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A Unicorn's Breakfast (youngsters:fairy tales, 2785 words)
Author: Ian HobsonAdded: Jan 11 2007Views/Reads: 4171/1610Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
Have you ever wondered what unicorns have for breakfast? No? Well, I have to admit that I haven't either, until now...
 



A Unicorn's Breakfast (Another tale from Astrantia) 

© 2006 Ian G. Hobson 

Have you ever wondered what unicorns have for breakfast?  No?  Well, I
have to admit that I haven't either, until now.  Unicorns are mythical 
beasts, rather like horses or ponies to look at, except that they have 
cloven hooves and a spiralling horn in the middle of their foreheads; a 
single, and very sharp, horn that could do you a lot of damage if you 
found yourself on the receiving end of one. 

Now, you might think that if unicorns are mythical, then they don't
really exist; but if you are thinking that, then you are forgetting 
that this is a tale from Astrantia, where mythical beasts, and even 
witches and warlocks, are commonplace. 

*** 

The creature's name was Squill and he was about the size of a family
cat; though he couldn't have looked more different.  He was a biloba, a 
lizard-like creature that walked with a twisting motion, with his snout 
and tail swinging from side to side.  And folded neatly on his back 
were a large pair of wings that, occasionally, he would unfurl, so that 
he could leap into the air and soar high above the ground. 

'Come on, Squill!  You're supposed to be helping me look!' exclaimed
Luzula.  The young witch was Squill's mistress and, followed by her pet 
biloba, she was walking through the woods, near the village where she 
lived.  Not long after her ninth birthday, Luzula had found, and 
nurtured, the tiny biloba naming him Squill, and carrying him around in 
her leather satchel; until he had become too big for it. 

'Squill help, Zoola!'  Squill, having found something to eat along the
path, had fallen behind, but he unfurled his wings and, flapping them 
vigorously, he took a running jump into the air and was soon soaring 
above Luzula's head.  'What we look for, Zoola?' 

'What are we looking for?'  Luzula corrected her pet, like a mother
correcting a small child, but she didn't mind being called Zoola; 
especially as Zoola had been Squill's first word.  She laughed as 
Squill did a somersault in the air before twisting around and gliding 
skilfully down to land at her feet.  He had learned to fly long before 
he had learned to speak. 

'What are we looking for?'  Squill repeated Luzula's words.  He was a
fast learner but would probably need to be corrected again.  With a 
front claw, he picked something from between his teeth and then 
swallowed it. 

Luzula pushed the hood of her cloak back on to her shoulders and tucked
a stray lock of dark hair behind her ear.  'What have you been eating?' 
she asked as she looked down at her pet.  Squill had an insatiable 
appetite and would eat anything from caterpillars to chocolate cake. 

'Found nice juicy slugs,' replied the biloba.  'Squill like slugs.' 

Luzula grimaced.  It was getting harder and harder to find suitable food
for Squill; but at least there were no mice in her mother's pantry 
anymore.  'Come on, Squill.  We're looking for polypody.  It's a bright 
green fern, with long jagged leaves.'  Luzula needed the wild fern for 
a potion she was working on. 

'What jagge-did mean?' Squill asked as he turned and scurried along the
woodland path. 

'Jagged?' replied Luzula. 'It means like this.'  As Squill turned to
look back, Luzula drew a zigzag shape in the air with her forefinger; 
then Squill spread his wings and flew off again, with his keen eyes 
searching the woodland floor. 

'Don't go too far!' cried Luzula anxiously, as she hurried after him. 

*** 

At first the unicorn was frightened, but then he became very angry, and


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