Disclaimer, this started off as an inspired piece in the dead of night…inspiration ran dry at some point…hope it makes sense. Enjoy
The young king stands at the threshold of the balcony almost afraid to step out onto it, his gaze lost into the horizon when the golden sun lazily glows to greet the day. The landscape is awash with the glow. All is still, all is calm, all but the mock of the birds, that as they soar tends to ask ‘ what took you so long you lazy king, we have been at work from dusk’. The young king breaks a slight smile from the stupid though of mocking birds. The smile does nothing the melt the frown, he wants to believe its from the glare from the sun but he is prudent enough to know that the frown is from the issues that weigh on his mind. The weight of his worries is beyond his age and his wisdom, he argues. He then is reminded of kings that had conquered the known world while still well below his age. He reminds himself, as if talking in third person, of the legend of Napoleon, his conquests, and how his only worry was that there was no more land left to conquer. The young king’s heart sinks, he can now feel the weight of his robe anchoring him where he stood. As if in submission, his shoulders drop. He exhales into the cold air and the mist that results reminds him only of his clouded mind. I should not be king. His father had left the kingdom to him at this tender age, he, in the time he was prince, never saw this coming so soon. He never learnt, he never cared to. He had only known how to solve things as they came to him, this of course was easy for him as he had resources at his disposal and people to clean after his messes and a king to cover up for it all. Now he was king. He let out another laboured breath, mist. Now his gaze had been worn down by his thoughts, it hurt him to gaze at the kingdom he felt he did not deserve. He stared at the floor of the balcony before him, such craftsmanship. The masons knew what they were doing. He did not.
His lungs were heavy in his chest and his body felt weak. There was some movement behind him but he did not bother to look.
“what weighs on your mind, my king.” Her voice was soft and her words smooth as the scarlet silk sheets that barely covered her naked body.
With shoulders still dropped he turns his head to gaze upon his favourite part of the kingdom, daughter of the northern kingdom and his queen. The sun kissed her thigh and it looked golden, and her hair reminded him of a Greek tale about a golden fleece, he would have sworn she sparkled in the morning sun. His breathing became easy and his shoulders were raised. He smiled and turned towards her.
“Good morning my queen, I only stand here to look down on my kingdom” he says
“Your were barely on the balcony, why do you hide from it, you are king.”
She is very insightful, he thought.
‘I love that I can be weak around you.”
She replied, “its hurts me so that you find it easy to be less the man you are around me.”
“My lady, I am king only by blood and the kingdom out there deserves more than an idiot to entrust their lives to”
“My Lord,” she was now standing in front of him, holding the scarlet sheet wrapped around her at the chest, he loved that she could distracting so much that he never noticed her moving up to him. She continued “..this kingdom has never had a more befitting King. It should be so lucky.”
“Darius would make a better king”
“My Lord, Darius is a fine soldier but a hot head, your best friend but no king. He lacks in diplomacy and his decisions are rush”
“but he gets things done and…”
“and he would kill a man to make a meal, where was Darius when you signed a truce with my father, the two kingdoms are better off economically for the decision you made”
“but he is brave.”
“brave is riding unarmed into the enemy’s territory and ending a 10 year war and marrying his daughter, who fell in love with you when you first walked into the kings court.”
“My lady, you only see me as the man I want to be”
“I see you as the man you are, the man who you are afraid you are, for you while you may make up for your mistakes to the world with your charm, you wouldn’t know how to live with yourself if you disappointed yourself.”
She continues, “you are my king, and king of all the land that you see, you say it yourself that you can be weak around me. I want you to change that, be the man that you are and when you feel weak, then you always have me to hold you, for when I said in strength and in weakness I meant it. For in abundance of laughter and a river or tears, for better for worse, I do, I do love you and always will.”
The young king had at that point the cloud lifted. He was ready to face the world.