Jack Daw and Carrie Crow surveyed the scene. A misty hue hugged the landscape. It all looked so normal. Jack cast a beady eye on his boss and pecked nervously at his claws.
‘Oh stop that. You know what happens when you do that? You’ll get crow’s feet.’
Jack pecked the air, nervously. ‘Do you think they’ll come?’
Carrie squinted into the middle distance. ‘Oh they’ll come. The real question is will they agree.’
‘The raptors will, surely.’ Jack hopped and stopped himself. Unfocused hopping wasn’t approved behaviour for a member of the Avian Council.
‘Hmm, some maybe but they’re scared, too.’
‘Oh they’ve been completely sideswiped. Do you have any idea how humiliating it is being filmed in your bedroom all the time? Sure we all have to put up with the intrusion, especially in Spring but the raptors… blimey it’s never ending . Take those Ospreys. They bought the dream… endless food, a purpose built home, adulation. And then gradually humiliation. Same goes for all the groups. First they get driven to the edge of extinction, next they’re feted and ‘saved’ but at the cost of having to accept some little box to live in, all looking the same. Makes them feel like a bunch of complete tits. They’re not about to vote to help us, even though we’re the only ones who’ve really stood up against this philanthropic hegemony. Still,’ Carrie flapped her wings as a party of nervy warblers made an appearance, ‘we have to try. Have you taken the roll? Who isn’t here?’
Jack looked at his notes. ‘The gulls can’t make it. They say they’re happy scavenging chips. The parakeets demanded a translation of the motion before they condescended to send someone and the owls…’
‘Surely the Owls are coming?’
‘Not sure. They sent a message asking for a note of why you called this council, beyond the simple motion. I gave them a summary of the situation and emphasised the humiliation this careless naming is causing us.’
‘Well, we could do with their input. It’s not often we get singled out for such tarring and feathering.’
Carrie hopped onto the top rock and looked down on the assembled life, all representing the aggregate bird world of Britain. ‘My feathered friends,’ she boomed, ‘we have reached a crisis in our relationship with humanity.. For so long we have managed our relationship with our bipedal neighbours, getting by, giving them those special moments they seem to crave. But then their world is turned upside down, a plague has swept through them and they are in peril. In normal times we’d reach out, give them a tarty show of Spring feathers to cheer them up.’
The finches began to strut and were stilled by a flap of an eagle’s wings.’
‘Not this year we don’t. These humans, these so called fleshy friends have libelled us, be smirked my family’s good name. They…’
Carrie looked up. In its swooping, loping way, Batista Barn Owl made swift stately progress across the landscape and settled next to her perch. He coughed up a small ball of bones as he cleared his throat. ‘I think you’re about to make fool of yourself, Carrie.’
She looked at him through her steady black eyes. ‘It’s not you they’re blaming. If you go around parroting such nonsense to a suggestible bunch like this, all you’ll do is create the most enormous flap for no reason.’
‘I have been mandated by the Council to put the motion…’
‘Ok. It’s your beak that’s on the line here. I’ll just make my point before the vote. Off you go.’
Uncertain now, Carrie turned back to her flock. She wasn’t used to an Owl, normally the most sagacious and sensible of birds ruffling her feathers. She coughed, grateful at least that her diet didn’t having her gobbing up some misbegotten rodent. ‘I’d like us to vote on the motion. To remind you all, this is what we intended delivering to the Prime Minister via the usual faecal shoulder drop: We the Birds of Britain abhor the egregious use of our family name in labelling this new virus. Please stop immediately or there will be consequences..’
Carrie stood back. Yes, she thought, that had them stirred up. If she knew her people they’d support her. She became aware of Batista shuffling forward.
‘Before we vote, could I just make one point? I know we all respect Carrie and how clever she is but, well spelling isn’t her strong point. This disease has not, for all Carrie’s worries, been named Corvid 19…’
This was written in response to the latest #writephoto prompt