Nigel Ratburn and Serenity Ratburn (née Sweetwater) are a middle-aged married couple living in Elwood City. They both have experience in the education industry, and served as Third Grade teachers at Lakewood Elementary for a while.

Ratburn and Sweetwater's relationship began as a secret passionate love affair at Lakewood Elementary, where they both worked as teachers. They had to keep their relationship a secret because inter-species relationships were extremely taboo and could get them fired. Their relationship was revealed first seen in September 2014, although it is unknown how long they were together before that issue.


September 2014Edit

During the beginnings of their relationship, Ratburn and Sweetwater met secretly in the teachers' lounge. Sweetwater was anxious about getting caught together, and her fears were realized when George Lundgren stumbled across the couple kissing in the teachers' lounge.[1]

Ratburn urged George not to reveal their secret to the rest of the school,[2] and George decides to use this to his advantage. George blackmails Mr. Ratburn into being his slave in return for his secrecy. Meanwhile, Miss Sweetwater is worried for the sake of her career, causing emotional stress between the couple.[3]

Soon after, Ratburn and Sweetwater decided to resign together.[4] When they approach Principal Haney about their secret, they are shocked to discover that he is also in a inter-species relationship with Miss Tingley, the secretary. They both agree to not tell anyone of their relationships, although George later announces to Mr. Raburn's class about the secret.[5] Despite the immediate backlash, George's announcement had no lasting effects on anything.

November 2014Edit

In November, Nigel and Sweetwater go on a double date with their fellow inter-species friends Francis Haney and Miss Tingley. However, tensions begin to mount when Tingley senses a rising chemistry between Sweetwater and Haney. Jealous, Tingley confronts Sweetwater about it in the bathroom. The argument ends with Tingley leaving and Sweetwater screaming, suggesting that the two couples are no longer friends.[6]

Sweetwater and Ratburn are briefly seen later in November, when she is asking him if there was anyone before her. It is revealed that Ratburn and Wanda Deegan were at one time married, and they have two children (Prunella and Rubella), who are halfbreeds. This revelation did not seem to bother Sweetwater.

During the Thanksgiving holiday, Sweetwater's parents drop by for a visit. Sweetwater hasn't yet told her parents that she's dating a rat, which causes tensions among the family.[7] Eventually, Nigel and Mr. Sweetwater get in a fight which eventually results in Mr. Sweetwater's heart attack.[8]

Volume 9Edit

Sweetwater and Ratburn are active supporters of the Inter-Species Revolution, as seen in the Revolution four-parter. When the movement's main leaders, Jean-Claude and Renée McBonjour, are assassinated by the Elwood City government, Ratburn steps in to lead the uprising (Revolution, Part 3).

Amidst the revolt, Sweetwater is injured by Mayor Hirsch. After the smoke clears, Sweetwater reveals that the only way to revive her is "true love's kiss." Ratburn's kiss has no effect, but when Francis steps in Sweetwater is revived. This reveals that Francis is Sweetwater's true true love.

Sweetwater breaks up with Ratburn for Francis. She says, "I'm sorry Nigel. It just wasn't meant to be. Farewell." (Revolution, Part 5).


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