Leafsong knelt in the long grasses outside the cottage; her face suffused with concentration. Before her, carefully half-buried in an earthen pit, lay one of her mate’s metallic chestplates, gleaming blue-silver in the low afternoon sunlight. Ashaid, lying in the shade of the cottage wall, stared at her with a look of barely concealed hatred, whilst simultaneously keeping one golden eye on the fattest of his master’s young, who had just begun to crawl.

As Flora trundled off to explore a particularly interesting rock; her easygoing brother, who had not yet achieved mobilisation, sat up against his mother’s thigh and waved a handful of grasses, while Mirae sprinkled water from Ashaid’s drinking vial over his leg.

“Fowas” intoned Mirae, her delicate features solemn. Leafsong snorted, reaching out with a finger to touch the surface of the chestplate. After two hours in the unseasonably warm winter sun, it was hot to the touch.

“Flowers?” she replied to the little girl, wiping sweat from her forehead. “You won’t get no lick growing flowers off your brother. He is a BOY not a seed.”

Mirae looked confused for a moment. “See?”

Leafsong nodded, then yelped as her two and a half year old son ambushed her from behind with a twig.

“Ouch!! Analiff, you little beast!”

Analith let out a cackle, then spotted the objects in Leafsong’s basket. He looked perplexed.


“Yes, Ani.”

“Eggs….. Eat eggs?” he replied, hopefully, then looked crestfallen as she shook her head.

“No, not yet, anyway.”

Nudging Loredar out of the way, she reached for an egg, and broke it over her husband’s chestplate. It was quickly followed by the second one. She tossed the shells over her shoulder and they hit Ashaid in the muzzle. He imagined savaging her viciously.

After a few moments, the egg yolks began to sizzle dutifully, yellow liquid seeping into the ornate etched design. Leafsong crowed in triumph; Analith looked disapproving.

“Bad min’da,” he said eventually, giving her another reproachful smack with the twig. Flora, who had been exploring the property boundary, smelt food and shot back over as fast as her chubby hands and feet could carry her. Leafsong kept her grasping hands away from the hot metal.

“No, it ain’t cooked yet, and besides, you only eat mashed up veggies.”

Flora looked devastated. Mirae, peering around Leafsong’s crouched form, let out a happy cry.


As Ashamal came around the side of the cottage, she toddled over to meet him. He strode over to Leafsong and, bending down to kiss her, noticed the cooking eggs. His jaw dropped.

“Is that the ceremonial armour I was awarded in Silithus?”

Leafsong looked shifty.

“I, um. Made dinner. Poached or scrambled?”


1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Aphel said,

    Poor Aphel’s armour. The babies are little demanding bastards.

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