The Sultan's New Armour

In the east, there was a land where the travellers were wayward; they built their shops here and there wherever they pleased and built wonky, bumpy roads that made no civic sense. They hid behind women, to them the sight of a withering lady breaking her back building roads or operating machinery to make clothes for the settled folks in the west was the epitome of empowerment. They had made a mockery of their religion, its vocabulary was now a word used in the same breath as an STD, a slogan or any vile socially retarding factor.

In this land The Fools ruled the roost. The Fools had an aptitude for enfooling the travellers in the land. They played upon the traveller’s difficulties, marketing them in other lands as poverty, all to collect a few chips. You see poker was their game of choice and there were only two players in the game that mattered all that much, The Grunts and The Ogres.

One day a new Sultan spoilt the plans of The Ogres and The Grunts and took the throne in a diplomatic coup, courtesy of the palace guards and some of the settled folks over in the west. Ironically this was much to the traveller’s relief, the travellers you see were a divided, confused and confusing bunch. He told them how he would treat their waywardness and set up a fairer poker game.

He huffed and he puffed and he blew a lot of houses down, but in his haste he fell prey to the grudges of some of the fools and his huffing brought ruin upon many of the travellers. The travellers had grown accustomed to paying tribute to the Head of the Ogres and the Head of the Grunts, The Sultan though to himself, “If I were to make these creatures disappear I wonder what would happen?” What happened was that a few interested poker players in the settled lands to the west ganged up on him.

Undeterred he next thought that he could set up an alternative party of fools and marketed this idea among the second rate Grunts and Ogres. This would, he imagined, test the loyalties of Gruntkind and Ogrekind and offer them a path to redemption.

The Sultan’s viziers were a motley crew, some had tried to be Grunts then Ogres but failed to win enough chips from the travellers to sit at the poker table. Some had spent their lives accumulating chips quite happily spending them converting travellers, while others had spent most of their lives trying to avoid enfoolment. Here they were playing cards without really understanding the rules of the game. It was a time of much learning and foolishness.

The Sultan’s guards were essentially what kept him on the throne. They weren’t too bright but did have some good intentions and administrative discipline. Here is an example of the kind of idea that would emanate from their minds.

As the travellers were wayward, they needed to be shown the straight path. A new uniform was suggested, so armouries and tailors across the land were ordered to make new garments. They set upon this task with glee, finding new inspiration in this empowering environment. Shoes and shirts of iron were made and a magnetised monorail designed to help the travellers to the straight path.

But it chaffed.

The chaffing was reminiscent of garments that the travellers’ fathers’ and grandfathers’ had worn before. However they could not quite remember as The Grunts and The Ogres had spend a lot of effort in erasing history and writing themselves up quite splendidly in its place. The weight and the poor articulation of the new armour made it difficult to move, both physically and mentally. Perhaps one blessing was that they could not move too far in a wayward direction, but for travellers in the habit of running people in circles for a living this was very annoying.

Both the rich and the poor travellers found that the chaffing led to bleeding and they weren’t sure that they had enough clotting agent in their system to grow any further. The rich occasionally protested at their own bleeding, pointing at the wounds of the poor to complete their intellectually self-satisfying indignation.

Some of the more playful travellers analysed the monorail and did not like its destination point, they found that there they would be like able to wander around and continue making a mess of things and benefiting from the confusion in between. The Elves had been driven quite paranoid by the passing of time and were now were content just to survive, they had nearly all died out, been driven out or humiliated by The Ogres and The Grunts. Never mind The Elves.

The guard’s game of choice was golf…

1 comment:

prple said...

I enjoyed that.

Does it come with a second part, with additions to the Ogres and the Grunts?