The Trouble With Wings

It’s not like she didn’t want wings, you see -who hasn’t ever wanted wings in her life; wanted to fly?

The problem was the side effects.

Laura Kate hadn’t anticipated how darn uncomfortable wings would be. She had arms, didn’t she? Legs? Ears -although, come to think of it, ears occasionally keep one up with that annoying trait of either folding on themselves or of amplifying a heartbeat *chuh-chung* *chuh-chung* *CHUH-chung* *CHUH-CHUNG*

But I digress.

LK came to me because she’d heard I’d found a wishing ring. -How she heard, I don’t know. I try to keep those sorts of things private.

Then again, I’d heard about her wings.

And about her troubles with them.

“Whatever you do,” she said, wings lifting and blowing my papers off my counter, “Don’t wish for flight.” She tried to rub at somewhere on her back; boy, did it look impossible. And itchy. She sighed and twitched.

“Why not?” I really was curious. Like I said, who hasn’t wanted to fly?

Her shoulders shifted at the itch she’d never scratch. “I …didn’t think it through. I mean, I hadn’t ever paid attention to the things that could fly: birds… Yeah; birds! Have you ever seen a bird lie down? Have you seen a bird in a blanket? How about a bird doin’ anything ‘cept pooping?”

I thought it over. “Can’t you fly without wings?”

She shrugged and I lost the rest of the counter decorations to the floor. “Like I said. Didn’t think it through. Now, I don’t want anyone else to make the same mistake.”

I nodded, pensive. I offered her some seeds; I’d heard she couldn’t stomach much any more. She pecked happily at the pile and left in a more lifted mood, having delivered her message -and maybe a little unintended keepsake on the front stoop as well.

I reflected on Laura Kate’s advice, good and hard.

That night, after giving things enough time and consideration -I thought- I took out the wishing ring. I held it in my hands and tried to be smart before saying anything. Finally, I was ready. I cleared my throat and spoke up.

“I wish -“

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©2022 Chel Owens

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