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We Need To Talk About the Unicorn in Your Back Yard

Mari Ness writes wonderful stories that appear many places, including often enough in the sparkly pixels of Daily Science Ficton.
Warm greetings from the Oak Hills Homeowners Association!
The many Neighborhood Watch signs decorating our windows and doors notwithstanding, we really don't want to come across as if we're spying on our neighbors or anything, even if the Neighborhood Watch takes considerable gratification in discovering that the Gerbers were responsible for planting the Bermuda grass which is rapidly consuming the very nice St. Augustine grass that the Blythes spent so many long years carefully tending, and even if we are proud to announce that we finally figured out just why so many cars show up at the Grahams every Tuesday night. (It's not the sort of thing we want to put down in a letter like this. Call Fred for details.) Mostly, as you know, we're all about watching people who aren't neighbors. The less we know about each other, we figure, the better.
(Although the gossip about the Grahams is pretty good. Really, call Fred.)
However, despite our concern about seeming, shall we say, over-inquisitive, we feel we must inform you that Neighborhood Watch members have informed us that they can no longer ignore the following sights and/or activities in or near your yard:
1. A new, six foot high fence.
2. The delivery of several large bales of hay, labeled, and we quote, "Enchanted Hay--For a Magical Ride!"
3. A distinct scent that many of us typically associate with irregularly cleaned barns.
4. The arrival of several hunters clad in forest green, holding bows, dragging with them various young people whom we assume remain in a virginal state, although we didn't really want to ask.
5. Sightings of a thin, narrow white object just above the fence, or, as some might suggest, exactly where you might expect to see the horn of a six-foot-tall unicorn standing near a six-foot-high fence.
6. Rainbows.
7. Tapestries.
Putting this all together, we are forced to conclude that you may be keeping a unicorn in your back yard.
We do not want to look too closely at the circumstances which have allowed your family to acquire this magical creature, though we do want to warn you that this has created quite a lot of speculation, especially as a point of contrast to the lives of the Grahams. (Really, you should talk to Fred.) What you do --or, we can't help but think, don't do--in the privacy of your bedroom is of course entirely your business, unless you happen to head over to the Grahams on Tuesday night, in which case, it won't be.
Your yard, however, is a different matter. We are still checking the lengthy documents that govern the Oak Hills Homeowner Association (and deeply regretting allowing that attorney to charge us by the hour), but so far, we seem confident in stating that keeping a unicorn in your back yard violates numerous community rules, including, but not limited to, issues of proper lawn and maintenance care, noise, uniformity and consistency in line with maintaining property values, and of course, the prohibitions against keeping dangerous, large, or exotic animals. We admit that the proliferation of unicorn images suggests that your unicorn may not be all that exotic to many people, and the unicorn may not seem dangerous to you, but we do have the Grahams to think of. Also, if we can see the horn over the top of your six-foot fence--and we can--the animal is large. End of discussion.
Also, the presence of the unicorn in your back yard is making the rest of us feel a lot less pure and, frankly, kinda guilty about all the marathoning we're doing on Netflix. Not to mention our individual soft porn collections. And if we're feeling guilty, just imagine how the Grahams might be feeling, once Fred tells them about this. And you know he will.
We are therefore kindly requesting that you summon up some hunters, or a bevy of innocent maidens, whatever, to have this unicorn either artistically killed, or if you prefer, taken away to some unicorn sanctuary. Maybe one under the auspices of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. If not, we fear that we--and by we, we mean the entire neighborhood--will have to take matters into our own hands. And really--you don't want the Grahams involved in this at all. Ask Fred.
The End
This story was first published on Monday, April 24th, 2017

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