The big mice in black hoods escort Despereaux through the castle toward the rat-infested dungeon. On the way, they pass all the beautiful things Despereaux knows he is leaving behind. They pass all the places where he might have a chance to glimpse the princess—but she does not appear. Despereaux cannot stand the idea that he is just going to disappear and that the Pea will never know what has happened to him. Turning to the mice in black, he asks if they will take him to speak to her one last time.
The mice in black stop, shocked that Despereaux would want to speak to a human....
(The entire page is 435 words.)
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