Ragtag Daily Prompt: Halfway

The mayor of the capital sat at the far end of a long table in the guildhall of stonecutters. In his hand he held a brief communiqué from the prime minister. The message was brief. “Restore calm by any means necessary.” It was signed by the minister’s own hand, but bore the royal seal. The wax seal elevated the scrap of paper to the level of a royal edict.

While inside the guildhall, nobody spoke a word, outside the shouts of “GarGar! Pirouette!” were deafening. The demands of the populace were simple. They wanted the Crown Princess and le comte to marry and they wanted the prime minister to leave office immediately. Their mood promised to turn sour if they were forced to wait for any extended period of time.

“What are we to do?” whined one of the aldermen. “The mob is liable to tear us limb from limb if we don’t give them what they want.”

“The day we let criminal mobs run the country, is the day the entire kingdom sinks into oblivion,” replied another alderman.

“We will draw up a decree, in fact make several copies. One will be nailed on the door of the Great Cathedral. The others will be distributed around the city. It will say simply that the royal couple will wed this Sunday and that the prime minister has left the city.” The mayor looked around the table, waiting for a response. Silence prevailed. “Well, who wants to write it?”

“You do it!” Shouted the first alderman. “You seem to have all the answers. May I suggest we start ringing all the church bells in the city so that the people will know that an announcement is coming soon?”

“Good idea,” said the mayor. “If we can get the people to go back to business as usual, then we are halfway to resolving this crisis.”

The bronze doors to the guildhall had been barred shut with a large plank of wood. Suddenly there was an alarming surge in the volume of the shouts. Trumpets began to blare, and then, to the horror of the mayor and his aldermen, the wooden bolt snapped like a twig. The doors were flung open and in marched GarGar with hundreds of people at his back, holding his sword aloft, shouting, “Nobody is to be harmed! Treat these good men gently!”

Published by Russell Smith

I was born at the American Hospital in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France. I find inspiration in the lives of so many people from Joan of Arc to Oscar Wilde. While my primary avocation is photography, I also enjoy philosophy, theology and most of all, history. My beloved wife, Robin Anne Smith, who passed away in 2013 is an inspiration to me. My beloved partner, Dana is also a great support and inspiration to me. I'd be remiss if I did not mention my cats: Maxwell, Nigel, Pirouette and GarGar.

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