High above the bustling street, under the shade of the gum leaves, rustling in the warm summer breeze. Up high, looking down into the classroom window. There in the protective shade sat a council of three, who guarded the one that was behind the glass.

"Its time has come." muttered one who lay within the darkest shade, off to the right. Leaning forward eagerly, black eyes gleaming, "Now is my time to act."

"Wait! It can't be time for that! Look at it! It's still way too young!" argued another who was sunning himself in the strong midday sun, over to the left. Facing his fellow, the strong golden light reflected in his eyes. The third figure remain silent in the middle, listening carefully to the argument, but never taking her eyes off the window, remaining still with the gentle grey shadows, blending in.

The three sat, side by side, in one straight line. All the same, but then completely different.

The jolly Wiradhuri, who sat furthest to the left and closest to the sunlight. His whole being seemed to be of golden light, like the sand on the local beaches, or the sunrise over the bay. He was a lively being, loud and always laughing. He was a guardian of all that breathed.

The black Yuwaalaraay, who sat far to the right, sitting in the cold darkness. He was an embodiment of all that slept, painted black as the deepest part of the ocean, and as bold as the night sky. He was solemn and strict, though gentle to all under his care. He was the guardian of the never ending night.

And then the silent Berrimilla, sitting in the middle, fading into all. Her air was that of calm, kind, and quite. Fading into the shade, a figure of floating fog and falling rain, and silver-white as the Southern Cross. Silent, but watchful, she was the guardian of keeping the harmony.

"Wiradhuri, why do you always argue with me on such matters. Do you think I am incapable of my job?" Yuwaalaraay asked in a calm voice, looking sideways at his golden acquaintance, black eyes flashing.

"I never said that! But Yuwaalaraay! Please! Give me more time! It still has so much to-" Wiradhuri argued but Yuwaalaraay retorted, "Stop being so selfish Wiradhuri. You can't use such excuses on me. What? 'It still has so much to do?' Give me a break! You just want to keep it all to your self!"

"That's not true!" Wiradhuri huffed, puffing out his chest in protest. Now both the gold and black faced each other, eye to eye, towering over the silent figure of white, sitting between them, who didn't seem to notice their quarrel. She remained silent, still, a watchful fading shadow. Her eyes never leaving the window, her keen senses honed on the one figure, watching it's every move.

The heated argument taking place above her had increased, both Yuwaalaraay and Wiradhuri had drawn themselves up to full height, taking their focus off of their target and fully arguing with each other. The noise increased, to an echoing mass of screeches and curses, kicking up such a fury that their sound seemed to echo in the air. But before the argument became physical Berrimilla made her presence known, spreading her arms like graceful wings, her eyes glowing a brilliant white from the usual dull grey. Her voice gentle yet powerful, sweet as bird song rose in the air silencing all other sounds, "My brothers … be still."

Though the other guardians were much bigger then she, they immediately became silent, looking down at the small figure of Berrimilla between them, shining in the brilliance of the far away stars, feeling her rare branch of power breathe through all. They both settled down, backing away from each other, giving their sister room out of respect, bowing their heads, ready to hear her rare moments of advice. They sat silent for what seemed a long time, watching their sister who remained watching the window, until they heard the faint words, "My brothers … have you forgotten what we hold?"

"Berrimilla! Of course not! How could we forget-" Wiradhuri protested hotly, but stopped as she turned her head slightly, looking at him with a single glowing white eye, and he immediately became silent.

"Ah! The ever silent Berrimilla! Speaking up so suddenly-" Yuwaalaraay teased, his dark figure towering over her, but with one glance at her serious face, and a flick of her glowing white feathery hair, he backed down. Both the giant figures of gold and black yielding to the smaller figure that shined such a bright white.

"Do you take your jobs seriously as guardians my brothers?" she asked, in voice that was as soft as a whisper, "Of coarse Berrimilla" Yuwaalaraay replied, and Wiradhuri responded, "It is our duty."

