Birds of Prey
Two beings inhabit The Dome.
They are Barciro and The Wikler.
If the channel was not open, Lysander would have torn it open by talon and beak.
‘You’ve gone mad, Sea Hawk, and you’ll not drag us down with you!’
The osprey perches alone on a skinny tree branch. Below him, perched on a branch of a different tree, stands the pair eagles. The vulture flock and the dayguard have both returned to the keep. The many batboxes stir as the nightguard begins to wake.
The osprey flaps his wings once, and swiftly at that, as if to wave the bald eagle off. Lysandra shoots Hilaetos a sour look for this, but sends nothing.
‘You call me mad, Lysander, but I am the only sane one left. The hawks are Birds of Prey just like yourself, just like the gulls, just like the vultures.’
‘The damn gulls aren’t Birds of Prey!’ sends Lysandra, entering into the fray. ‘They’re Birds of Lake dorming here under conscription and nothing else, and you know it to be true! They are servants to The Sticks, same as the bats and buzzards and us, same as you… or have you forgotten you are not the biggest wingflapper on Monksville?’
‘If you have,’ Lysander continues, ‘we would be happy, no, we would be honored to remind you of your true size.’
The osprey makes to take a step backwards, then he remembers he’s on a skinny branch. ‘Even so, you’re only proving my point. You reserve a hospitality for a sect of Birds of Lake while at the same time turning your tail-feathers on a flock of fellow Birds of Prey. It’s shameful, pair eagles, and I am guilty of it too; we disgracefully turn our backs on our own kind and give support to those who we once considered our enemy.’
The eagles stare solemnly at the osprey. Then, ‘Once an enemy is now a friend. The hawks have never been a friend to Monksville, Hi–’
‘Nor were you two upon arrival. Then I flapped in and convinced The Vultress otherwise, and in return I’ve asked nothing. Perhaps we bicker over the wrong matter, perhaps it is the vulture flock that should be evicted. They’re neither Birds of Prey nor Lake, they merely clean up the scraps left behind by their neighbors.’
‘The vulture flock has been here the longest of all of you,’ sends the mind of the old witch doctor, its presence ghastly and foreign in the heads of the other flappers of wing, ‘and they shall not be removed from their rightful homeland, Hilaetos. Rest well now, high pair eagles; your Sea Hawk and I have much to discuss.’
With that the channel closes, as if by command, and the pair eagles look smugly into the osprey’s eyes. They then take for the trees where a small nest awaits them. They’ve been planning for a family for a few cycles now, but they cannot rear eaglets in The Sticks, the petrified jungle is too crowded. They know better than to assume none will come flapping in search of an easy meal – Eggs of Lake are known to fill a hungry belly during the annual hatching come springtime; if anything, a hearty Egg of Prey is more desirable, as it offers sustenance along with bragging rights.
The osprey takes flight into the fleeting light of the shineset, making for North Cove.
This has been the twelfth subchapter of the second chapter of The Monksville Chronicles. Here is everything you need to know about it:
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