Tagged: bird

I Have Always Been a Man

  • by jenmistrusted his own senses more
  • What kind of candy was it?
  • I hope they jammed their fingers into him
  • “The Devil’s at the bottom of it, I’m sure.”
  • My arse is killing me.

Tune in next time part 221                           Click Here for Earlier Installments

I have always been a man who mistrusted his own senses more than most people do, largely due to all the mind games and psychedelics my parents employed in my upbringing, but I was sure that there was a candy bar strapped to the leg of Gordon the goose. What kind of candy was it? It was vitally important that I find out. It was likely the key to everything. If Esmerelda had resorted to something as dusty and disused as the washerwoman’s code, it only made sense that the confectioner’s code was also in play.

As the gander continued to rub against Isaac’s pants, I crouched and deftly unstrapped the candy bar from his scaly leg. The wrapper was unfamiliar, but the lettering looked Tibetan. Whoever sent this message, I hope they jammed their fingers into Himalayan mittens before frostbite set in.

Isaac peered at the exotic candy in my hand, her eyes wide. “The Devil’s at the bottom of it, I’m sure.”

“The Devil” is what a lot of people called my father.

Gordon didn’t like being ignored. With a loud honk he nipped Isaac. She yelped and scolded the bird, then stood rubbing her rump. “We need to get out of here, find a place to stow Gordon. My arse is killing me. You’ll need to check it for me to make sure he didn’t break the skin.”

While the thought of examining Isaac’s arse would normally have been quite intriguing, I was currently much more concerned about the chocolate bar in my hand. I remembered John’s childhood spent in the Tibetan monastery. If the message really had been sent by my father, things were very dire indeed.

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The Whispering Waiter Withdrew

  • by jenfour kinds of bird: chicken, turkey, ostrich, and goose
  • “I’m going to tell you something, honey.”
  • very enchanting conversational powers
  • “Ooo boy!”
  • a sleek little black bra

Tune in next time part 129                             Click Here for Earlier Installments

The whispering waiter withdrew. The name he’d given was a familiar one because it was not his. It was instead one of the standard aliases used by the agency. If I had a dollar for every “Graham Crackers” I had met in the course of my career, I’d be able to buy four kinds of bird: chicken, turkey, ostrich, and goose.

I nibbled my smore politely and listened to the gossiping of the arms merchants. Inside my jacket, Tallulah began squeezing again. Her message this time was, “I’m going to tell you something, honey.” She may be the most dangerous woman in the world, but she has very enchanting conversational powers when she’s hidden inside ones clothes, and what she told me — well, honey, I’ll just say that it sent me straight back to the restroom.

“Ooo boy!” she cooed as soon as we were alone again. She quickly stripped the both of us.

It took her a while. Underneath the old man costume she’d had the Svetlana getup, and beneath that was the Tessa disguise. Now she wore only her Tallulah uniform, which consisted of a sleek little black bra and nothing else.

“Lock the door,” she ordered. “We can’t risk my husband walking in on us. Or your wife. Or Graham Crackers.”

She clambered aboard and got down to business before I could tell her the door had no lock.

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Once He Was Barefoot

  • by jenand then await instructions
  • crowned by telephone wires
  • “Sure you gonna go home, Johnny! I know you are.”
  • doctors weren’t able to analyze the semen samples
  • and tell them to be punctual

Tune in next time part 68                             Click Here for Earlier Installments

Once he was barefoot, the enigmatic stranger fished a sheet of paper out of his right moccasin and handed it to me. It was damp with foot-sweat. From the left he fished another note, which he tucked between Svetlana’s lips, making her wrinkle her nose.

“Go to these coordinates once you’ve decoded them, and then await instructions,” the man said as he slipped his feet back into their buckskin sheaths. While he was doubled over I noticed that his head was crowned by telephone wires and the feathers I spotted earlier were actually live birds tethered there.

“I’d rather go home than to your mysterious coordinates, dude,” I said.

“Sure you gonna go home, Johnny! I know you are.” His tone was mocking.

Why did he think I was John? Was it because I was in the company of Svetlana? She was trying to spit the notepaper out of her mouth, presumably to tell this man I was not her brother, but the paper stuck to her lips and tongue, and everything she said was muffled into indistinguishability.

