THE FLABBERGAST FARM FIGHTS BACK - MG, Magical Realism Feb 18, 2020 17:15:27 GMT -5
Post by Emma D. on Feb 18, 2020 17:15:27 GMT -5
The half-crazed chicken zoomed between Molly’s legs, with a great cackling and squawking and flailing of wings. Molly looked up and watched her wobbly path between four horse hooves, over a back of a pig and across a puddle. Mud flew and feathers ruffled as she flapped her way through the farmyard to safety, straight up the rickety ladder into the chicken house.
“Bella,” called Molly, “Are you alright?”
Bella was clearly upset about something, but it was hard to tell what it was this time. From the state of the weather to the colour of her eggs, she was always worried about something, but she normally flapped her wings and squawked a lot about it. Perhaps this was a little more serious than usual.
“Can I help?” she shouted. With her hands resting on her hips, Molly stood firmly planted on the muddy path trying to figure out what this fuss was about. She was small for her age, but strong and sturdy from all her work around the farm. “Bella! What’s wrong?”
Brown Leghorn chickens are bound to be a little more anxious and skittish than other chickens. Molly had read that in her chicken breed book when they had agreed to let Bella come and live at the Flabbergast Farm. Skittish. She had had to look that one up in the giant dictionary she kept under her bed. It was too big to go on her crowded, sagging bookcase. It meant jumpy, and that was spot on for Bella.
Anxious and skittish, but a good layer, producing about three hundred eggs a year. Grandma had been quite excited about that, and Molly couldn’t blame her. Of course, the animals weren’t at the Farm because of what they could produce. They were there because they all had something special in common.
All the animals living at the Flabbergast Farm were performing animals. Instead of producing eggs and milk for sale, they sang for their supper. Or danced. Sometimes it required barking at people about children who had fallen down a well. One memorable television advert had involved three chickens, a singing pig and a donkey doing a tap dance. The Flabbergast Farm was known in television and film circles as having the best trained animals in the business. Even if some of them were a little anxious, or skittish sometimes.
Molly counted off the possibilities on her fingers. “Okay, Bella. You had -one - a perfect white egg this morning. Two - no fallen feathers. Three - you’ve got plenty of feed in the bowl. I know the weather is miserable, but that’s not going to set you racing round the yard like that. Unless it’s to keep warm.”
It was puzzling, to say the least. She sighed, and resigned herself to crawling into the chicken coop to comfort an upset Bella.
Suddenly, an enthusiastic bark crashed past her knees, knocking them out from under her.