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Love-Nest [Part-One of the Robins' Series]
Day-One of a Shut Up & Write Fable Writing Challenge [Theme - Cleverness] *** "You aren't nearly as clever as you think you are," the Mrs. cajoled.
"I am so clever," the Mr. exclaimed.
"Prove it," the Mrs. challenged. "Build me a love-nest."
"Well, that is almost too easy. Not a challenge at all. Like taking worms from a hatchling," the Mr. rolled his eyes at the simplicity of the so-called challenge.
"Get cracking, then! I have the perfect spot in mind," the Mrs. instructed as she elongated one perfectly formed blush-colored wing toward the most gloriously lush weeping willow tree.
"Aah. Just like you to pick the most challenging of all trees. Don't you worry your pretty little birdbrain, dear. I've gotcha covered," the Mr. grinned, as much as his little pecker allowed him to. He smiled even wider, dropping down into the garden to pluck a ball of fuzz off a dying dandelion. "The foundation is the most important part of any love-nest," he instructed his recent bride. "You just sit back and watch my little pecker do all the work, my little chickadee."
The Mrs. chuckled under her breath as she began preening and smoothing her fluffy down. It was just like a man to always brag about his little pecker. She would sit back and allow him to impress her. Let his beak do all the work. By Lisa H. Owens Inspired by a 5-Day Shut Up & Write Fable Writing Challenge March, 2021 Day-One See: The Bird's Life part-two See: Never A Swan part-three
The Bird's Life [Part-Two of The Robins' Series]
Day-Two of a Shut Up & Write Fable Writing Challenge [Theme - Kindness] *** “You are the grumpiest of the grumpy-grumps,” the Mrs. grouched at the Mr. for the third time that particular morning. “Why is it that I spend all day on the nest, warming and protecting our precious eggs, while you are out galavanting with the Robins? Anytime I ask you to watch over the nest, I get all kinds of attitude,” she chirped.
“It’s not attitude, my sweet buttercup,” the Mr. cheeped. “I may appear to be galavanting, but looks can be deceiving.”
And so it went day after day after day. The Mr. stopping by every few hours to drop her a worm and a peck on the cheek, then soaring off to galavant in the sky with the male Robins, as the Mrs. sat patiently on four perfectly formed lightly speckled-blue eggs. She dreamed of the day when the hatchlings would finally chip their ways through the tough eggshells. Then, it would be the males’ turns to watch the young’uns as the females scouted for plump worms and chattered about the thoughtlessness of their mates. Luckily, for the Mrs. and her female cohorts, Robins did not mate for life. She would move on to greener trees come next spring. This was the cycle of the bird’s life. Choose a mate. Procreate for a season or two. Move on. The moving on part was all she longed for.
The day finally arrived when peck-peck-peck could be detected by the Mrs.’ plump downy underbelly. She hopped up to observe, perching on the fork in the tree which housed the love-nest created for her by the Mr. on their honeymoon. As she waited patiently for her first brood to unveil themselves, she heard cackling and tweeting and one loud honk overhead as a flock began to swarm into Robins’ territory, circling above her love-nest in the lush weeping willow tree.
She was on instant alert, puffing her chic-chick body to twice its normal size. She began using her outsidevoice to warn off the flock of invaders. As a last resort, she would use the old 'injured bird' ruse to lead the oddly mixed variety of what appeared to be dull-feathered female birds, away from her new family. What was up with an invasion of females, anyway? She had never, under any circumstances, known this to happen. As they drew near, she noticed each female held an item in her beak or claw. She began to fret. Where was that good-for-nothing birdbrain when she needed him? She opened her beak to sound the ‘emergency squawk’ when she noticed her good-for-nothing Mr. flying in front of the flock, leading the quasi-vee formation. He had a big grin on his little pecker as he swooped in for a delicate landing on the edge of the love-nest.
The female birds, one after the other, alighted on branches to deposit gifts. Worms and bugs and bits of fruit formed a pile in a fork in the tree.
“What in the sky is all of this?” the Mrs. chirped as she ran one plush wing across her eyes to ensure she wasn’t dreaming.
“What in the sky is all of this?” a mockingbird inquired.
The goose honked loudly, “This is our thanks to you for allowing the Mr. to help us through the rough times.”
The mockingbird chimed in, honking loudly, “This is our thanks to you for allowing the Mr. to help us through the rough times!”
“Yes. The Mr. and his friends helped us, the abandoned mothers,” a sparrow tweeted.
"The abandoned mothers," echoed the mockingbird.
“They brought us food so we could stay on our nests. The male Robins volunteered to guard our hatchlings while we pay tribute to you and the other mothers for your sacrifices,” a chorus of tweets, chirps and the one honk replied.
The Mrs. looked at the Mr. in a new light. Where she once saw recklessness, she now saw kindness. She would reconsider the moving on she had so been craving. Where was it written that Robins couldn’t mate for life? By Lisa H. Owens Day-Two [Kindness], Inspired by a Five-Day March, 2021 Shut Up & Write Five-Day Fable Writing Challenge See: Love-Nest part-one See: Never A Swan part-three
Never a Swan [Part-Three of The Robins' Series]
Day-Three of a Shut Up & Write Fable Writing Challenge [Theme - Dare to Dream] *** Baby Robin’s eyelids fluttered and his feet twitched as he dozed. He was having a glorious dream. He lazily floated on a tepid pond surrounded by bulrushes and cat-tails, glancing down to find an unrecognizable graceful reflection staring back at him. A seemingly endless curved neck disappearing into a lithe body coated with sleek white feathers gazed—unblinking—into his black eyes. He was startled by his own beauty, as he lazily paddled webbed feet to explore the flora and fauna edging the water. A more elegant and feminine version of himself kept pace, as together they dipped beaks into placid water, causing a light swell of ripples and dimples. Minnows and sunfish scattered in their wake. He felt powerful with a lovely mate by his side and the fish fleeing as they spotted two pairs of webbed feet stroking, keeping time as if dancing, overhead.
With hooded eyes, he stretched out his neck to wrap and pull his mate in close for a little peck…then jerked back as a shadow-form swept down, jostling him. He was surrounded by ear-piercing chirps, perhaps the sound of crickets—very close—and bolted upright, now fully awake. Three hatchlings knocked and jolted baby Robin as they tussled and chirped in his ears, vying to get Mama’s attention. She was delicately perched on the rim of the love-nest with a fat squirmy worm dangling from her beak.
Baby Robin stretched his neck forward—not long and elegant, as in his dream—instead short and stout. A solid blue-collar-bird’s neck. He joined his siblings (the four of them still pink, wrinkled and bald), as they tweeted with beaks open wide, ready to accept a meal from Mama. He may never become a swan (elegant, aloof and often alone) but he would always be happy with his band of Robin brothers by his side. Sometimes a dream was best left at that. Just a dream. By Lisa H. Owens Inspired by a 5-Day Shut Up & Write Fable Writing Challenge March, 2021 Day-Three [Dare to Dream] See: Love-Nest part-one See: The Bird's Life part-two