So this was what it felt like when you were being asphyxiated.
Perry hadn't actually been trained for fighting swamp vipers, but he felt he was doing pretty good. He'd filled his lungs with oxygen and tried to make himself take up more space than he needed.
The snake wasn't very pleased. He hadn't expected his prey to be so hard to squeeze to death.
"Food." He hissed.
"Living organism. Trying to survive here." Perry responded.
"No. You are food."
"I'm not sure we're gonna agree anytime soon."
The snake lunged for his face. Perry pushed its neck away.
His arms and his legs were free, but his middle wasn't. And yet the snake was winning. It was a slow process, but Perry knew it was winning.
Desperately he looked for a way out. He was surrounded by trees, but he couldn't just get up and go get a branch to whack the snake on the head with.
How did platypuses even survive in the wild?
"Death." The snake said. "You smell like death."
Perry found it much harder to breathe now. He started gasping for air, even though he knew it wouldn't be of any help.
He started thinking about a nature show Phineas and Ferb had been watching the day before. It was talking about how every single animal had a way to escape from a potentially dangerous situation, whether they were aware of it or not.
Perry kicked the snake in the tail with his hind leg. Something seemed to hook into the snake.
Perry had an extra claw he hadn't known about.
The snake looked surprised for a moment. Then he let out a terrible screech.
"VENOM!" He hissed. "STINGING BURNING VENOM!" He unraveled himself from Perry.
Perry hoisted himself up. The snake bit his leg, but he pulled himself away and ran as fast as he could.
"VENOOOMMMMM!" The snake's call became fainter.
Perry was out of the woodlands and back in his neighborhood. No way was he ever parachuting down in Danville Forest again.
He crawled in through his pet door.
"Hey, Perry." Phineas said. He was sitting at the kitchen table, looking at some blueprints with his stepbrother, Ferb.
"Hey." Perry jumped onto the stool next to his owner.
Phineas gave him a concerned look. "What's with your leg?"
"Yeah, I found out I had a poison claw today. Got in a tiff with a snake. You should have seen me! I nailed him. Literally. With the claw."
"Looks like he bit you."
Perry looked down at his leg. It was swollen. He hadn't noticed the burning pain until now.
"Does it hurt?" Phineas asked. "Should we call a vet?"
"No." Perry lied. "It'll probably get better in a few hours. I've been bit before."
"It looks kind of bad."
"Snakes, snaggletoothed badgers and man are the main enemies of the platypuses. Or platypi. Or platypeople." Ferb said.
"I know what you mean." Phineas said.
Perry climbed down from the chair and started toward the fridge. He fell down in a sudden spell of dizziness.
"Perry, are you SURE you're okay?" Phineas said nervously.
worry. I'm good." Perry pushed himself back up and limped to the fridge. He opened it and pulled out a banana.
"Okay." Phineas said doubtfully. He turned back to his blueprints.
"I hope it wasn't a viper snake." Ferb said. "Vipers have a special kind of venom that can be fatal to their victims."
"You're chatty today." Phineas said.
"Yes, yes I am."
Perry sat down on the floor and peeled the banana, trying to ignore the searing pain in his leg. He didn't want the boys to fear for him.
Ferb handed Phineas a letter that had been on the mail pile on the table.
Phineas tore it open and read it. "OH MY GOSH! I won the local science fair! We won fifteen dollars!"
Ferb pumped his fist in a silent cheer.
"YAY!" Phineas jumped around the table.
"I knew you'd win." Perry smiled.
And fell in a faint on the floor.
Perry revived in his pet bed. Automatically, he turned and looked at his leg.
It had a bandage around it. It still hurt a little.
"You're awake." Phineas was petting him.
"After you passed out, we called your vet. You know, Monogram. He came by and-"
"He doesn't know, does he?" Perry asked.
"No, of course not. Think we were going to tell him or something? No. All we told him was we noticed you had a bite on your leg after you fainted and we thought it was a snakebite. So he treated you for it and stuff."
Phineas huffed. "Yeah, I'm angry. You should have let me call someone the instant you got home. You could have died. He almost didn't get to you in time."
"I didn't want you to worry."
"I'd have worried less if I'd gotten you help right away, and didn't have to listen to about a million He-may-not-make-its."
"I'm sorry." Perry tried to get up.
Phineas pushed him back down. "You're not supposed to get up for twenty-four hours. And you can't eat or drink for that amount of time, either."
Perry frowned. "You shouldn't have told me that. Now I'm hungry and thirsty."
Phineas smiled a little.
"Could you do something for me?" Perry asked.
"You need me to get you something?" Phineas stood up. "There's a coloring book downstairs if you're bored."
"Can you call a vet? Not Monogram, a real vet
just tell them that you found a snake in Danville Forest, and he might need help."
"What? Perry, that snake doesn't deserve help. Not after he almost killed you!"
"Phinny, he was just trying to get a meal. And I did poison him first."
Phineas shook his head. "I can't. Sorry."
"Phineas, he shouldn't have to suffer. Get him help."
Phineas sighed. "Okay. But only because you really seem to want me to."
Monogram came into the room.
Perry froze. Had he heard Phineas talking?
"I need to run a few more tests." Monogram said, holding up his vet bag. "Could you go downstairs, please?"
"I was just leaving." Phineas went around Monogram and left the room.
Monogram closed the door. Then he sat down next to Perry.
"You're lucky to be alive." He said.
"There's no need to worry about work." Monogram continued. "Agent R will take over for you. He's Ralph's son, you know, Rocky. And your blood pressure is back to normal, so you'll be fine. You'll recover quickly."
Great. Crazy Rocky was taking over for him. Perry felt better already.
"I hope your leg stops hurting soon." Monogram said. He stood up and left the room.
Phineas came in a few minutes later. "The vet found the snake and treated him. She says he'll be okay."
"Good." Perry said. He curled up in his bed. "I hate this."
"I do too." Phineas said. "You shouldn't have to go through this. Hey, you want me to turn the TV on?"
"The high-definition one Ferb and I built." Phineas pressed a button, and a television slid down on the wall.
"Okay. Yeah, that'd be nice."
Phineas turned the TV on.
"And now, the show you have all been waiting for, the Carlos the caring clown show! That's right, kids! The world's most popular toy now has his own SHOW! Caring and sharing!"
Phineas changed the channel.
"Next on the Uncovery Channel, the wonderful world of worms!"
"That's gonna make me hungry." Perry said. "But it'll do."
"Okay. Call me if you need anything."
"Will you be able to hear me from downstairs?"
"I meant call me. You have my number."
"Right. I will."
"Okay." Phineas handed him the remote and went back downstairs.
"Worms dig around in the dirt all day." Said the TV. "They recycle nutrients."
"Good for them." Perry said. He wrapped his blanket tightly around himself.
"Some worms can't move on their own. They depend on their environment to move them around. Some worms live in water."
"Knew that already." Perry closed his eyes and fell asleep to the lulling sound of worm facts.