Great Cowbird
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What is a bird?

They can exist without flight, feathers, beaks or claws. Many in the Animal Kingdoms decry the delineation of their Dodobus or Rathin kin. They demand to know why these lines must be drawn. Without their input, no less! Truly a great behemoth of badness bowling and rolling throughout the mind of every denizen of this world, penetrating their thoughts as they skip through field to knoll and back again. How can life be truly enjoyed when one knows that elsewhere, cataloging and ranking of their very being may determine their future, or redefine their past?

Confoundment became the order of the day. The greatest scientists of all animal-kind bound themselves together in singular purpose. Tirelessly they strode through ten times the terrible technical specifications needed by the scientists of mankind. For all beakers break when colliding with hooves, and the smells which may be bottled by corking will still permeate the sensitive secondary smellers of a hound. But their dedication saw them through to the end. For their work was successful and just. A new breed of creatures which would truly straddle the lines and confound the damned who dared to direct their lives.

First was the grand Cowbird. Standing at three kicked elves tall, it had wispy hairs atop is head and two twitching ears tightly fastened on either side. A swishing tail pushed through the cloaca, swatting stinging insects and gawking starers alike. Between its claws was a set of udders, which took the insect and other cretinous proteins ingested by the mother and produced a puree not unlike milk. Rearing its young with great care, it taught them the meaning of their lives and how they were destined to liberate all of animal-kind from arbitrary classification.

Trumped up next was the Flutebird, for it was easy to make weird birds. Cawing and gacking fled its mouth. Instead the cries came in the form of a yodeling note set, chords and melody mixed with angry broken sound permeating even inanimate objects. When cheered by its fellows, the most melodious sounds imaginable come pouring from its rounded psuedo-beak. But when distressed, the agony it beseeches upon all around it is unbearable. Luck is on the side of one who has found this bird? Maybe. But it is equally likely that shrill disharmony may be their lot. It is said that those who are cursed to hear its tune will forever carry a ringing in their ears.

More difficult in genesis was the AntVark. One milometer long, it hardly seemed to construe anything of significance at all. Yet still, like the others, when created by those inhabiting a state of nature, it found its place. Clinging to the larger creatures under creation it could permeate their very being, for good or worse. Tiny but fuzzy made it easy to blend in on a coat or pelt. By hanging on these creatures, they became learned, and the leaders of this new movement. Of course many were smushed when their unseen forms found unfortunate footing in foolish spots, but such is life with the Stegosaurus Union.

Delighted, the animal scientists knew their work had been a grand success. Now it was time to show the supposed smarties how wicked their ways were.

At the annual Elrichian Education Earned-men, the animals made their move. Stealing the spotlight from some old spotted man speaking of cures and ills, none of which mattered to them, they exploded through the walls and floor to great calamity. The ones spoken of and others who didn't get top billing clawed, bit and scratched their message clearly. It was utter pandemonium when the great charging Rhinocerfish burst out of the piping, flopping their way to the ruination of the entire hall. These learned scholars were agonized by their mistake. Mother nature had found their hypothesis' lacking, and sent her children as rebuttal. AntVarks crawled deep upside their ears and whispered messages of the error in their ways. The point was loud, and would have been clear had there not been so many Flutebirds.

Thus, a grand bargain was struck. For the price of never again stepping foot inside their academic institutions, the great men of Elrich would refrain from concord of taxonomy. Both sides have kept their ends of the bargain, and to this day, the Elrichian encyclopedia of animals is quite thin. As for the creations, their descendants roam the wilderness of Elrich as a testimony to what standing up for your individuality can do.

When you are weird, you win.

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