The envy of all, the view of perfection, the embodiment of extravagance, these are the expectations of blue blood. Though such wondrous blessings may be lucky to some, it is the burden whipped upon my back.
Father sat on his throne contently today, he stroked his beard merrily with a bubbly gleam in his eye, looking at the tables and chairs being set into place. The banquet hall had been a swarm today, with people in and out for the grand soirée this evening. Cleaners scrubbing the windows till light flooded the room, weavers mending the great tapestries that would be hung onto the walls, and servants bustling through the chaos. I watched the chaos fester and grow as people yelled orders to God-knows-who, I saw the people slip and trip onto the newly waxed floor, I witnessed my father adoring this mess of people —for he saw only the good for him.
“My dear boy, have you picked out what you are going to wear for the party tonight?” Father asked, his mind still in the fantasies of dancing and laughter.
“No sir,” I answer flatly. Father looks at me, wondering why I didn’t put my priorities into the merriment of festivities. He may be a King but sometimes he has the mind of a child.
“Well then,” he sighs,”best get ready.”
He got up and left me to my thoughts. I watched him as he left; his back is arched more than I remember and his pace is more timid and reserved. I wonder if age has also taken grasp of my father?
The party was just how I thought it would be. People laughing like loons with glasses in their hands. Lords stuffing their fat faces with food as Ladies eye one another with silent jealousy. Everyone dancing like fools, everyone eating like fools, everyone speaking like fools —fools, fools, fools. And my father was in the middle of it all.
Hours past with ear-rattling music and pathetic stories, then my father historically got onto the table. All fell silent as they watched their king stand awkwardly upon the table, their smirks silently mocking, their eyes lampooning, their ears ready for listening to his ridiculous tale.
“Ladies and gentlemen,” he spoke with a rather serious tone,”I have a challenge for you all tonight.”
The crowd started giggling.
“This is not a joke, for the winner of this challenge will receive his weight in gold.”
A moment struck with shear awe. Then the men started rushing to the buffet table and gouged their faces with any food they could get their hands on, others rushed to my father with sharp ears ready for his demand, not one thinking they would be taking money from my family. The selfish souls, the greedy pigs, I was fed up with it. I stormed out of the room, heading straight to the door —then.
The doors blasted open, the cold night air welcoming itself in. I started shivering but stopped when I saw it.
Ten cows, yes cows, all milky white and healthy. Each had deep brown eyes with long lashes strewed across, their legs strong yet gentle with a well fed tummy placed on top. I knew these animals very well for they belonged to my mother, who seemed flabbergasted at the sight of her animals.
“Richard! What is the meaning of this!” she demanded, glaring at my father with such force.
But the others laughed, some went up to even touch the cows. My father gave a big loud chuckle as his guest stroked the white cows.
“Your challenge is to guess the weight of every cow. He, or she, who does this task will be given their weight in gold!” Father yelled.
Soon, people flocked to the animals. Some tried measuring their width with scarves, some lifted the cows (but failed miserably), some put dirt into their pants to make sure they had a big weight.
How ridiculous, how greedy, how unimportant, I can’t believe these people are our monarchy, our rulers, our leaders. I left the party, and my father, and the thieves that call themselves our friends, I left everything.