Prota 24
Prota 24

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Prota 24
The King's Note

The sun frothed the heavenly skies as clouds started to disappear over Mount Volos. Mother birds sung their morning hymns to comfort their sleeping children as they nested peacefully within their warm cots made of twigs and leaves. The beautiful melodies rang through the distilled air and seeped into the ears of Tomasi, who had fallen into a deep sleep after a long and treacherous sail from Lassi.

He had arrived the night prior to alert king Mazeonis of the horrific events that occurred in his newly built garden. The king had planned Volos to be the first stop on his year-long sail, and he stayed in the southeastern island of the archipelago of Volos—a circular island famously known for hosting a lush botanical garden which stretched for kilometers in diameter. The port of entrance nested neatly in a cove which bent around the northeastern part. It became a secret getaway for monarchs and upper classes who sought for privacy while also wanting to enjoy the splendors of Volos. They would dock their vessels for days and nights and partake in group walks and hunts through the wondrous gardens.

Tomasi found the exuberant king frolicking with others as they circled around a bonfire under the starry sky. A spit roast of deer hung from whatever flesh and bones remained while the rest was digested in their bellies. The cool waters calmly rippled on the shore while glistening from the moonlight and fire. The king was flabbergasted to see Tomasi but grew weary from his distraught facial expression. They went to Tomasi’s smaller vessel to chat inside the room where Tomasi safely stored the king’s chest of treasures.

After delivering the news, the king became devastated and turned pale. Words did not come out, only a waterfall of tears as he lamented the death of his children. After calming down, he thanked the exhausted Tomasi and told him they would reconcile in the morning and left, stumbling clumsily as his blood turned into wine.

Tomasi tucked himself into bed and fell asleep while listening to the outside noises of crackling fire, songs, laughter, and tears trickling down the cheeks of the sad king.

He awoke the following morning to the sounds of birds chirping. He lifted his body with a lioness yawn and stretched out his old limbs. As he looked down to his feet, he noticed a neatly folded parchment resting above the covers. Tomasi reached down and slowly unfolded it. He recognized the handwriting of king Mazeonis, and so, he read it.

A poor or wealthy life only exists through the eyes of the beholder; for who can determine wealth of others through eyes of their own? Golden shackles shine bright but weigh heavy, binding the wearer to the confines of their own lit rooms. Unbeknownst to me, a world outside glows and not from the shine of my gold.

My tears have dripped beneath my ankles to melt the shackles free but now I chafe from a lifetime of binding. Nevertheless, I am being replenished from this new light that I drink.

For a pint of light is worth more than a platter of gold. And even the smallest drops move the depths below.

Tomasi ran outside to find that the king and his vessel were gone. He was left alone with a massive inheritance of treasure, a small ship, and the handwritten note by the king, which suddenly felt heavy in his hands as he thought that he may never see his friend again.