“Things are heating up,” the man said, straightening, and ignoring Svetlana’s sputterings. “Our doctors weren’t able to analyze the semen samples because they were all contaminated with monkey semen.” He smiled briefly. “The samples were contaminated, not the doctors. Anyway, we need to collect fresh samples from everyone, so go to those coordinates, call your team, and tell them to be punctual. We can’t afford another screw-up.” He shook my hand, gave Svetlana a nod, and sprinted down the alley to a waiting limousine.

Svetlana finally spat her paper gag onto the ground and yelled, “This isn’t John!” at the receding black car.

I scooped up her soggy note and stuck it in my pocket along with my own.

“Now, what’s all this about semen?” I asked.

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The Floodgates Were Opened

  • k-avatarIt never ended.
  • were opened three times a day
  • indistinguishable from the rustling of a tree
  • Limping up to the altar
  • graveyards for machines

The floodgates were opened three times a day, to manage the pressure. Beatitude manifested spontaneously in the cold stone building. It never ended. And if it wasn’t bled off on a regular schedule, the strain would become too much for the ornate stained-glass windows to handle.

No one could go inside, of course.  Too intense. Just being within a two-block radius at any of the thrice-daily ventings of surplus divine grace tended to overload most people’s sensibilities. No one lived that close to the cathedral anymore. Respectable businesses couldn’t operate in the hot zone, so the textile district had shifted north, abandoning the old work floors to be graveyards for machines.

I camped under a disused loom in one of the old mills, just yards from one of the huge double doorways that served as relief valves. After two days I felt accustomed to the bizarre climate of the zone, like a mountaineer adjusting to thinner air. But already my skin was raw and my mind was growing brittle. I had to make my move.

I knew the floodgate schedule well, so I was ready when the doors gave forth their gust of rose-scented golden light. I was off to one side, and dashed inside the building after the radiance had diminished, seconds before the doors boomed shut again.

The bird roosted on the pulpit. I couldn’t look directly at it, the glow from its plumage was too dazzling. The pressure was building fast, but I knew that right now it was as low as it ever got. Limping up to the altar, I shut my eyes and groped toward the shining creature. I only needed one feather.

The bird spread its huge wings with a sound indistinguishable from the rustling of a tree. I kept my eyes closed tight and leaned forward until I feared I would lose my balance. I strained to reach the shimmering avian beast.

I only needed one feather.

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Ripples Would Betray Him

  1. k-avatarCharacter – ninja, just one week from retirement
  2. Setting – penguin enclosure
  3. Object – snorkel
  4. Situation – revenge

Ripples would betray him, so there were no ripples.

Shivering would reveal his lack of adaptation to this environment, so there was no shivering.

Oddly, the snorkel didn’t seem to pose a problem.

Swimming among the penguins behind the glass, Jin sought to merge with their graceful motion the way his black garb helped him blend with their distinctive coloration. Swimming, he watched the crowd on the other side of the glass. Watched for them to note something amiss, watched for them to discover that one of the penguins was actually a ninja. Hoped they wouldn’t realize that, in fact, two of them were.

Na must be in here somewhere, too. The one who had dishonored the guild and deflowered Jin’s betrothed. He could only be hiding among the penguins, because Jin knew he wasn’t in any of the other traditional ninja hideouts.

Time was of the essence. Jin and Na were both only a week from retirement, and union rules were very strict about seeking vengeance once a shadow warrior started drawing a pension. But Jin knew he was close, that he need only be patient a little longer.

The time would soon be right. The place was certainly right.

Revenge, after all, was best served cold.

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Everything About Felicity Was All Brown

  • by jenrolled her beautiful eyes
  • like some patient livery cob
  • suddenly declared unlawful
  • no other password
  • the beautiful dog’s friendly attention
  • as plainly as the geese
  • causing an obstruction in the shaft
  • interposed his elegantly marked body
  • in the crepuscular twilight
  • WOW! Is she dragging!
  • such petty jealousies
  • all brown, brown eyes, brown hair

Everything about Felicity was all brown, brown eyes, brown hair, brown tobacco-stained teeth. She wore a brown velour jumpsuit and brown leather boots. Erasmus thought she dressed that way to hide her beauty from the eyes of men, to prevent such petty jealousies as she must have experienced in school when she no doubt turned the heads of her friends’ swains. It was for very similar reasons that Erasmus had covered his body with detailed black tattoos. Such subterfuge did not fool Erasmus, who saw her sensual attractiveness as plainly as the geese flying overhead and honking in the crepuscular twilight saw the small pond in the woods as their pit stop for the night.

