The verdant land of Kingdoms and Castles is vacant of civilization when I arrive. I have the peasants build a towering keep to my magnificence. They don’t yet have homes, or food to eat, but that can wait. A man can’t be expected to feast without a feast hall, after all. When the keep is done, I climb to the highest tower, and survey my kingdom. Nothing but trees, grass, and rocks for miles.

“They will bend the knee, or be destroyed” I tell my advisers.

“They’re just rocks sir, they can’t hear you” the impudent rodent replies.

“Or be destroyed” I say again, and vow that next time I have to repeat myself to him or his ilk, I will have them drowned in their own privies.

kingdoms and castlesDeath and Taxes

I realize that if I’m to complete my goal of becoming stupendously rich from crippling taxes, I’ll need some villagers to tax first. I have the filth lay down a few pitiful dirt roads and put up a few miserable hovels. There are five of them in total; a small number, but I trouble myself not with their names. Peasant names, like peasant speech, are rough on the ear, and leave a man with a strong thirst to wash them off the tongue. I have them build some farms, and expand our roads to a nearby quarry. I’d just as soon have them eat the rocks, but my advisers insist that they’ll work harder if they aren’t starved to death. Sniveling lowlifes.

kingdoms and castles

Here be Dragons

My advisers warn me of dragons out at sea. Noble beasts. I should have been born a dragon, instead of tending to these unwashed ignoramuses. Alas, I am but a man. A spectacular man of renowned fame and influence, but a man nonetheless. I have the halfwits expand our borders and erect defenses. If I cannot be a dragon, I can at least make a fetching codpiece from a dragon’s scales. The grubby muttonheads start to despair, so I have them build a few taverns and a church. The only true God is me, of course, and I am loathe to share their reverence with an impostor.

kingdoms and castles

In our 48th year, we are invaded by Vikings from some barbarian land. They bring with them another dragon, and a troll. My feculant, bird-brained underlings attempt to put out the fires, but the vikings set fire to the village well. The troll tears its way through our meager defenses. As it crushes the useless peasants underfoot, I can’t help but smile. It is my first smile in thirty years. One man sees it, so I have him killed. Brutally.

kingdoms and castles

Winter is Here

My kingdom lies in ruins, so I decide to leave these wastrels to their fate. I build a ship, and sail out to sea. I doubt they’ll survive the winter, but that is no longer my concern. Valar Morghulis, dickheads.

kingdoms and castles

You can find the excellent Kingdoms and Castles here.

About the Author

Nic Reuben

Nic Reuben likes to pause games every five minutes to ponder the thematic implications of explosive barrel placement. When he's not having an existential crisis over CAPTCHA verifications that ask him to prove he's not a robot, he's reading sci-fi and fantasy short stories, watching cartoons, and mourning the writing standards in Game of Thrones.

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