Xara glared at the tiny white bird in frustration. It just looked up at her with its beady black eyes, moonlight glinting off the silver pendant it held in its beak, seeming to mock her.
"This is foolishness," she muttered and reached out once more to take back what was hers.
As had happened everytime she tried to do so before, the chicken ran away, only to pause a little ways on the edge of the field, taunting her. Grumbling, Xara pulled her hammer from her back. She hadn't wanted to do this, but the foul fowl left her no choice.
"Here now, yer doing it wrong."
Pausing in mid-swing, Xara looked over at the farmer. Saldean he'd said his name was. "Doing it wrong? Doing what wrong?"
The old man shook his head. "See, what ya gotta do is make it not scared o' ya. Otherwise ya won't ever get yer little shiny back."
Xara glanced between the man and the chicken, brow furrowed. Saldean nodded. "I'll ya how. First, ya gotta get some special feed. The chickens 'round here love it. Then, ya gotta make it think yer a chicken."
Xara blinked. Then she blinked again. "It has to think I'm a chicken?" she tried saying aloud. It still didn't make any sense.
"Well, ya gotta act like a chicken. Like this."
Saldean folded his arms in an odd manner, then began flapping them while making a horrible noise. "Bawk, bawk" He strutted around, bobbing his head, flapping his arms and bawking for a few seconds, and one of the many chickens around stopped pecking at the ground and looked up at him expectantly.
"I...have to do this?"
"If ya want yer shiny back, yes. But first ya gotta get the special feed."
Xara gave Saldean a dubious look. "How will this help me get my pendant back?"
"If ya can gain the chicken's trust, ya can feed it. It'll drop yer thingy fer the food."
Xara's expression cleared. "Oh, very well then. How do I get some of this special feed?"
"Ya gotta buy it, from me. I'd give ta ya fer free, but with the Defias an' all...I gotta eat ya know."
So, after handing over the silver and getting the feed, Xara proceeded to do as the man had suggested. It took over an hour of her making a fool of herself for the chicken to stop running away and pausing every few steps long enough for her to show it the feed. Just as the man had said, it dropped the pendant and went for the food.
Relieved, Xara picked the pendant up and started back on her way to Sentinel Hill.
It was only later that she realized the chicken had followed her.
Chickens are worse than squirrels. And this keyboard I'm using sucks. You basically have to beat the keys in order to press them down.