The Birds

Hi all, this is for Master Class, and it is an interesting tale.

The prompt was: Never name the well from which you will not drink.

I hope you like this.

Before all… were the birds. The birds all lived in a small congregation in a small world. Nothing was relatively vast or gigantic, and all was plain yet all was beautiful. There was almost no diversity, every bird was created flawless, as a cream colored, gorgeous prodigy in a body of elegantly-shaped feathers and light bone. There was just one rule for these gentle creatures.

NEVER NAME THE WELL FROM WHICH YOU WILL NOT DRINK.

Besides being forbidden from speaking the well’s name, they were forbidden to go anywhere among the well’s 1 mile radius. If they ever did these things, they would go to jail. Birds gossiped that if you drank from the well, your feathers would be plucked off. One by one, from the kings beak.

The Birds worshiped the king as their god, and he enforced his rules with an iron fist.

None of the birds knew how exactly they were created, furthermore, how they all were pain-stakingly beautiful, and all identical.

No one was particularly curious, they were satisfied, yet a wee bit confused.

During winter, the birds, instead of migrating, took a different aproach. They all became black, vicious, and ominous Ravens. The birds underwent a sort of religious vigil and prayed to The Dark One, whom no one has ever seen. Usually all birds, all birds but one underwent this ceremony. During this time, the king; the first cardinal, stayed beautiful.

During the next vigil time, two birds did not undergo the vigil. One being the king… and the other being… Talon. When Talon was born, he was the first bird in existence with his namesake.

From birth, Talon disagreed with everything, and was shunned upon. He had often thought of leaving the city, but never laid his plan into action. This time, however, was different. Talon stayed isolated high up in The Black Mountains, well the rest of The Birds went to The Plains for the vigil.

Talon broke the rules that day. He broke all of them. Talon had wandered aimlessly out of the main part of the city, into uncharted and illegal territory. He had been hoping to find another bird city, but instead he found himself on the path to The Well. Talon wandered to the edge of the cliff and gazed astonished at what lay before him. An entire empire of fuming, dank smog lay before him. It was spewing out of a gigantic factory chimney. Nothing was gigantic and nothing was vast. Nothing but this… wasteland.

Talon had been looking for something different, but not something as evil and terrible as this.

Talon soared down on his magnificent wings and decided to explore it, and find the culprit of this monstrous deed. Talon went to the center of the factory city and found himself in awe. A small, luscious jungle lay before him, and inside it lay the captivating… well.

The jungle was untouched by the smog, as if a magical place, one hinting of forbidden wizardry and dark yet beautiful sin.

Pretty isn’t it?”

Talon whirled around to confront a tall and elderly gray bird, with a monocle and a top hat perching atop his head.

The view, I mean,” the elder said.

Ye.. yes.” Talon stammered.

Go on… DO IT!!! Accomplish what no one else has dared to do! Drink from the well, DO IT! I’m right here, backing you up on this!” The elder’s voice hissed into his ears, and Talon as if possessed, found himself obeying. The elder accompanied him, and Talon bent down to drink.

Suddenly an aura of dark, powerful magic burst from within the elder. “YOU FOOL!!!!!” He screamed. Talon found that this once sneaky elder was now The King, his god. “HOW DAREEE YOU DEFY ME?” The King spat, each syllable oozing with cruelty and power.

Talon fled into a nearby alleyway and ran for his life. Overhead, the sky darkened with the seven forms of sin, and this is what became night. Talon

screamed, horrified at where he had wound up.

Before him, lay all the pieces used to make Birds.

White curved feathers and several glossy blue empty eyes were scattered before him.

Talon shuttered and continued running. He passed dark artifacts, hissing chimneys, and insane Birds clawing at cages. “Ha Ha Ha HA ha ha, master’s gonna get you, out come the old, IN come the new!!!!”

Talon slammed into the iron side of something cold and hard. The well.

YOU CANNOT ESCAPE MY PRESENCE!!!!!” The king’s voice boomed.

Where are you? Show yourself!” Talon responded, screaming in defiance.

BUT I AM EVERYTHING AND I AM EVERYWHERE! LOOK ABOVE YOU, SCUM!!!!”

Talon gazed overhead and gasped. The king’s wings had enveloped the entire world, and his color had become not just red, but red with streaks of crackling, dark energy.

I am DARKNESS, I AM NIGHT! I CREATED YOU, YOU should be GRATEFUL!!!! THIS IS HOW YOU REPAY ME?”

Talon knew what he must do, even if it meant death. Talon jumped into action, chirping a war call of duty. He spread his shimmering wings, and dived into the well.

For a moment, Talon was amazed at the calming and glistening water, that surrounded him.

Talon involuntarily floated to the surface.

NO! Noooooooooooo!!!” Yet already Talon’s actions were taking effect. The kings voice was fading, and the dark aura around him was depleting. In a final effort, the King hurled himself at Talon, and his dark beak pierced Talon’s heart.

Talon’s vision was fading, the world was almost completely black. Yet he breathed a sigh of relief, The king’s power was gone, and he was dead from lack of energy. Talon closed his eyes, and the blood from his heart trickled down his pale flesh and skin, until it was streaked on his hand, his fingers covered by it.

In honor of him, now all birds have talons, and they now migrate to escape the cold instead of undergoing a vigil.

Talon died that day, his limp body lying against the metallic well. Across from his naked leg, words were carved into the well, as if the full prophecy just being laid eyes upon for the first time.

IF YOU NEVER NAME THE WELL FROM WHICH YOU WILL DRINK,

DESPERITY, CRUELTY, EVIL, AND UNIFORMITY WILL OVERTAKE THE WORLD.

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7 thoughts on “The Birds

  1. What wonderful creativity. I’m very pleased you joined the Master Class. I hope to inspire you many times over. I love the direction you went with this and it reads like a myth, and I’m a huge mythology fan. Welcome!

  2. I love the direction you took with this prompt, and I agree with Sam, it feels very much like mythology. Your descriptions were wonderful creating a very surreal world out of ordinary things. It was well paced, telling a story in completion yet leaving room for so much more!

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