Monday 19 February 2024

The Black Knight by Fleur Lind, strawberry daiquiri


It was the most unlikely relationship, ever.

Ruby’s mother Rona said it would never work. She had heard and knew the age-old saying ‘‘opposites attract’ but this was pushing it a bit far.  All Rona wanted was for their beautiful daughter Ruby, to be happy, healthy, and content like any parent, but Rona could not, regardless of how hard she tried to remain positive, see how this courtship could play out to become a blossomingly beautiful union.

How could it work when Ruby was flamboyant, noisy and lively and Bronson was the quiet suave type?

Bronson didn’t have to say much for Ruby to hang on to his every word. He was absurdly good-looking and his demeanour said it all. Ruby was smitten, so any kind, or for that matter, firm words of advice or caution, wisdom from her parents would not have been received well.


Ruby’s father Rex was as sceptical as his wife, regarding their daughter’s new beau, but one look at the size of Bronson’s father caused him to feel extremely reluctant to interfere. To calm the maternal waters, Rex did his utmost to reassure Rona that Ruby was a sensible girl, albeit lovestruck, but she wasn’t the type to make bad decisions.  Rona expressed her concern when matters of the heart are all consuming and overwhelm all logical thought. Ruby’s older sister Rhana had been down that road. Rex sighed and agreed, and had told her not to worry; it was best they left the young ones to sort it out.


Time ticked on, and the gossipy chatter in the neighbourhood had settled down, as it was obvious to them all that Ruby and Bronson were blissfully happy together, thus making the gossip group industrious in listening out for a new story or starting one themselves. 


Ruby and Bronson were approaching their first year together, which filled Ruby and her parents, and Bronson, with joy to see things going so smoothly.

Ruby had a small gift for Bronson, wrapped in a black ribbon. Bronson also had the perfect gift for Ruby. In his typically suave style, he had given his gift a great deal of thought as he wanted it to be remembered and treasured long after being received.  His gift wouldn't need ribbons and bows; it would be complete in its natural form, without the sparkly paper. This worked nicely for Bronson as he didn't ‘do’ sparkly at all.


As their anniversary loomed closer, Ruby’s anticipation was palpable. She marked the days off her calendar, with the date highlighted with a bright pink heart. Ruby loved hues of every colour, but having Bronson in her life had added a subtle tone of charm, passion and mystique to her otherwise colourful life.


On the big night when the moon was full and bright against the smudges of cloud, with a gentle warm puff of breeze, he gave Ruby her present.

He told her she would not know any sensation quite like it. He backed this bold statement with how she would feel as free as a bird. This was quite profound considering she was well-tuned to that feeling. Being a Rainbow Lorikeet offered flight and the freedom of the skies. The world was her oyster, or nectar, as it were.


Ruby climbed on Bronson’s strong muscly black back and hung on tight with her nails. Bracing herself and feeling fit to burst with excitement, he stretched his wide black strong wings. Quietly and effortlessly they lifted into the air.

With her nails securely holding onto Bronson’s wings, Ruby bravely opened her wings, stretching them out freely to the moon. They flew straight across the luminous celestial ball, and the stars seemed to dance around them.  With the slightest flick of his wings, they soared in the expansive darkness, the Moon as bright as a beacon. Then joining his clan as the black cloud of bats silently graced the night sky.


The night air was deliciously fresh on Ruby’s face, and although warm, her senses were exhilarated, giving her a shudder of pure delight. Her eyes opened so as not to miss the beauty of her beau beneath her, and her beak opened slightly as she gave a sigh filled with pleasure.


Bronson was right. Although they shared many pleasures, including feasting on fruit-filled platters, and quiet nights in the family tree, snuggled with his strong but gentle warmth. But there was no feeling quite like a bat flight at night.

Her ‘night rider’ had delivered the perfect gift and the ride of her life.

About the author

Fleur is a Kiwi, living in SE Queensland. She enjoys the fun, challenge, and possibilities of short stories. She is a member of the local writer's group - Rose City Writers in Warwick. For more of Fleur's work: 

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