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Never Wish Upon a Star
By Matthew Garcia-Dunn
A Human told Roostandor! that, where she was from, people wished upon stars.
“This is not the way of the universe at all,” he crowed. “The stars don’t make wishes come true! How absurd!”
But back in his roost, surrounded by eggs that never hatched into spells, the master Ovomancer wondered if he was wrong. He’d been known to run his beak before taking a thoughtful beat.
With all his focus, and all his nerve, Roostandor! conjured an egg with a shell so dark that it devoured all the light in the room.
If the mighty Fabled Ovomancer had doubt or fright, his gaze did not betray it. His feathers turned blue, then gold, then kingly purple. He crossed his fingers and toes in cantrip poses.
Cracks zig-zagged across the nightly shell. Torrents of fiery light blasted out from the fissures.
The shell burst apart, and the room was filled with a brilliant light, and an intense heat.
A star was born.
“Star! Tell me your name!” Roostandor! Clucked. “Olive,” replied the tiniest star, her voice flat and droll. “Olive, though you are diminutive and dim in comparison to your ilk, you are still a star at heart. I beseech you: put my curiosity to rest. Can stars indeed grant wishes?” “You wish me, Olive Tinystar, to confirm or deny if stars can truly grant wishes?” “Hang on, now, don’t go putting words in my beak...” “Say, ‘Radiant Olive Tinystar, I, Roostandor! wish to know if stars can in fact grant wishes.’ And don’t forget to add a ‘pretty please with a supernova on top!’”
“I do not wish to wish upon a star.” “But you do.” “Says who? I’ll have words with anyone who tells Roostandor! what he wishes or doesn’t wish!” This went on for some time, much longer than one would hope. And, like all great debates between stars and roosters, it ended with a squabble just before dawn.
Even the tiniest supernova casts a light so bright that it can be seen everywhere on Avonova. The brilliant solar flash ignited waves of gossip from Sparkadia to the Glens of Lost Memory, even reaching the Underside and the Tombs of Perpetua. Nobody knew what had occurred, but the Avos did not seem worried, so everyone continued along with their business.
Roostandor!, his feathers sooty and singed, found the Human who believed stars granted wishes.
The Human gasped, for the Ovomancer supreme no longer had feathers on his face. His beak was blackened. His hat was half burnt away. He smelled delicious, like fried chicken, though no one dared say that aloud.
“Oh, foolish Human!” Roostandor! trilled. “I further investigated the matter of stars and wishes and can conclusively state that stars cannot grant wishes. However, they most certainly are indignant and prone to flaring tempers. Wish upon a star at your own peril... and at the risk of your own emotional stability.”
With that, the mightiest Ovomancer turned on his burnt feet and strutted away with a little limp, leaving a trail of scorched feathers.