She was a chick named Little, on account of, she only weighed three pounds when she was soaking wet. Although a friendly bird around people, she was ruthless towards others of her own kind. She could get things that she coveted from people, but as leader of a notorious, albeit ragtag, band of free-range chickens, she and her flock roamed the high desert sage south of Albuquerque. Little was the brains of the gang; she planned all the jobs, she found the food. She was cunning and sly. She was mean; she got that from her dad, a Goliath of a New Hampshire rooster. She was also a good layer; she got that from her mom, a White Rock hen.
The flock was mobile, and when they were on the move, Little typically rode in the bright red sidecar attached to Peck’s bike. Peck was a handsome cockerel. Almost all cream coloured with red-brown feathers on his back and wings. His giant comb was run through with a grey scar that looked a bit like a Harry Potter lightning bolt. He weighed in at just over six pounds. Even with his fierce looks, he was a bit scared of Little. He’d seen her single-handedly rip the head off a red fox when she was little more than a pullet. He loved her with all his heart, and thankfully, she loved him in return.
Little was as beautiful as she was ruthless. Her bright yellow legs were long and shapely; she sported feathers of a coppery red colour. Her beak was yellow-ochre, and it was sharp. She could snatch an eye from a rattlesnake. There were quite a few serpents in Valencia County who wore patches after having had a run-in with Little. What struck an observer most though? Her eyes, yellow with an orange glint, and when she turned her head sideways to study someone, she’d deliver a piercing gaze that could strike fear into the hearts of her enemies.
It was a few winters back; when the flock lost one of their own, a hen named Noodle. She liked to tell fortunes for other chickens and to dance naked around campfires. Noodle never saw it coming when the old man and his enchantress got the better of her. They were camping in the snow near the river, and they fell on her. They came out of the dark and snapped her neck. The predators made grilled chicken sandwiches of Noodle and the flock scattered.
After a brief period of mourning, no more than an hour or so, Little recognized the need to distract the two killers.
She took it on herself to gather a few eggs (donated to the cause by some of the girls). She dipped into her own stash for chorizo, took the tortillas that Noodle wouldn’t need anymore and sent Brewster to the truck stop where he got cheese and salsa.
Little, herself, during the darkest part of the night – just before the dawn, snuck up to the murdering bastard’s campsite and neatly stacked the foodstuffs in front of their tent flaps. When the killers woke, it was first light. They recognized the offering for what it was – a plea for peace. Peck and Little watched from behind the silver leaves of a Havard Agave as the executioners made breakfast burritos, broke camp and drove east.
Peck put a wing around Little when the desert was quiet again when the interlopers had pulled out of sight. They were both surprised when Kellogs sauntered by.
“Your old lady is a chicken,” he said to Peck, “appeasing those assassins instead of attacking them. Shit, I coulda took ‘em by myself.” He spat on the ground in disgust.
In a flash, like a whirlwind, Little pecked his eyes out and tore his comb clean off. As he lay bleeding, blinded, and gasping for air in the desert sand, she leaned over and whispered, “Sometimes, Kellogs, discretion is the better part of valour. You’re going to die of exposure. Blinded, as you are, you won’t be able to find food. If you weren’t such a cock we would have only lost Noodle, but I reckon you got what’s been coming to you.”
I’m a little slow with this one. ¡Lo siento! Written for The Blog Propellant
The Prompt: This is a re-work of a previous prompt. 1) Write of the most beautiful place you have ever seen, then 2) Place one of your favorite characters in this setting. The character can be one of your own, from another author’s story, or maybe someone you know, and then lastly, 3) Surprise the reader with something unexpected.