The King’s Fool

The king sat on his throne in his opulent palace, gazing out over his vast lands and holdings. None but one knew exactly of what he contemplated, but some others thought they could guess.

Some of these others had presented him with the finest motor carriages in all the world—those had to be the finest, they reasoned, for they were built by the largest carriage builder in all the land. The king was grateful for their gift, but not satiated.

Still others had offered him thier monetary savings, the titles to their houses and their homes, and more had sworn fealty to the king, pledging to stand at his side in times of turmoil and unrest. A great number of these had stood amidst the public and openly praised the king for his compassion for his people and his concern for their health and safety. Surely there had never been, nay throughout all of history, such a kind and benevolent ruler of his people.

“The king is wise,” they told themselves and others. “The king is Solomon reincarnate!”

The king was pleased with their adulation and vowed to himself and ordered such to his court and his ministers that they should increase the comforts and provisions for his people; for those that recognized his heart and sang his praises. But still, the king’s contentment fell short of capacity.

But, there was one who knew how best to please his king. He alone knew the secret to pacifying the king’s hunger for goodness and largess.

Jackass, he was called, though not to his aged, grizzled face. And Liebetterthananyman, among some who had been party to his jokes, either butt, or co-conspirator. The court jester knew the king’s heart and his mind. This highest fool among fools, he alone knew what would satisfy his king and bring Utopia’s peace to the land.

“I can give you what you wish,” he whispered in his king’s ear. “I can give you the power over people’s thoughts, the ability to determine their dreams and to fashion the words that they speak, just as in the mythical lands of the East.”

“Are you such a genie as to have this power?” asked the king, hesitant to be made the butt of a joke, even in private, but drawn nevertheless, by the sweet, electrical seduction of the Fool’s words.

“Yes, my lord,” answered the jester. “But, what shall be my reward if I deliver on these, my words?”

“You are shrewd, Fool,” answered the king, the light of conspiracy shining in his eyes. “You shall have your choice of titles. Name your name, jester, and it shall be yours; recite for me your title, and I will grant it.”

“I like the name Safe. I shall henceforth be known as Safe, and my title shall be Secure, my king. And so, my Lord, we must simply convince the people that there is an inter-networked cadre of thieves and criminals waiting at the gate, sire. We must convince them that a fierce attack awaits from the hinterlands, and that we are not quite, but nearly so, powerless to prevent it. They will grant us this power of their own accord, and they will thank you for protecting them and they will feel safe, and thus, my name will rank second only to yours, sire, in the minds of the people.”

“Vastly shrewd, indeed,” said the king. “Make it so.”

The king smiled, again. This time it was a genuine smile of contentment; at long last he was satisfied, knowing that disillusion and discontent would be squelched for all time for his people and that they would for the remainder of their lives be under the protective blanket of Safe and Secure.

Inspiration from PrisonPlanet.