Saying No to a King

Almost everyone is nestled comfortably in their cedar rooms, because everyone who is anyone is building rooms out of cedar.

Their rooms are more comfortable than the king’s grave; a death that resembles how donkeys die, whose body is dragged out and through the city’s iron gates. The king rides a different sort of carriage now.

The king’s servants have taken to hiding his chariots and horses where they can never be found, because they’re the only ones who believe they’re fighting a war they can’t win. They feel like they’re the only pessimistic people left in the city, and if they weren’t so busy being gravediggers they’d have more time to feel depressed.

The king’s messenger returns, and he brings back a formal rejection of the king’s earnest request. Bad news, but the servants don’t run. They don’t run because they know their king isn’t brave, nor is he a coward – they know he’s the carefree sort of king. So they continue to hide his horses and chariots in rooms made of cedar, and wait for the building to burn to the ground.

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