This is a story about stickers.
His cherubic cheeks glowed warm and pink. A single lock of golden hair escaped from a bulging blue hat that matched a smart blue uniform. A secret smile twinkled in his eyes, as he rode an oversized Turkey.
Turkey stood his ground, staring stoically into the distance. The small passenger on Turkey’s back dug his heels into the soft plumage of useless wings, urging Turkey forward.
“Giddiup Turkey! I don’t want to be late to meet with Pirate.”
Turkey lurched forward, gobbling and trotting along at a lumbering pace. Boy giggled with joy, swinging his legs and clinging to Turkey’s neck. Together they rode through a warren of trees with thick trunks and curling mist that tickled the back of Boy’s neck.
Boy’s small cheeks flushed an even brighter pink. “Hurry Turkey, hurry! The mist is rising!”
Turkey squawked and pitched forward into a jerky run that soon brought them out of the forest and onto a golden beach. The sun shone brightly from above, causing Boy to cover his eyes as they adjusted from the darkness of the forest. In the glare he picked out the fuzzy outline of a palm tree. He pointed out the green palm fronds to Turkey.
“There Turkey! We’re supposed to meet Pirate there!”
Turkey squawked again, sides heaving and giblet shaking. The Boy kicked him in the side.
“There Turkey! There!”
Turkey plopped down onto the hot sand, refusing to move. He flapped his wings frantically, causing Boy to shield his face from the onslaught. Boy cried out, confused.
Turkey, craned his neck around and addressed Boy.
“If you want to go over there, you can ask nicely or you can walk over there your damn self. I’m tired, hot and just ran through a damn forest for you, you little weasel. The least you can do is give me a moment, will ya?”
A small squeak escaped from Boy’s cherry red lips. “Turkey talks?”
“Of course Turkey damn well talks! You don’t have to kick me to get my attention thank you very much. Now you want to go and talk to Pirate- what’s the magic word?”
“Please?” whispered the boy, his small blue eyes wide with fright.
“Damn straight.” Turkey waddled forward towards the palm tree ahead. As the pair crossed over a small sand dune, a man in a red jacket and a swashbuckling cape appeared out of the haze. He wore a rusty sword strapped to his bulging waist and a large floppy brown hat. An animal of a mustache twitched on his upper lip.
As Boy and Turkey approached, the man waved at them. He remained seated on a wooden chest under the palm tree. A red parrot watched from a nearby branch, his suspicious eyes on the three of them.
“Strangers be approachin! Strangers be approachin!” coughed the Macaw. The pirate waved at him angrily.
“Shut it ye damn animal! Shut it!”
Boy pointed at the man in the red coat. “Pirate!”
“No shit Sherlock,” Turkey muttered under his breath.
Pirate, Boy and Turkey turned and walked together towards the shoreline, disappearing into the haze of the mid-afternoon sun.
And so it goes, in Stickerland. As inspired by a wall of stickers this writer encountered at 1:00AM on a Friday. Because the truth is, stories are everywhere. And if this isn’t proof of that, then you’re crazy.