The car crawled up the shaded narrow road, the sun finding tiny fissures between the foliage and thin fingers of luminescence scorched small spots on the grass verge. As I progressed, something glinting just ahead caught my eye. I pulled the car onto the verge and alighted. Walking towards the source, I was amazed to see an intricately carved wooden box beside an ancient oak; the sun catching the metal latch and hinges. I felt strangely drawn to it and crouched down, running my fingers lightly over the carvings.
Curiosity drove me on; without hesitation, I flipped the latch and flung open the lid. Inside was a slightly smaller yet identical box. I opened that to find another identical box. It was like having a set of Russian dolls! I opened the third, fourth and fifth, finding what appeared to be a large egg inside. I pulled the decorated egg from the velvet lining, noticing it had a join around the middle and two arrows, one on each half.
Holding the bottom half steady, I twisted the top until the arrows lined up and almost dropped it in shock when the top flipped open and a white mist swirled out and took shape before me. Within thirty seconds a small man stood in front of me, only he wasn’t quite solid. I jumped back in astonishment; the creature chuckled at me in a deeper voice than should have been possible from someone so little.
“H-h-hi,” I spluttered.
“Hello, miss. What do you desire?” said the deep voice.
“Who are y-you?”
“My name is Egbert and I’m going to grant you a wish,” he said.
“Is this a joke?” my already stretched nerves grated.
“Oh no, miss, it’s no yolk,” he started to fall about laughing, “yolk, Eg-bert, get it?”
“Very funny!” I said with a sarcastic tone.
“Eggs-actly!” he called, doubling up, “you’re one amusing chick.”
I paused. Time to play along?
“Okay, old cock. Two can eggs-el at that game,” I giggled. He pursed his lips in displeasure.
“Eggs-iting! I’m not eggs-aggerating – I really want to grant your wish,” he countered.
“You are eggs-ceedingly annoying, do you know that?” I smirked.
He frowned. “That’s a tad eggs-cessive isn’t it?” a hurt tone in his voice.
“It’s so exhausting listening to you. What’s your fascination with eggs anyway?”
“Eggs-hausting? Ha, another good one. Anyway, why wouldn’t I love eggs? I live in one!” he grinned.
I shook my head; he was driving me crazy. “You need an exorcism – I’m sure you’re possessed.”
“Hahaha! Eggs-orcism? You get funnier by the second. I’m an eggs-pert at this and I’m still waiting for an eggs-otic wish from you!” he challenged.
“Can it!” I commanded.
“Sure,” he mumbled. “Do you want some eggs-amples?” now chuckling.
“You’re so exasperating!” I cried.
“Eggs-asperating? Love it! That’s eggs-ellent!” He fell about laughing.
I came to a decision.
“Okay, I’ll make a wish…”
He stared eagerly.
“I wish you’d get back in your damn egg!”