“Isn’t this just…electric cruelty?” said Ms. Muscovy. “How much electricity are you putting through these rats?”

Dr. Sputtersnipe proudly tapped on one of the gilded cages. “The scale goes up to two blocks, but we don’t usually subject them to more than about one block.”

Ms. Muscovy cocked a skeptical eyebrow. “A block? How much, pray tell, electricity makes one block?”

“Well, a block is approximately 5.5 blockettes,” the doctor said.

“And 5.5 is a standard measurement, is it?”

“We thought it was 5 even at first, but we had to revise our estimate as we got better instruments.”

“And how many amps are in a blockette?” said Ms. Muscovy.

“Well, that’s apples and oranges, you see,” replied Dr. Sputtersnipe. “The blockette is a measure of electric potential.”

Muscovy grunted. “How many volts, then?” she snapped.

“Well, again-”

“Stop trying to confuse me,” Ms. Muscovy said. “Just relate this unit you are coursing through the experimental rats to something the rest of us are familiar with–volts, watts, joules, what have you!”

Dr. Sputtersnipe shrugged. “We’re not really sure,” he said. “But we do know that if you run 2 blocks of power through a rat, it becomes a squishy living goo. Let me show you in the airtight containment cage.”

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