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Matti & Mika: Spring Meltdown: Chapter 4 Matti & Mika: Spring Meltdown: Chapter 4
by Thanos K & Asa B
2007-02-20 09:52:35
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“Is it really true, Mr. Whitey? I mean all the stories I have heard!” Matti had hopped closer to the swan, with Mika still standing a couple of meters away. Mika’s stomach felt heavy with bad feeling for this conversation but it seemed that the little magpie couldn’t hear a word. The swan continued to look bored with the meeting and was more interested in tapping the ice in search of food leaving the small bird’s hopes for more information ignored.

“There must be mountains of food there, Mr. Whitey, is that true?” The swan sighed and finally turned his long and thin neck slowly towards the little magpie, “Mountains? You must be joking little bid. There are lakes of food!” Matti didn’t understand at first, but then he remembered that swans live near big lakes and not high mountains. “Oh, of course, Mr. Whitey, sir! And are there magpies there, sir?”

Once again the swan turned his head toward the magpie and then gave him a very strange look, “Your question should be if there are magpies here at this time of the year and not if there are magpies there! What do you think, moose?” Mika was getting angrier by the minute and he could not understand his little friend anymore. Couldn’t he see the arrogant style of the swan? Couldn’t he see the way the big white bird was treating him, as though he was a small worm and not a magpie with a heroic past?

“We are going south, Mr. Whitey. There will be lots of magpies for Matti where we are going!” Mika was too angry and you could see it in the way he had stormed into the conversation. “Really…and how far south are you going, Mr. Moose? Because there is a whole world of difference between south for you and south for a bird,” lazily answered the bird seemingly ignoring Mika’s anger. “South enough!” growled Mika, and, at that moment, he regretted letting his anger rule him.

The magpie turned to Mika, "Please Mika. Tell me, how far south are we going?” Mika looked down at his friend and tried to understand what had happened to them in such a short time. “Matti, do you think this is the right time to talk about it? Let us have some rest, eat our snack and we can talk about it – you can even have my cookie today.” Mika was trying to avoid answering the question because he could sense that whatever he said would be wrong.

Obviously the swan didn’t want to leave it there, “How far south can a moose go? Perhaps to the lakes in the east or to the lakes in the west, unless you can fly or swim!” Mika hoped Matti wouldn’t tell the swan he did fly once and thankfully the magpie was lost in his thoughts and hadn’t heard the statement. “And what are you going to find there, Mr. Moose? Snow and more snow and ice. Of course, you might find enough grass to keep you happy, but will you find fresh fruits everywhere? Will you find a feast of seeds waiting for you? Will you find the warm sun to heat your feathers and hot water to clean your body?” Mika was feeling defeated, not because he didn’t know how to answer but he didn’t want to say anything about a place he had never been, although he didn’t know whether the swan had been there either.

Everything Mr. Whitey had said had been in his own thoughts for a long time, but now a stranger was saying them out loud made them impossible to ignore. “I’ve had enough of you two!” snapped the swan, and with that he stretched out his impressive white wings and prepared to take off, “You follow your way to the south magpie and you moose… go to your lakes! Goodbye to both of you!” Then he took off and flew across the lake.

They stood in silence watching the swan vanish into the distance, and then Matti took off his hat and removed his daily cookie. “I don’t really feel like eating it today…do you want it?” Mika knew then that the moment of separation had come, “No, Matti. Put it back in the hat because I think you will need it on your long journey alone.” A tear rolled down the bird’s cheek, “Mika, I must do it.” Mika swallowed a lump that was building his own throat and whispered, “I know my friend.”

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