“Why must those horrid sentries be causing an obstruction in the shaft?” wailed Felicity.

WOW! Is she dragging! thought Erasmus. Felicity was usually stoic in the face of such disappointment. She must be completely exhausted to break down like that. They knew when they signed up for the Amazing Race that there would be frustrations, but nothing had prepared them for this task, in which they were required to navigate their way through a disused emerald mine in Myanmar. Much to their chagrin, the team had just found themselves back at the entrance and had gone outside for some fresh air and to pet the large black dog that was chained there.

“Are you certain you know no other password?” Erasmus asked.

Felicity rolled her beautiful eyes like some patient livery cob who had lost all patience upon learning that horses had been suddenly declared unlawful.

“If I knew another password,” she grumbled, “don’t you think I would have mentioned it?”

Her despair drew the beautiful dog’s friendly attention, and it demanded to be petted. Erasmus felt a flair of jealousy and interposed his elegantly marked body between Felicity and the animal.

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A Midnight Spot Check

  • k-avatarI have been pregnant for five days
  • carrying a white dove
  • slung the towel over his shoulder
  • a midnight spot check
  • heaved him over a hip
  • and a green hat

A midnight spot check revealed Denise carrying a white dove and a green hat. When asked to explain herself, she said, “I have been pregnant for five days. He slung the towel over his shoulder, and I heaved him over a hip, and that was all it took.”

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Amanda Has Not Moved

  • nothing at all unusual in thisk-avatar
  • countless x-rays
  • normally so motionless
  • the stench of rotten fish
  • the files of the child welfare committee

Amanda has not moved in 17 hours.

There is nothing at all unusual in this, as she is normally so motionless that birds alight on her head and moss grows on her toenails. What is a bit unusual is that the stench of rotten fish hasn’t prompted her to relocate.

The tips are good down here at Fisherman’s Wharf, but not that good. And the freak tide, with its concomitant aroma, has chased off all the tourists anyway.

Amanda’s silver body paint reflects most of the solar heat, but also inhibits perspiration. She must be uncomfortable. She faces the promenade, with Alcatraz in the background. A living photo-op.

Enduring countless x-rays as a little girl must have trained her to keep still. The reason for all those medical images is sealed away in the files of the child welfare committee.

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“Are You Telepathic?”

  • k-avatarand feeling for a zipper
  • and a felt hat like a helmet
  • Are you telepathic?
  • Better than getting drunk!
  • the finest esprit de corps the world has ever known
  • Also 50 yards of extension cord

Are you telepathic?

“No, why do you ask?”

“Because if you were, I wouldn’t have to waste time speaking aloud. But, unless you’re hiding your true abilities behind a bland denial, I suppose speech is going to be necessary.”

“Does anyone ever say yes?”

“One man did once, and elderly fellow with a bow tie and a felt hat like a helmet. I thought about cars at him, and he stumbled away swearing and feeling for a zipper. So I think he was lying.”

“How about you? Can you read minds?”

“Sometimes. Better than getting drunk! But I need two live doves to make it work. Also 50 yards of extension cord.”

Telepaths have the finest esprit de corps the world has ever known.

“I quite agree.”

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Extradimensional Infiltration Won’t Affect Your Cerebral Output

  • k-avatarunless you are using vibrations for bones
  • your cerebral output
  • an irascible, tyrannical old coot!
  • I flipped my cape over him
  • — orbs as you call them —
  • gently adjusted the glasses
  • he gave a muffled buzz
  • as thick as a parrot’s
  • “I’ll never leave you, baby.”

Extradimensional infiltration won’t affect your cerebral output or the function of your eyes — orbs as you call them — unless you are using vibrations for bones or possess feathers as thick as a parrot’s. But that is assuming that all the usual guild-approved apparatus is present. I gently adjusted the glasses which protected my sight-orbs and fluffed my downy feathers. Jones had landed in trouble, not surprising since he is, in fact, a parrot, besides being an irascible, tyrannical old coot! He sat frozen on his perch while I and the other owls prepared for the mission to retrieve his marbles from the cosmic interstices. Occasionally he gave a muffled buzz, especially after I flipped my cape over him. His simple but adoring young — inappropriately young — wife, a very pretty flamingo, said, “I’ll never leave you, baby.” Jones buzzed again, and leaned forward precariously. There was no time to lose.

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