Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Mongrel and the Vulture

Long ago, and far away, there lived an unadorned King. Though not a tyrant by any means, he still administered prevalently over a modest realm. In his castle also lived a somber Princess, who for years had been locked away in a tower in a faraway land. She was the apple of the King's eye, and he found much favor in her. So much so, that dominion over the kingdom was entrusted to her completely. She adorned the King and their castle, and lavished their treasury with gold. For years, they ruled mutually, and harmoniously. But like all good things, life in the kingdom, and especially the castle had become routinely commonplace. The somber Princess had grown listless; and had taken to once more locking herself away in a tower, on a far side of the castle. As it turns out, the Princess was actually an evil Ice Sorceress; and only through her magic dark crystals could her true hideousness be seen. What the King never knew, was the day that he rescued her long ago; she had immediately placed him under her dark spell. But the King, still deep within the spell, knew not the extent of the darkness which had enfolded him. One day, while staring out of her tower, the Princess gazed upon a lowly mongrel foraging outside the gates of the Kingdom. She found herself spellbound by the mongrel, and brought it into the castle to remain near her. The King however could not quite understand how it is the Princess would bring such a lowly mongrel into their kingdom; and found himself at odds with it. Instantaneously, the mongrel began to appear at the King's feet, at his table; waiting for even the faintest of scraps to fall to the floor. Though this annoyed the King, he considered the mongrel nothing more than a lowly pest; worth nothing more than a simple shooing away of. The Princess however soon began feeding the mongrel directly from the King's table; and to the utter amazement of the King, it was not long until the mongrel sat aside the Princess, and began eating directly from her hand. This infuriated the King, who would have no more of this; and spoke harshly to the Princess as to his disdain of the lowly mongrel tainting his table. This in turn infuriated the Princess, who in turn had materialized as the evil Ice Sorceress. Already under her spell, the King fell even further under it, and was transformed into a hideous vulture. But what the Sorceress did not know, was that she too had been placed under an evil spell; for immediately the mongrel had transformed himself into a sinister Dark Wizard. But the semi-circle of spells was now complete. The King, now a vulture, still beheld the beauty of his Princess; rather than the hideousness that was the Sorceress. The Sorceress, instead of beholding a careworn Wizard, instead was entranced by the image of a dark and handsome Knight. The Wizard, now acting as King, and in control of the castle, gained control and influence over the royal treasury; and was thus adorned in a fashion befitting a king. But he grew wary of the vulture, for it remained perched firmly on the shoulder of the Sorceress. The Wizard commanded the Sorceress to place the hapless vulture into a cage; whereupon she began feeding him carrion and scraps. Still ill at ease, the Wizard asked the Sorceress why it was she still felt the need to keep the vulture near. Under his dark spell, the Sorceress denied any desire to keep the vulture as a companion; and instead spoke ill of the hideous bird. "See how he waits in his cage for your scraps! We have no use for this vulture! You are the king, and it is you I serve!" She then took the vulture in his cage, and quickly threw him onto a mountainous garbage heap, far outside the walls of the kingdom. Upon her return, the Wizard seized upon the Sorceress, and immediately threw her into the deepest and darkest dungeon in the castle. The Sorceress tried in vain to transform back into the Princess; but it was too late; the Wizard's spell was much too strong; and shackles had been placed upon her for good. Her magic had lapsed. The vulture however, found that upon impact, the carelessly discarded cage had cracked. It took a while, but after pecking and pecking at the cracks within the cage door, it finally gave way; and the vulture stepped outside to find that he had become a falcon. He no longer had to settle for the prospect of carrion and scraps; and the skies above, and the horizon beyond, were now his kingdom.

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