this day the kind of kosrae was paddling by on his was from tafunsak village to his home in lelu. the beautiful girl didn't know the was watching her. the sun sparkled in her wet hair. 'steer toward shore," the king ordered his people. "take her on board." the instant the beautiful girl sat dripping in his canoe, her long hair trailing overboard, the king decided he was going to marry her.
this was the beginning of the rat clan on kosrae. it is said that this girl was the most beautiful of all the king's wives. it is also said that long ago, the rat clan had t prettiest people on kosrae. today people are not sure who is a descendant of the clan. perhaps, just perhaps, you are one.

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