The RIM Confederacy: Prison Break

Prologue ~

Helena sat, thinking it still needs something. Or some things, maybe to make the Aviary a really good place to sit and meditate—at least for me.

She had ordered many items that so far, had worked she thought, as she sat in the corner of a large divan, her feet tucked up and nestled below her. The divan faced the fine fencing of the large avian space and she’d had it placed about in the middle. Some of the plants that had been in a viewers way, she’d had her aides remove them and one could see now from the divan and the whole rest of the seating group, just about all the space inside.

She noted too, that the birds had adapted to the changes within their space by simply ignoring them.

Birds were like that, she’d read. In fact over the past month, she’d been haunting the Galipedia areas that covered aviary ownership and the handling of birds of all types. She did note that the couple of species in her Aviary, that looked so oddly, were not given any kind of a Galipedia entry—that was something she thought that she would do herself but later.

Once the Aviary was finished, she thought would be the right time to do that.

She did wonder though about the species that rolled right past her usually, the ones she’d nick-named the “ball-birds.”

They had the usual feathered body and head and wings even—bright yellow in color but there was a hint or a flavor of green there too. But it was this species feet that was unusual.

Instead of two gripping feet on legs, there was instead a scaled ball that was wider than it was tall. Each of the legs still protruded down from the bird’s body, but at the end of same, they somehow acted like an axle that fit within that ball. As these yellow birds leaned forward, she’d learned from weeks of watching, that changed their center of gravity and that made the ball roll ahead. Or in any direction that the bird leaned. As the center of gravity for the bird changed, the ball rolled ahead or back—she noted that the birds never leaned to one side but always turned in a tight u-turn if they wanted to change their position.

Watching them eat was a real bit of fun, she thought, as they were all constantly jockeying for position to get the feeds from the robot feeders that were over against the far wall.

“Still, that’s one hell of an unusual looking bird,” she said to herself.

She did know that the late Duke’s mother had actually gone into the Aviary, and had sat on a bench within and had hand fed these ‘ball-birds’ and she’d been told that they even allowed her to pet them.

She had not as yet ever seen any of them fly, actually and that was something she did look forward to seeing.

Till then, she said as she sipped her juice, and noted that the one with the big green splotch on it’s back, was still looking at her, she’d just sit and enjoy her new pets…