Monday, July 23, 2012

The King of One

"Take me to your leader." the creature pretending to be a man said, dressed immaculate in his three-piece suit and tie. William shook his head, "I am the leader." was the curt reply, regal and almost impatient. What an odd pair they were, one so immaculately dressed and another in ripped jeans, a tattered shirt and a bonnet from the gods knew where. "Lies. I've watched your world and I've seen your leader, but I require an introduction." was the man's reply. It had watched the people of the planet from afar and knew how they were dressed. In its warped mind, the tattered old man was the key to meeting the leader. It had run the numbers twice, thrice, to be sure. The cultural norms of this planet were odd in its head but the numbers did not lie. This man was the key to meeting the leader.

"I am the leader." The impatient reply as the man busied himself with warming his hands on the fire made from an old steel drum.

"You cannot be. The leader dresses regally. I have studied this world." No plan ever survived first contact with the enemy and it was proven to be true, once again, in this case. It had been planned, the harbinger would meet with the leader and discuss the terms of surrender. Creatures like itself would swoop down from the skies and enslave the people of this world. Destruction would follow, a destruction that it did not want. A destruction they did not want. No. Much like the people of this world, his people would prefer a benevolent sort of assimilation, to simply discuss the terms of surrender(which, really, were "surrender or die") but to do that, his code required him to have an introduction. After watching all seven billion of the planet's inhabitants, this man in all his degeneration, was the key to the introduction.

"I am the leader." The bearded man so dirty as he were once again re-affirmed and the creature started doubting itself. Had he made an error? Was he truly the leader? The way he had said it made it seem so, that he was the leader.

"Proof. I require it." the creature said, its facial features creasing in annoyance at the error. The seed of doubt planted, now unsure if such claims were true.

"I own the sky." the man said simply and looked up, the creature followed his gaze and frowned. "No one can own the sky." it replied and the man shook his head. "I do." again with such certainty! The audacity of the man made the creature frown. "Says who?" it asked, borrowing from the language of the youth, the youth that would one day grow old enough to be enslaved. "Says I." the man replied and looked back down, staring the creature in the face. Its blue fake-eyes returning the gaze. "But the others do not own the sky, and if anyone did, they do not allow it."

"What are they, but my subjects?" was the still-impatient retort and the creature then tilted its head. An all-too human show of confusion. "They cannot tell the leader what not to do." he waved the creature off and returned to the fire. "If you are truly the leader, then why are you dressed like this? Why do you live in this alley? Why here?" it did not make sense to the creature. The leader turned to him, a smile visible even from the bushy beard. "Because I can. Because they cannot stop me." he sneered petulantly at the creature.

The creature took a step back. It had never known fear, but even to those who did not know it, it existed. The creature scowled, "If you truly are the leader, then surrender or die." the terms brought forth, the man shook his head. "No." he replied and the creature smiled. "Do you not care for your people? Do you not care if we kill them?" it asked, its singsong voice now taunting the leader. "No." was the King's reply, and a soft chuckle for flourish. Turning to the creature, he shook his head. "What are they, but my subjects?" he asked, then walked away.

NOTE: This is a note posted recently by a friend. All credit goes to the original author, and I'm posting this here to promote redundancy. It would be a waste to see good material get buried and forgotten. I'm not sure why, but it resonates a seemingly Cthulhu-esque vibe, albeit the roles have become reversed. Original post can be found here.

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