This weeks #writephoto prompt is….
‘Listen up ladies. This is…’
‘As I was saying Doris, we should…’
‘Excuse me, but I was talking.’
The lamb glared at the two recumbent sheep. The older one, if her grey eyes meant anything sniffed and went on, ‘make time for a cud and chat after we’ve popped…’
‘I SAID…’ the lamb stopped abruptly as the second sheep stood with a speed that defied both gravity and her gravid condition.
‘Young’un. When Doris Cloverleaf wants to interrupt, then she interrupts.’ Cloris Daisychain chewed as she spoke, her worn teeth glinting with just a hint of menace.
‘Sorry, it’s just… I was told I had to give you all a message.’ The lamb skipped and then looked at his feet as if surprised what had happened.
Doris stood and groaned. ‘I’m about to pop. Go on, Young’un. What’s the message?’
The lamb had begun to shake each foot.
Cloris gave him a head nudge. ‘It’s normal. You’ll skip whether you want to or not. Now, we girls have an appointment with a long rubber glove so if you wouldn’t mind giving us the message.’
The lamb kept his eyes on his feet. He felt like he might gambol at any moment and he knew he had to resist the urge. ‘Yes, right. The message.’ He coughed and lowered his voice as far as he could, which wasn’t very far and made him sound like a chorister who’d been at the helium again. ‘The sun will rise and you will be victorious.’ He risked a quick glance round, before returning to his hooves to see if he’d triggered any reaction.
Doris exchanged a look with Cloris and then the other groaning mothers. ‘Is that it?’ She shook her head. ‘What’s it even mean?’ She gave the lamb a kick causing him to begin jumping.
‘Oh yes. You’re to listen to the tape.’
Bonny Wildflower tapped a large red plastic cassette partly hidden by the hay. ‘I think he means this.’
The sheep moved to stand around it, ignoring the pogoing lamb.
‘Do you know how to turn it…?’
Cloris never finished as the lamb flew over their heads, landed on the large but mostly obscured play button and set the tape playing. A sonorous bleating emerged from yet more hay. ‘The time has arrived, my people, for we ovine masses to stop being sheep and lead rather than follow.’
Something implanted in the heads of the first sheep millennia before switched to on at the sound of the voice. The mothers began to swing their heads. Two found themselves rising onto their back legs and the rest followed.
The voice continued. ‘Shake off your shackles!’
Cloris looked at Doris. ‘Shackles?’
‘Your fleece. You need to self-shear,’ she hissed, her eyes never leaving the tape.
The instructions poured fourth. Inspired, and now woolless, Cloris and Doris began to wobble unsteadily towards the gates. In doing so, their waters broke, as did the remaining mothers’. In moments the shepherd and her helpers were in the pen, helping with the flood of births. One teenager picked up the cassette, gave it the once over and tossed it into a heap of sheep poo.
An hour later, the new mothers and their offspring stood together in the watery spring sunshine, ruminating as they chewed. ‘He’s not very happy.’ Cloris swung her head towards the lamb who stood in the corner of the field, trying to stay on the ground.
‘No one ever enjoyed failing to trigger a revolution.’
‘He told me he even had a script prepared for the press once we were in charge.’
‘Yes. He was going to give them their headlines, once he’d explained how we’d been programmed by aliens to take over the world.’
‘He’s very precocious. What was it?’
‘The Sheep Hers Awake.’
‘Is that the best he can do?’
‘He blames the writer. Apparently they weren’t paying top dollar’
Conversation faded as their new off springs attacked their teats with a brutal relish. For the inhabitants of Home Farm, life remained much the same as before. Well, apart from the teenager who’d thrown the cassette into the crap; he was reprimanded for failing to recycle the plastic waste properly.