He threw the long end of his scarf over his shoulder, removed one leather glove, and with his bare hand turned the dial to one. The machine rattled. There was a pop and a hiss from a valve above. Behind a door smaller than his folded handkerchief a muffled whirring sound strained then clicked.
Presently a latch snapped open on its spring, and the door – hinged at the bottom – fell open from the top. Thin chains connecting the door to the machine trembled briefly as they snapped taut and kept the door from flapping completely open. White smoke billowed from the exposed compartment onto the makeshift platform, and out of the cloud emerged a limping, not-intolerably disheveled, blue-feathered wogbaughlin. It coughed several times, waving to disperse the exhaust. It looked up at him – still choking lightly – removed its top hat and held it by the brim with two tiny hands. It swallowed and said, “I’m sorry, sir. I’m afraid we’ve run out.”