Disclaimer: This is just to say that I have absolutely nothing against sheep.        

Just a Day

It was one of those disgustingly beautiful days.  The sun was high and bright overhead and not a cloud could be seen for miles.  The mountains stood stalwartly against the perfect azure of the sky as every now and again a few ravens or blue birds flew overhead.  The grass was perfectly green.  The air was gloriously warm yet still held a tinge of crispness to it.  And the town of Machynlleth was as lazy as ever.

            The small Welsh town was built around a relatively large sheep pasture, the legend being that the people couldn't get the sheep to move no matter how hard they tried, so their houses had to be built in accordance to wherever the sheep felt like relaxing or eating at any given point in time.  These particular sheep, however, were behaving much more oddly than anyone would have expected of them.

            Farmer Jones awoke just after dawn as always, tugging on his worn, woollen jumper and dark-coloured trousers and trudged outside.  It had rained the day before so the ground was soggy and slick, the mud squelching beneath his green Wellingtons.  He stopped briefly at the barn to load a cart full of straw, hopped on the tractor and chugged over to the sheep-fold.  The animals were standing or lounging lazily upon the soft green grass as he approached.

            "Bore da, Mr. Jones!" he heard Farmer Davies call from across the road, the old man tending to his herb garden out front of the house.  "Fine day, isn't it?"

            "Aye!" Farmer Jones called back.  "Lovely day, it is."

            "How's the missus?"

"Never better, never better.  She and the girls are heading down to Cardiff today.  Christmas shopping she claims."

Farmer Davies let out a laugh.  "You're in for a bit of a surprise later, then, when they return.  We both know how women are."

The two men both laughed loudly at that.

Suddenly, though, they heard the most disturbing sound.

"Baa-aa-aa-aa—SPLORCH!"

"What was that, then?" asked Farmer Jones.

"I haven't the foggiest, like," replied the other.

Jones shut off his tractor and hopped off, he and his neighbour heading over in the direction of the odd noise, right over to the sheep pen.  There at the near-right corner was a red splat of…something…that looked like it had once been a sheep.  Currently, it was a very flat and woolly-looking red thing with its legs flat out in the formation of an X.  The other sheep milled about as if ignorant to one of their fellows having deflated entirely.

"Bleedin' hell," muttered Jones in wonder.  "How the blazes did that happen?"

Davies could only shrug in return.  "I've never seen anything like it in me life."

"Neither have I."

Without warning, another sheep let out a bleating before suddenly being catapulted into the air, spinning about rapidly as it bounced along the sodden ground, each hit altering the bleating in such a way that it sounded like the noise was literally being forced out through the animal's throat.  Jones and Davies both watched, arms resting on the wood of the fence, their heads and eyes following the motion of the bouncing sheep until it finally came to a squishy landing in a mud hole, its hind legs poised most ungracefully in the air.

"Right," said Davies, slowly.  "Mr. Jones…I think you'd best see to your flock."

"I should, like," replied Jones, wide-eyed as he watched the second sheep try its utmost to pull its head from the mud, its legs bike-pedalling in open air.  "I'm wondering what could possibly be amiss with them, though."

"I haven't the foggiest," said Davies again, "but whatever it is, you'd better figure it out quickly.  And when you do, open a circus."

"I'll do more than that.  I'll bloody be the first man to ever move sheep from the pasture of Machynlleth!"

~~~*~~~*~~~*~~~

            Gwen Jenkins stepped through the automatic doors of the WHSmith bookshop at the shopping centre in Caerphilly just across from the castle.  Her arms were laden with parcels that she was now going home to wrap up for the Christmas holiday for her family.  Making her way in the direction of the car park in front of Safeway, she shifted all the bags to her one arm as she reached into her jacket pocket for her keys, jerking her head sharply to flick her black hair out of her face.  She paused in mid-action, standing right at the edge of the brick pavement as she heard the strangest thing coming from above.  Looking up, she squinted into the bright sunlight, noting that several other people were doing the same thing.  There, a good thousand feet up and still dropping was a whitish yellow form that didn't seem to be anything identifiable until it was nearly down to the ground.

"Get out of the way!" someone cried out, and everyone in the square made for the nearest shops as quickly as they were able—Gwen included.

A moment later, there was a loud SPLAT from the car park.  Turning to look, the young woman saw a most intriguing sight.  A sheep had fallen from out of nowhere, committing pointless suicide on the asphalt.  Gwen looked back up to the sky, hoping to see an aeroplane or the like, but there was nothing.  The sheep had simply fallen.

"Oh, but the world is comin' to an end!" shrieked some old woman.  "An end!"

Gwen looked to the woman, then to the sheep, then briskly continued her walk back to her car.  She decided that, after what she'd seen just then, nothing else could possibly surprise her.  Sheep from the sky.  Even in Wales, such a thing had never been heard of let alone actually seen.

She tossed her bags into the back seat of her black 2001 Land Rover and jumped in, slamming her door the same instant she shoved the key into the ignition.  Hitting the pedal, she pealed out of the car park and headed eastwards toward Caerleon.  Mum had to hear about this.  Mum had to hear about the whole thing.