The story here involves chickens and Indian camps. Yannic, the 15 year-old son on the farm, recently went to an Indian camp for about two weeks where he had to learn all sorts of different survival techniques, one of which involved making what he reported to me to be the most archaic hunting tool ever developed by man (picture included). He brought the thing back home with him and showed it to me: a flat stick about two feet long and two inches wide, with both ends in something resembling a spearhead (not sharp, though). When I picked it up and hefted it, it was well balanced and felt deadly. Yannic told me that for big animals, the idea was to throw it horizontally to break the animal's legs. For small animals (rabbits, birds, etc.) the idea was the throw it vertically to kill it in one shot. It was a nifty little thing, but at the time it seemed no more than a novelty to put in a young man's room. Yea, doth the reader seeth the path ahead?
Fast forward across the yard to the chicken area. Well, the whole farm is practically the chicken area, but specifically outside their coop is where they are fed and often like to hang out. Over the months here I have found myself becoming chickenman--tending to all the chickens in the morning and the night, keeping track of the all the babies chicks and making sure they're safely locked away with their mothers at night, and even raising a chick myself and having it ride around on my shoulder for two months.
I had been noticing for a few weeks now that there was a specific rooster that couldn't seem to get along with any of the other chickens. The other roosters kept him away from their hens and generally hazed him. He would go out of his way to peck on the chicks while they were eating, and spent the whole day walking around looking persecuted. I felt a little bad for him regarding the first thing, but as for the second I had no pity. Those were my chicks I had been spending so much effort and time raising and taking care of, and they weren't even in his way. He would walk over to them where they were eating and peck at them, probably to take out his frustration of the others picking on him and giving me an etymological lesson to the idiom "pecking order". The first time I caught him doing this I nonchalantly walked through the chickens eating their breakfasts and delivered unto him the swiftest of kicks to the ass. The second time I caught him doing this I once again delivered unto him the swiftest of kicks into the ass. The progressive number of times I caught him doing this, he would see me coming and with the swiftest of movements remove his ass from the incoming kick. I reported the situation to the family and we all agreed that he was to be chosen for the next sacrifice (meaning: I was to prepare him for dinner whenever I felt I had the energy).
I let him go for awhile and dreamed of sending him to the oven until one morning I opened the chicken coop as per normal and began to throw oats on the ground for the chickens' breakfast. Lo and behold, not only did our rooster in question once again go out of his way to peck a chick, he went out of his way to peck the very chick I had spent two months carrying around on my shoulder. He had attacked my Speedy! Things were now personal. I chased him after he deftly avoided his swift kick to the ass and threw a few rocks in his general direction. My aim is pretty horrible, so he was safer than he thought he was. However, now I was ticked and I suddenly had the idea of using Yannic's new instrument. Unfortunately, it wasn't at my immediate disposal and I had more work to do, so by the time I was finished I had forgotten about it (plus I didn't really want to immerse myself in chicken gore that day).
However! The next morning arrived and once again on the breakfast floor he went for a chick minding her own damn business. I had had enough. He managed to avoid his swift ass-kicking and my hurled rocks once again (narrowly with a rock this time, though). I then dropped what I was doing, went in the house and retrieved the Instrument. I found him outside in the yard and gave the Instrument my first throw. Now like I said before, I'm usually a piss-poor aim, but this thing flew unexpectedly straight. I would have hit him, but I was a bit short and the perpetrator ran away squawking. I went to retrieve my weapon and continued with my work. He was hiding now and I knew I was going to have to wait to for another chance at a good throw. It appeared the day was going to be a chicken-hunting day, as well as a chance to get some practice throwing my new toy. I went on to my next task of feeding the pigs to give the persecuted a chance to come back out into the open.
I came back to the yard to find him roughly in the same place. I dropped the buckets I was carrying and readied the Instrument, trying to get myself in the best position before he could freak out and bolt. About three yards away, I made my second throw, but this time my aim was true and result was BULLSEYE! For one moment I was one with my hunting-gathering ancestors. The rooster flapped around on the ground squawking, but was unable to get on his feet to run away. I don't know if I had injured him or just stunned him, but whatever the case he was prone enough for me to walk over and pick him up. Primitive as it was, Yannic's Instrument had certainly stood the test of time. I put the rooster in a cage and went inside to prepare the ritualistic objects* and don my priestly clothing**.
*Boiling pot of water, "beheading axe", and gutting knife.
**Running shorts, old shoes, and a ratty T-shirt, i.e. things I didn't care about getting blood on.
And thus the sacrifice was performed in a professional manner and there was much rejoicing during the evening meal. The dude was freakin' delicious.Back to Vyst's stories.