IN THE QUARTERS OF MR. HIGGINS ABOARD THE HER MAJESTY BLIMP – IN AIR
Mr. Higgins is sitting on his bed in his dinner attire. His black bow tie is untied and drapes around his neck. In his hands is a small pink flower that he twirls between his thumb and forefinger. His mouth quirks into an almost smile. He holds the recorder properly in the other hand. He is sober.
“In search of the Unicorn: tape fourteen, entry three. I was asked this evening at dinner by the gentle Miss Wellington whose room is just down the hall what a unicorn looked liked.”
Mr. Higgins stops. He looks down at the flower and then over at the door, indecisive about something. Abruptly he gets up and walks over, opening the door. Leaning out he gazes down the empty hall, longing and trepidation evident on his face. After a few minutes he shakes his head morosely, and closes the door, putting the flower down on the dresser. He returns to his recorder and stops it, winding the tape back slowly.
“In preparation for my upcoming interview with an infamous unicorn tamer and the subsequent article that will be expected by the Naturalist Society to be of the upmost factual basis, I shall recite what I know about the animal I am researching, the Equus Unicornis known in unscientific terms as the Unicorn. When I listen to this recording in the future, I will know what corrections need to be made after the evidence presented by Miss Hehewuti. Thus as far as we of the Royal Naturalist Society are aware, there is not any factual proof the animal exists. Although there have been many accounts of sightings of the elusive beast, especially by explorers to the Americas, no one has yet been able to capture a photograph. Based on these sightings, if the animal does indeed exist, it resembles a small horse, but is chubby like a donkey with a stick-like protrusion coming from its forehead referred to as the alicorn. There is also speculation the creature also may have a shaggy mane and cloven hooves. Although most accounts claim the Unicorn is white in colour, it has been stated it has been seen in all different colours, including multi-coloured. This is, of course not to be believed, and most likely the animal in question will have a white coat. There are also wild claims that the Unicorn can heal water and is attracted to virgins, which also in all probability are nothing more than exaggerations. This information I hope to have validated by my meeting with Miss Hehewuti. In search of the Unicorn: tape fourteen, entry three.”
Mr. Higgins turns off the recorder. He avoids looking at the flower, as he gets up to undress. He continues not to look at it as he performs his nightly ablutions and gets into bed. After a quick shamefaced peek to see the flower still sitting on his dresser across the room, he turns off the light.