Monday, July 6, 2009

Aesop's Fable (Re-written)

Beside the rocky shores of Greece, there stood an island of prosperity. The fields yielded bounty and the trade was rich and prosperous. Ruling over this place of abundance was a rather foolish king who was obsessed with gold. His name was Midas. Also in this wealthy kingdom resided a poor, yet compassionate camel boy, who surprisingly looked upon riches with disdain. He was obsessed with camels. Each day he drove his beloved beasts down to a sparkling stream and then rested while the camels grazed in emerald meadows.
It happened one morning, on the very morning that King Midas received his golden touch, that a ferocious lioness named Malicious, (but commonly known as Molly,) escaped from the palace menagerie because the beautiful sunshine had lulled her captors into a relaxing state of slumber. She paused outside the princess’ park in hopes of dining with the royal maiden (as the main course,) for, as Molly deduced, one with all her sweetness must surely taste delicious. The lioness’ move was well timed; the princess walked out of the palace accompanied by a gaudily clad female who was, unknown to the ravenous lioness, the princess’ cousin. Molly crouched into a clump of reeds, lying in wait for the princess to come close.
“Oh, Cyrene darling, how droll your little walk is! This sunshine sets off my new tunic just divinely, don’t you think?"
“Yes Bleeria,” Cyrene responded meekly.
“Did you chance to feast your eyes on these gorgeous earrings of mine? (Gasp) Just look at that little glade with the sunshine streaming through! Wouldn’t I look lovely standing right there in the center of it… just about where you’re standing?”
“I’m sure you would, Bleeria dear,” agreed Cyrene.
Molly, huddled in the bushes grinned a wicked, lion grin. She prepared to attack, making exactly to the center of the glade, slipping through the reeds noiselessly… almost.
“Cyrene! Someone’s coming! I can hear them walking through the reeds. Move! Move! Get out of the way, I must be seen in the best light!” gurgled Bleeria, and having shoved Cyrene out of the center of the lovely glade, closed her eyes, attempting to look peaceful and elegant.
Just then Molly sprang. It wasn’t quite as tasty as expected, Molly speculated. This was because Molly had mistakenly killed Bleeria, who was standing where her original target was positioned.
Gasping with horror but a little relieved, (glad to be rid of her obnoxious cousin,) the princess raced to her father to tell him the tale of woe.
“Oh Father!” she cried, and thrust herself into his arms. Immediately upon contact, the princess transformed from a living being into a golden statue which wore a terrible expression of horror from witnessing the spectacle in the park. Midas groaned. Unknown to most, the real reason of Midas’ grief was that expression. A nice golden statue would have been pleasant, but not one with a face twisted into a position like that. Moaning, he withdrew to his study. Back at the park, things were not progressing grandly for Molly. During her delightful snack, a sharp, gold earring had lodged itself in her thickly padded paw, causing her much anguish. The alarm had been raised about a loose lioness, and every aspiring adventurer was more or less on her trail. Molly skedaddled to the shelter of a forest. Once there, she found that she was horribly thirsty. Journeying for seven minutes led her to a crystal creek just big enough to be called a sparkling stream running through an emerald meadow. To her relief, our friend the camel boy lounged nearby. She slowly approached his sleeping form and growled softly in his ear. One look at Molly and he began to scream and recite the Greek alphabet. Finally calming down, he stopped somewhere around epsilon and realized the beast was in pain. As he was not called the compassionate camel boy for nothing, he found the source of her pain and performed the minor operation of pulling out the earring. Scarcely believing his good fortune, because that gold, jewel studded earring could buy all his camels put together, he raced home, shouting his good fortune all over the village. This commotion alerted five palace guards who were searching for the murderer of Bleeria. When they spotted the heavily ornamented earring and the camel boy, they put two and two together and arrested our camel loving friend as the murderer. Unfortunately, everyone at the palace came to the same conclusion, completely looking past the possibility that the missing lion could be the culprit, in other words claiming that two plus two equals 17. The Camel boy was sentenced to be eaten alive by lions that very afternoon. King Midas, attending the ceremony, was not in a good mood. He was hungry and thirsty, because he couldn’t eat anything before it turned to gold. He was tired, for the stiff, golden mattress offered him no comfort. Most of all, he was distressed about the problem of his statue/daughter. In the arena was the boy who had caused this problem; if he hadn’t killed Bleeria, his daughter wouldn’t of run to him in that manner. He could have had time to warn her.
Yes, Midas’ lips curled into a smile, I will enjoy this execution. The boy will not.
The camel boy trembled as he stood tied to the post.
Who could have known that assisting a lion would cause me all this trouble? he sniffed, On the other hand, who but me is dumb enough to help a lion?
Fear mounted within him while he stood. Opposite him, two gates swung open, releasing a furious lioness. Fear rose to hysteria, and he began to scream alphabetically in Greek, on through the letters, getting louder and louder.
Molly was exasperated. With fifty aspiring adventurers on her tail, it had not been long before she was recaptured. She had gone into the arena frustrated, but not hungry. From the ever approaching post there was coming an unpleasant, chanting scream that was strangely familiar.
How annoying, grumped Molly, It’s that dolt who pulled out that bothersome earring.
She briefly considered eating him, but grudgingly left him alone because he had helped her.
Besides, she reasoned, he smells like camels and will probably leave an aftertaste. Who wants to eat camels? Isn’t that why I escaped anyway?
The Camel boy stopped, finally, and opened his eyes. The lioness was staring at him, her nose wrinkled strangely. He laughed hysterically. Midas was astonished. What could he do with a boy whom lions wouldn’t strike? What could he do with a lioness who wouldn’t strike? Immediately he gave orders for the lioness to be returned to Africa. He needed time to decide the boy’s fate. He retired into his chambers for the night. There he was greeted by the little man who had bestowed upon him the golden touch. He begged his forgiveness and pleaded that the man would reverse the touch. This was granted to him. He embraced his now joyful daughter and she revealed to him the truth about her cousin’s death. The camel boy was allowed to keep the golden earring, so he was happy. Molly dined upon fresh antelope in Africa, so she was happy. The princess was a living being, so she was happy, and the king rejoiced because he had his beautiful daughter back. Because of the compassionate camel boy’s act of kindness towards the lioness, everyone was repaid in full, except maybe Bleeria.


Anonymous said...

How true! I did truly enjoy that storm. I came back drenched, but it was worth it!
Nice blog! :)

Emily said...

Wonderful story Ophelia! Very well written!

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed reading this! I love it when the camel boy starts reciting in Greek! :D

Anonymous said...

poor Bleeria.
oh, dear! don't miss understand me.
i don't mean "poor Bleeria" because she was eaten, but because she was made into the horrible character she was, and because she actually deserved the fate which befell her.
great story. :)
does the camel boy have a name? just wondering.

Annie C. Landon (Corissa T.) said...

::giggles:: That was....was....HILARIOUS!!!!!!