You saw it coming, didn’t you?
“What are these eggs doing here?” asked my flatmate.
“They kept falling out of the fridge,” I replied, hoping that having practiced the lie would make me sound plausible.
The truth was, when I tried to put the whole box in the fridge, the box started trembling. I opened it, and two of the eggs on the end were shaking- no, not shaking. Shivering as if they were a New Zealander in the middle of their first British winter.
I was less surprised by that than by the fact that one was bright pillar-box red, and the other a rich grassy green. It wasn’t Easter, and even if it was I was pretty sure that Farmer Norbert’s Fresh Free Range Egg Company wasn’t in the habit of dying eggs, just a couple, at random in their boxes and sending them to the local Londis. Yet there they were, shivering.
My flatmate didn’t think anything of the colour- I do a lot of painting, I think she just assumed I’d got bored. She still hadn’t forgotten the shower curtain incident. She didn’t ask why the eggs were on top of the radiator, and I was glad of it. I didn’t think she’d understand if I said that when I picked them up out of the box, it felt like they should be warmer than they were.
So they sat there, on the radiator, for weeks. If people noticed when they came round, they didn’t say anything. Like I said, I paint. They just assume there’s an artistic reason for everything.
I was glad it was just me when the things hatched. I found a manual, in a bookshop at the end of a tiny backstreet and a two-hour hunt, that explained that when I touched the shells, I took responsibility for them. It made sense. And they are truly beautiful. Although I can’t really keep books in the house anymore. They don’t last long enough for me to read them.
I’ve had to move to the back end of beyond, now. It’s the only place I could afford with enough space for one girl, three cats, and two dragons.
I’m just glad they’re a pygmy breed.