Surprisingly the road beyond Threetrees was well paved and in good shape which would make the journey easier (or so I thought.)
About two miles down the road we met an orange chicken. With green spots on it's tail feathers.
"How are you doing?" It asked.
"Quite well thank-you," Geoffrey replied politely. "We're heading for the capital." He carefully didn't mention its name since we had no idea if the chicken had escaped what we assumed to be a spell, or if it thought the capital was named Orphouz.
"Wow, you sure you want to go there? I mean gosh, those wizards (another name for magicians) are really whipping up a storm," said the chicken.
"Literally?" I questioned. Both chicken and dragon frowned at me.
"No, where did you get that idea." Geoffrey said with exasperation. "Sometimes I wonder about your intelligence."
My intelligence??? Well!
It soon appeared that the chicken had decided to join us, so both Geoffrey and I were relieved when the chicken said, "By the way, I've noticed an awful lot of travelers coming by here who think that the capital is named something like Orf Howz! ‘Scuse me, maybe I should ask if you think the same first?"
"No, we're just as relieved that you don't. We were just in Threetrees, and everybody thought that it was named Cockle!" Geoffrey assured the chicken.
"By the way, what’s your name? Mine's Geoffrey, this is CD."
"Well now glad to here it. My name's Beeguglybird. Hey kid you laugh and I'll scratch you're eyes out!" The chicken grumped at my grin. "You can, and should, call me Beeg.
"O.K.!" Geoffrey and I said together.
"What exactly did you mean when you said that the wizards were whipping up a storm?" I asked.
"Well now, some says as how they're tryin' to protect the kingdom from some horrible critter that's been ordered to eat it. But others thinks that the wizards 're just lookin' for an excuse to name everything after their greatest and most notable. Me, I'm bettin' on there bein' some sort of horrible critter, because I can't imagine them wizards workin' so hard unless their lives were involved. No offense kid, but the most powerful is usually the most lazy in that bunch."
I really couldn't deny that. I had often noticed the tendency of my teachers to force some innocent student to do all of the physical labor involved in teaching the class. I couldn't recall any of them doing a lot of mental work either.
However it isn't usually good for a students state of mind to point this out to the teacher in question, since there is an appalling tendency of said student to suddenly have a craving for flies.
"I wonder what kind of creature could eat a city, and who would order it to," wondered Geoffrey.
"I couldn't dare say! But I'll bet it’s a big critter!" Exclaimed Beeg. "Any how, lets git our feet a movin' t'wards that capital. I'm sure that the King can answer all our questions."