"Duty? Is it duty that we serve?" Berrimilla asked, her face hidden from view. The other two looked to each other in confusion, then Wiradhuri replied, "Of – of course Berrimilla. What else but duty?"

Berrimilla remained silent, arms crossed and head bowed in thought, her glowing white eyes never leaving the window. For a moment there was complete silence, then with a voice filled with disappointment Berrimilla said, "I see. So you two really have forgotten our quest …"

The shocked silence that followed seemed to carry for eternity, as the truth of her words slowly sunk into her brother's minds.

"You have forgotten what we hold, what we keep, and what we guard. In a time when our services are most needed … and you my brothers are arguing. This is not acceptable!" Berrimilla said in a level voice, not raising her tone, but that in its self was a warning to her brothers of her real anger.

"We … the guardians … given the important job of guiding and protecting … this one child …" she spoke, as if thinking aloud, all turning to look down at the figure within the window.

"For years we have cared and guided, from the moment of this mortals birth. We have been placed upon the duty of this mortals well being. We have been there all it's life … we have shared every moment with our ward. Every breath, every tear, every heart beat … we have been there. The three guardians, sheltering it from the storms of life with our wide spread wings."

Berrimilla leaned back, white eyes never leaving the window, moving as to keep the giant figures of the gold and black of her brothers within her eye sight. Wiradhuri and Yuwaalaraay remained, heads bowed in submission, looking down at their charge, who sat so innocently, not knowing that its life was in question.

"Yuwaalaraay. As guardian of the darkness of death, the time of judgment has come. Now is the moment of deciding our charges destiny. Shall it die, as young as it is, as soon as it leaves the building?" Berrimilla asked calmly, as if the subject didn't bother her at all, watching her dark brother out of the corner of her eye. Yuwaalaraay seemed unnerved or unsure how to act as he replied, "It-it is true that as soon as it walks out of the door our charge will be affected by an incident, that could harm its life-" and Wiradhuri interrupted "Shall I interfere? We can't let our charge die!" Both brothers looked to Berrimilla, who remained silent, shining as a distant star, then replied in a voice as soft as rainfall, "Remember we are only guardians. We can not make our charges decisions for it."

"But Berrimilla-!" the others protested, but seeing her face, almost hidden from view, full of grief and remorse, shining silver tears streaking down her pale face, like falling stars, she said, "As much as we care for our ward … we must not interfere. They must choose their destiny. All we can do now is stand by them … care and guard them as only we can," Berrimilla said, looking down with watery eyes, watching what could be her charges last living moments, "There is nothing we can do … it is up to her now."

"Hey! Kara! What's up? What you looking at?" asked a classmate coming over to my desk. I answer, looking out the window, "Look! There's a strange group of birds!"

"Birds?" she asked, raising her eyebrow at me, then looking out the window where I'm pointing, "Yeah! Look! A kookaburra, a kingfisher, and a black cockatoo!"

"Hey yeah! That is weird! All sitting on the same branch too …" she said absentmindedly, looking at the birds. Another student came over to look too as he said, "You know black cockatoo's are supposed to a sign of rain, or bad luck."

"How can a bird so beautiful be bad luck? And how can rain be bad?" I ask the boy, but he just shrugged, standing at the door, holding it open for us, "Just something I heard. Any way, periods over. Come on you two, or we'll be late!" The other girl did a little shriek, grabbing her books and raced out the door without another word, and I got a strange feeling that I'd never see her again. I shook the feeling off, grabbed my books, pushed in my chair, and walked over to the boy, still holding the door open for me. At the door way I looked back to the window just in time to see the three birds fly away together, 'Such a strange group of birds' I thought to myself.

"Well, are we going?" the boy asked, still holding the door. "Oh! Yeah! Come on! We'll be late!" I say rushing out the door, running with the boy out into the blinding sunlight … the classroom door slowly closed … the audible click of the door closing was the last sound that was heard … echoing over eternity.