Animal Sanctuary (Part-2)

Read Animal Sanctuary (Part-1)

Down by the Western fringes of the farm, a few goats grazed beside a great herd of buffaloes wallowing in the swamp. Caked in mud, they masticated. The only female in the herd, Fatty Beast – a fair, chunky, massive-uddered beast – stood aloof masticating memories of a successful raid the previous night.

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Buffalo by M. Baldwin

From the East, a truant Cat was laboring down to Buffalo territory where a signboard said ‘Buffaloes Never Play’ (often abbreviated) – the grave war-cry of the buffaloes. Fatty the Buffalo saw the Cat and walked up to him urgently. What news? The cat eagerly divulged the Cows’ plans and his mistress seemed happy. So, the Cat, with no further adieu, sprang on Fatty’s teats for a milk-treat. Suckling a Godless Cat was a steep price to pay – but on the farm, milk was a rare currency.

Fatty’s advisor the Goat with a Goatee cringed at the sight. “So”, the Goat, “she said Cows fought in the exodus? Honorable Fatty – we should be insulted”.

“We are insulted”, Fatty said mindlessly.

“And she also said that she and her amulet had saved everyone during the Takeover”, the Cat nagged from Fatty’s udder.

“Hah! Takeover!’ the Goat with a Goatee objected vehemently, ‘there was never any takeover – the humans left graciously because they wanted animals to own farms. I kid you not.”

“But we lost ears and tails in the Takeover! Besides, amulets can be powerful”, some of the buffaloes had come by and now sounded apprehensive, ‘we just want our fodder’.

“You are all udder failures”, the Goat with a Goatee cried, “You will lose your lives this time. They will tattoo the words Fake Cow on all your rumps! I alone could go teach Old Cow a lesson – and there are scores of you! Fatty? Will you not avenge your kind?”

“That  scoundrel cow deserves to be kicked to death by a jackass”, Fatty growled standing up, “and I’m  just the one to do it”. She looked majestic, caked in mud. The buffaloes remembered once again why all of them were so in love with Fatty. The Godless Cat too, got the goosebumps and sucked even harder.

The Goat came up beside Fatty, “outside  of the killings, the farm had one of the lowest crime rates when buffaloes and goats were in charge. Now the cows are milking the citizens dry …”

“But they got such a huge bunch of cows!” a buffalo said timidly.

“Not a bunch – herd”, the Goat retorted, irritated by the cowardly, idiotic behemoths.

“Heard of what?” the buffalo didn’t get it.

“Herd of cows!”

“Of course we’ve heard of cows – why? Haven’t you?”

“No – arghh …a cow herd!”

“What do I care what a cow heard? I have nothing to hide from a cow!”

The Goat with a Goatee punched the air with futility and did everything to keep himself from tearing off his goatee. There could be no consultation here. He would just have to do – the buffaloes could follow. They always did – those milk duds! The Goat ordered the loyal animals to assemble immediately.

***

A motley crew of animals and birds gathered by the Buffaloes’ signboard. Fatty – now fully briefed – stood up and thrust her udder out – sending the cat flying to the ground. The Goat with a Goatee smirked and positioned himself behind her like a shadow.

Fatty spoke with trained conviction, “animals and birdies, the time to hesitate is through. No time to wallow in the mire…”

“Ooh la la – come on Fatty light my fire”, thought the Godless Cat to himself.

“Stop talking in lyrics Fatty!” a monkey shrieked.

Oh! How Fatty hated monkeys! Still she continued, “the cows are stealing our food, spreading lies about the Takeover …”

“Heh heh …Honorable Fatty means Exodus‘, the Goat interjected, ‘Exodus – not Takeover. Surely there never was a takeover!”

“So cows are trying to banish us and our friends …you creatures – so that they can hog the farm …”

“Now, that’s just racist”, cried the Hog. He was quickly snuffed out by the Kids – those vicious, little goatlets. There was a commotion and the rally was about to be sidetracked by in-fighting.

“Plan-B! Plan-B”, the Goat said hoarsely.

“Cows are liars”, now the Goat began to speak from behind Fatty, who had to lip-sync,  “Old Cow says their solutions are fact-based. I say, solutions are not the answer. Facts are just stupid! Its been written on the Exodus Tablet for decades”, he handed Fatty to hold up what some suspected was dried dung.

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Goat with a Goatee (Deviantart Shaytan666)

“And we know what happens when you ignore the teaching of the dung: the humans come back, skin us alive and skewer us over fires of our own dung. But more than that, you know that buffaloes – not lowly cows – were meant to inherit our farm. And Goats will serve Buffaloes. We are the chosen ones!”

“Chosen ones”, chanted the goats, kids and buffaloes.

“Did she just say teachings of the dung?” the monkey muttered, puzzled.

“What about the amulet?” asked a meek buffalo.

“We will shove it up Old Cows ass! Don’t forget, tablet trumps amulet. So animals and birdies …”

“We object to being called birdies!” the Swan had somehow reached in time to seek redress.

‘Well …screw you birdies! Throw them out of the farm – and clip their wings so that they may never return!”

The Kids sprang into action. They were adept in slitting and slicing. There was an odd silence as the birdies gave in without so much as a cluck. The point was made and the audience did not raise any more questions.

“We, the chosen ones, will go into the farm, drive out the Cows, kill the Owl, spare the Fox, inherit everything – and then return to humble service of the animals. For, my friends, it is written”, the Goat shrieked like an evangelist, seeing a familiar frenzy brewing in the crowd.

“It is written”, rejoiced the Kids.

“It.is.written”, chanted the Goats.

“Buffaloes never playyyyy”, screamed Fatty.

“Buffaloes never playyyyy”, followed the crowd.

The cat slinked out unnoticed. Behind him, slogans and chants whirled around each other, spiraled upwards, drowning each other out – till only a thunderous commotion and udder chaos  reverberated beneath the skies. Not too far away, defenseless animals prayed that the amulet worked.

Both camps hoped the farm (or sanctuary) was worth it.

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