Drabble: The Blackbird King – by Wendy Nikel

by specklit

Only a mad king would demand a pie of blackbirds. He ordered twenty-four birds be slaughtered, diced, and cooked for the crime of robbing the royal fruit trees. Yet when the baker presented the fragrant dish, the crust held only six. Six whirring, clanking clockwork crows with wispy feathers of gold, secretly constructed by the kingdom’s finest tinkerers deep in the rebels’ quarters.

His knife sliced the pie, meeting metal rather than meat.

The crows burst forth, brandishing their needle-sharp claws as weapons, their tiny beaks as spears.

The king fell, clutching his heart, in a heap of bloodstained feathers.

Author’s Note: This story is (obviously) based on the nursery rhyme “Sing a Song of Sixpence,” with a steampunk twist.


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