Fantastic Fables by Ambrose Bierce: The Compassionate Physician
The Compassionate Physician
A KIND-HEARTED Physician sitting at the bedside of a patient afflicted with an incurable and painful disease, heard a noise behind him, and turning saw a cat laughing at the feeble efforts of a wounded mouse to drag itself out of the room.
"You cruel beast!" cried he. "Why don't you kill it at once, like a lady?"
Rising, he kicked the cat out of the door, and picking up the mouse compassionately put it out of its misery by pulling off its head. Recalled to the bedside by the moans of his patient, the Kind- hearted Physician administered a stimulant, a tonic, and a nutrient, and went away.