Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Long Ago and Far Away

Many centuries ago, in the Kingdom of Mary-Land, a member of the Grand Council of Elders representing the kingdom’s Eighteenth Duchy passed away. The people were in mourning. But soon enough, the Lesser Council of Elders of the Barony of Montgomery met to select a replacement. After all, these decisions could not be made by the peasants, who were too uneducated, ill-fed and unwise to be trusted on matters such as these.

The Baroness of Montgomery, leader of the Lesser Council, convened the meeting at the council’s castle in the Principality of Kensington. After a long feast in the Royal Banquet Hall, the council proceeded to the Order of Business: selecting the next royal representative.

“Bring in the pretenders!” cried the Baroness to the page. Appearing before the royal court were Sir Kessler, Sir Cooper and the slightly wobbly Sir English.

“Sire, these gentlemen report to the council from the House of Blanc,” announced the page.

“The House of Blanc!” growled the Baroness. “But we have given them the last two seats on the Grand Council. They’re being a bit greedy, don’t you think?”

“But your highness,” protested Sir Kessler, “I have cleaned the Royal Stables for twenty years and if you select me, I will dredge the Royal Pond!”

“Silence!” yelled the Baroness. “We tolerate your possession of tongues so long as you use them only with permission. Guards, send them to the dungeon!”

Just then, the Royal Court heard a pounding at the doors. “Your majesty, I believe the peasants are trying to get in!” whispered the page.

The Baroness reached down on her plate and grabbed a crumb. “Here, give them a scrap of the Royal Meatloaf. That should hold them! Who’s next?”

“Your reverence, these are Sir Carr and Lady Pelles. They come to us from the House of Noir, which has not been awarded any seats in ages. Sir Carr has been attempting to install a sidewalk in the Principality of Kensington to protect the peasants on the street.”

“Interesting…” pondered the Baroness. “I have heard that many peasants have been run down by the wagons on Georgia Avenue. But this is none of our concern. We’ll just have to tell them to breed faster!”

“Very good, your highness. And Lady Pelles is also renowned throughout the land.”

“This is taking too long,” muttered the Baroness. “It is almost time for the Royal Back Massage and the Royal Bon Bon. Have them draw lots. Either of them will serve the interests of the empire well enough.”

BOOM! BOOM! “Sire!” screamed the page. “The peasants are about to break through the doors!”

“Oh rot!” sighed the Baroness. “Wheel out the Royal Telly into the courtyard and turn on America’s Top Model. That will placate them well enough!”

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