The bard plucked at his lute with a zen like focus, “We continue the tale from where we left off. Can any of you tell me what happened last?” Many of the children squealed and raised their tiny hands. “Oh! The Prince died!” “No that hasn’t happened yet, stupid!” “I know! The smelly Zed left Ruby for that other place.” “Python!” Holding up his worn hands the bard signaled for the children to calm down, “Correct! We last left the Prince Zed escaping from Ruby.”
“You see children, Ruby spans many a region in this grand world. Our largest cities reside in Debian and the Mountains Of Ubuntu. We’ve even some settlements on Windows Isle, but the great Stone Golems of Dot’net keep us at bay. Our fiercest warriors, the Iron Ruby Brigade, protect the settlers.” The bard pops a small cherry into his mouth, continuing with a trivia question “And where does the Royal Family reside?” Some of the children thought hard, others knew not at all, but one girl spoke up “The Apple Peninsula.”
The aged bard awarded the young girl with a small green bobble, “It’s a Gem my dear, all smart Rubyists have Gems for protection against the old Gods: Repetition, The Great Destroyer, and Frustration, The Mind Flayer.” The little girl looked absolutely in love, “It’s a Heroku Gem! I shall keep it safe forever, bard!” He smiled and strummed a tune on his lute.
“But what’s this? The Last Prince Of Ruby, The Lucky Prince Why, he who has written sacred and fine scrolls, has fallen ill! The palace suspects poison!” The bard stands, in a grandiose fashion, “Who of you has poisoned the Prince!” His bony finger shoots at a random child, “Was it you?!” The child’s face goes ghost white as he stands accused by the bard. The bard’s finger lingers not a second longer and falls upon the nose of another child, “Or you?!”
The child squeaks, much to the parent’s delight, and shakes his head! “Hmmm…I believe you, for it was discovered that the Prince was poisoning himself. He saw the lamentation of the people outside the Ruby lands. Those that were barbarians in the eyes of King David.” The bard looked out of the inn window, “He wished to bring them in from the cold into civilization, to partake in the wonders that he enjoyed.”
Some of the fathers grumbled, and the mothers tittered, at how close the bard came to heresy against the throne. Would he speak as he almost did last night? There was a fine tingle in the air. The bard seemed to not notice this as he continued his story, “Some of the people in Ruby felt his pain and felt his desire, they shared his ideals if not his will or conviction.”
A somber look overcame the bard, “King David would have none of it. Prince Zed’s words had been hard enough and he was not one to face criticism again. Many already spoke out against the lavish lifestyle he had, where beggars lined every street.”