The Human told me that it was to be a 'clockwork sculpture'. They said that it would be a centrepiece for the new plaza, to celebrate the peace between our species, and symbolise the harmonious flow of time and the onward march of progress. I spent months on the project.

Finally, the day came. The diplomats gathered for the treaty ceremony, dressed in their finery. I could barely pay attention to the speeches, so excited was I to see their reaction. I was so nervous! The Human speech ran long, and I worried that they might delay the unveiling until it was after the first hour. But eventually, they concluded.
"And," said the ambassador, "to celebrate our newfound peace, and as a symbol of the harmonious relationship between our species, I am honoured to unveil the Celebration Clock!"

He swept aside the covering, and there was a brief, awed hush. The glass tubes shone in the sun, the fur of the native rodents shone white and lustrous. And the hour struck! The qlpt burst forth in a brilliant shower of red circulatory fluid, a beautiful shock against the pure white fur. Their wings flashed luminous as they shook them clean, and they set up a perfectly pitched hum as they vibrated in unison. Flawless!

The Humans shouted in affirmation, and began a ritual expulsion of undigested food. High praise! The ambassador, perhaps warned of my tendency to grandstand, hustled me quickly away before I could succumb to their adulations.

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