“Yes, if only others had the wisdom to ask us, they’d know what we know!” the first bird cackled.

“Fine,” Mocks said. “Tell me what you know, then?”

“Why should we?” the second squawked. “If we hadn’t said anything, if we hadn’t been as talkative as we are wise, you’d have passed under here unawares.”

“Shooing us away with your blundering, not even giving any food.”

“All right, all right. What’s it going to take, then, to share what you know?”

“Food always helps,” said the second bird.

“Yeah, got any food for us?”

Mocks patted through pockets and pouches, coming up with a granola bar that crumbled easily to the ground.

“Well? Back off, then!” the birds said. “We’re not gonna eat it with you right there.”

“Yeah, could be a trick! A trick to catch us and eat us.”

“Why wouldn’t I just eat the granola?” Mocks said. “And you’re way too small and…gamey…to eat.”

“Sounds like something a bird-eater would say. Go on! Get lost.”

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