19 July 2024


In a lush, green forest, Jackdaw named Jax made his home. With glossy black feathers and a striking beak, he stood out as the most handsome of his kind. Everyone knew Jax, and boy, did Jax know about his own good looks!


Hours on end, Jax would gaze at his reflection in the still pond, admiring the way he looked. He’d preen his feathers, making sure each one was just perfect. No doubt about it, Jax was the proudest bird in all the forest.

The Enchantress

One fine day, by the pond, as Jax was busy with his feathers, along came an enchantress. She was as beautiful as she was mysterious, with hair flowing like a river and a smile soft and gentle. She offered Jax the chance to have the most beautiful feathers in the world, feathers so fine they’d make every bird green with envy.

The Enchantment

Jax could hardly contain his excitement as the enchantress prepared her magic. With a graceful flick of her wand, a cascade of sparkles enveloped him. Suddenly, his feathers gleamed a brilliant gold, catching the sunlight and turning him into a dazzling spectacle. Birds from all corners of the forest gathered to witness this transformation, their eyes wide with wonder.

The Transformation

Now, with his golden feathers sparkling like tiny suns, Jax felt on top of the world. He soared above the canopy, gliding and twirling, showing off his radiant plumage. Everywhere he went, other birds stopped to stare, their admiration feeding his pride. “Look at me!” he’d squawk, basking in the attention. He felt more special than ever, convinced his beauty was unmatched.

The Consequences

As days turned into weeks, Jax’s initial joy began to wane. His obsession with his appearance grew, consuming all his time. Mornings once spent singing and exploring were now wasted in front of mirrors, fussing over every feather. Friends who once enjoyed his company now found him distant, too preoccupied with his looks to join in their fun. Slowly, the realization dawned on him that his splendid feathers had cost him something precious – the simple pleasures of forest life.

The Realization

Jax’s wings beat hard against the air as he soared above the verdant canopy, a golden blur against the blue sky. Below, a pond mirrored the world above, catching his eye. Gliding downward for a closer look, he was startled by the reflection staring back at him. Gone was the lustrous sheen of his golden feathers, replaced by a dull, scruffy coat that seemed to weigh him down. In that moment, Jax understood the heavy price of his vanity. The joy of flight, the camaraderie with other birds, all sacrificed on the altar of pride. A twinge of regret pulsed through him, stronger than the flapping of his wings. He realized he had lost touch with the simple pleasures of being a Jackdaw.

The Apology

With a heavy heart, Jax made his way back to the enchantress. Landing before her with less of his usual flair, he hung his head low. “I’ve been a fool,” he confessed, his voice a mere whisper against the rustling of the leaves. “These golden feathers, they’ve cost me more than I ever imagined. I’ve lost myself, lost the joy in the little things. Please, can you take them back? I want to find joy in just being me again, not in what I look like.” His words tumbled out, sincere and raw. The enchantress listened, her eyes softening as Jax poured out his heart, showing a vulnerability he had never allowed himself to acknowledge before.

The Reward

The enchantress, moved by Jax’s honesty and humility, raised her wand. With a gentle wave, magic sparkled in the air, swirling around Jax. As the golden glow faded, he felt a lightness he hadn’t realized he’d been missing. Looking down, he saw his feathers had returned to their original glossy black. But this time, he felt no urge to admire himself or seek the admiration of others. Instead, a profound sense of contentment filled him. He thanked the enchantress with a grateful nod and took off, eager to rejoin his friends in the forest. As he flew, he laughed and played, diving and darting with a joy that was pure and unencumbered. Jax had learned that true happiness didn’t come from outward appearances, but from embracing oneself, imperfections and all.

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