Somewhere close to where the land and sky fuse together, the sun cast a soft vibrant mixture of orange and scarlet light as it slowly began to set upon the horizon. The summer day was drawing to a close and everything across the borders of the Blue Bird Sanctuary seemed to stand still, lost forever in time.
Fireflies hovered through the air, blinking their pale translucent bodies as they searched for their mates. Crickets chirped as the sky darkened and the first glimpse of night descended upon the Earth. This was the signs of the times at hand. For the first time in years, the Rainforest was at peace.
Blu breathed inwards as he stood perched upon a lone branch. With his wings folded close to his body, he let his feathers rustle in the gathering breeze. The feeling of tranquility swept across his entire being as he stood motionless, his eyes closed and a smile blanketed upon his face. He had read of several moments like this during his time with Linda, but he had never experienced such a thing first hand. His mind seemed to dwell upon one of his most favourite of memories, which only caused his smile to deepen.
It had been on an evening very similar to this that he had been on a trolley cart. It had been on an evening like this that he had tried to tell Jewel that he loved her. It had also been that same evening that they had shared their first kiss when he had jumped from an airplane to die with her, only to find out that he could fly. Now his life had changed forever. He was married to the love of his life, he was the father of three beautiful hatchlings, and even Linda herself had gone to become a ranger for the Blue Bird Sanctuary.
Yes, it was those memories that Blu cherished the most. Standing there, lost in thought, he failed to hear the familiar sounds of talons scraping against wood.
"Good evening, Pet" a familiar voice called out, "enjoying the evening are we?"
Blu jumped with fright, his eyes opened as he turned to stare at the beautiful stix macaw female. Standing eye to eye, he stared into hers mischievously. He knew full well that she could read his response, and that she had noticed the smile on his face. He couldn't hide anything from her, not that he would want too anyways.
"Uh, yeah… um good evening, Jewel." Blu stumbled, swatting at a bug which flew across his beak.
"What brings you out this far, Blu?" Jewel asked, her eyes narrowing. "You weren't day dreaming again were you?"
Blu shook his head and tried his best to keep himself sounding smooth and confident.
"I don't day dream. I just enjoy spending my time staring at the sunset. I never really got a chance to see it back in Moose Lake, there was too much pollution, and smog, and…"
Blu's voice trailed off as he noticed the sarcastic look simmering in the female's eyes. Her wicked smile never leaving her face as she listened to her mate's explanation.
"Ya-huh, I don't believe you. I have never once heard you say a single bad thing about Tiny-sota, and yet now you're talking about smog and pollution. Come on, tell me the truth… you were day dreaming about the time we met, weren't you?"
Blu nodded, his bright blue feathers turning red as he began to sweat and blush.
"I knew it," Jewel's voice rang out confidently, "You were day dreaming, and it was about me. You're luck… because if you had really come out to watch the sunset, I would have tanned your nerdy butt. You left the children unattended again."
Blu lowered his head a little sheepishly.
"I'm sorry about that, Jewel. I didn't think I was that far away from the nest. I was keeping an ear out for them."
Blu watched Jewel's smile fad from her face. She nodded and lowered herself to lie on the branch.
"I know, the children certainly can be a handful can't they?" She sighed. "But the time will come when you'll have to learn how to take your responsibilities seriously. We need to work together, and raise the children right."
Blu shuddered as Jewel's words struck him in the heart. His eyes narrowed, his head lowered as he wiped a solitary tear from his eye.
"Are you saying I don't know how to take care of our children?" he asked. "I lived without both of my parents. Until I met Linda, I had no one. Then I met you, and everything swung around full circle. I am trying to be a good father to the best of my abilities."
"You're a good father, Blu," Jewel smiled, "really, I don't know what we would do without you."
Blu's face brightened slightly at the compliment but he knew deep down that she was only saying that to make him feel better.
"Come on," Jewel smiled. "Let's go home."
# # #
Far from Blu and Jewel's location… far beneath the city of Rio De Janeiro… far from the prying eyes of others, sat the very definition of evil. The cockatoo named Nigel stood to attention. His razor talons prodded through a silk cloth covering his body, with each footstep he took, his talons scratched the stone floor of an abandoned subway tunnel. Surrounded by his new found followers, and fellow bird murderers, the cockatoo laughed insanely.
"Welcome, welcome… my friends." The cockatoo hissed. "I presume you know why you're here?"
A large rather grotesque and fat monkey stumbled forward. His eyes shined a bright red tinge in the dim light.
"Why don't you enlighten us?"
"Patience, my friend." Nigel soothed, "I am sure you will be pleasantly surprised."
The monkey spit with disgust at the cockatoo's words. His eyes shimmered dangerously.
"I hate surprises. Why don't you tell me now, or I'm gone."
Nigel cocked his head to one side and removed his garbs, revealing his scarred and featherless body.
"I want my revenge… and you my friends are going to help me."
"What if we refuse?" The monkey asked, eyeing the hideous creature.
"Than you're life is as good as gone. I know several groups of Smugglers just dying to get their hands on new prey. It would be a shame if they were to get their hands on you."
Nigel forced a confident smile as he watched the monkey back away. He had won the argument with nothing more than a simple threat… and it was a threat he had every intention on bringing to reality.
"As I said, I want my revenge… there is a single Blue Macaw out there, you will bring him to me alive and unharmed."
A group of Margay stepped forward from the darkness. Their eyes glistened as they stared at the cockatoo.
"All of this trouble for a blue macaw? What did he do?"
Nigel shuddered and placed a wing upon the nearest stone wall. He lowered his head and sighed.
"I never was a pretty bird, in fact I worked for humans. We were going to sell the last two Blue Macaws for a large sum of money. While making our get away, the male macaw fastened a fire extinguisher to my leg and threw me from the plane… I don't think you'll understand how much it hurts to have your feathers ripped from you as you are cut by a propeller blade… but Blu will understand the pain once I get my claws on him."
The large cockatoo cackled to himself as he snapped his beak forward. He waved a single wing dismissing his comrades.
"Now get going, I want Blu brought to me before sundown tomorrow evening. Be careful, he is a smart creature, and is not to be underestimated."
Nigel watched as the gathering of creatures headed off through out the subway tunnels. His eyes slit dangerously as he proceeded to talk to himself.
"Oh, Blu, believe me… you'll never see you're lovely little girl again… especially when I rip your feathers out one at a time, and turn them into my beautiful new coat."
The large cockatoo cackled to himself as he waved a single wing. "Now get going, I want Blu brought to me before sundown tomorrow night."