Rudyard Kipling’s Rikki-Tikki-Tavi is the story of a brave little mongoose. First published in 1895, the tale is rich with the flavor of colonial India. The young mongoose, who has nearly perished in a flood, is rescued by Teddy and his parents. Rikki-Tikki-Tavi, as the mongoose is called, is allowed to sleep in Teddy’s bed, as mongooses can fend off the poisonous snakes that sometimes slither into the house from the garden. In the morning, Rikki learns from Darzee, the tailor-bird, that the cobra Nag has eaten one of the little tailor-birds. Nag slithers out of hiding to face down the mongoose. Nag and his wife Nagina consider themselves the owners of the bungalow and its property, threatening to destroy the family. Meanwhile, Rikki proves his strength by killing another poisonous snake, and the family applauds his valor. An epic battle between Rikki, Nag and Nagina ensues, with Rikki protecting Teddy, and destroying the eggs of the evil cobra pair. Victorious, Rikki assumes the role of family protector. Generations of readers have relished this story of triumphant goodness by a lovable animal.