The Pretender King – M. Payne

Image result for king with army

During the entire journey to the castle, the rightful king’s army sang songs of his legend. He stood at the gate, his 20,000 men at his back, and demanded to “speak with the pretender king.”

The newly crowned king, an infamously cruel warrior, lowered the gate to meet him,  flanked by his guard.

“I am the rightful king,” the rightful king said, pointing to a wagon filled with scrolls. “These records prove as much. Abdicate or we will lay siege to the castle, bribe your allies against you, kill your men, rape your women, and enslave your children.”

The newly crowned king and his men examined the records, consulted, and, after a time, acquiesced. “I hereby abdicate the throne to the rightful king. I will arrange for all of his soldiers to be fed, drunk, and laid, and we will prepare a coronation worthy of his majesty.”

And everyone rejoiced, singing songs of the rightful king’s legend, even a new one about conquering the pretender. His soldiers were fed, drunk, and laid. The rightful king himself was led to the throne room where he knelt, imagining the crown placed upon his head.

The abdicated king’s men poured him one made of molten gold.

The rightful king, now the famous Pretender King, stayed in the throne room for generations, skull wreathed in gold, glaring at all who entered, presiding over the kingdom. He got everything he had desired.


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