Qayid Aljaysh Juyub
The Witch Finding
"Beg for mercy, beg for forgiveness!"
Carolus Luidbeek looked at the maltreated and cruelly bound woman on the pyre with derisive satisfaction.
"Have mercy my Lord, I deeply regret my sorcerous work. By the love of God, great inquisitor, have mercy."
The pleading voice of the broken woman sounded sweet in the witch hunter's ears and made his narrow chest swell with pride. After all, during the hours of intense torture, he had made his unfortunate victim make a final confession at the stake, so to speak.
Satisfied, the inquisitor nodded to his hulking assistant, who handed him the burning torch.
"You have forfeited any right to mercy, witch. Behold now the terrible power of Holy Mother Church!"
"You rotten bastard, you promised to go easy on me if I lied..."
With an almost sexual feeling of happiness, Luidbeek lit the pyre amidst the enthusiastic howls of the bloodthirsty mob. In the blazing fire, the delinquent's curses turned into shrieking screams to the delight of the spectators.
"Thus says the Lord: I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in me, and in whom I abide, bears abundant fruit; for apart from me you can accomplish nothing. He who does not abide in me, like the branch, is thrown away, and he withers. You gather the branches, throw them into the fire, and they burn.
This is what happened to those wicked witches, because the woman is weak in her devilish desires and loves the serpent. Also the diabolic deniers and heretics, who doubted the only valid truth of the church and the authorities, have been handed over to the purifying fire. Praise the Lord, for he is relentless against all those who think laterally, for they are of the devil!
But behold, the Luidbeek, as a good servant of God, has worked in the vine of the Lord and has freed it from the rottenness of evil; may this now bring him abundant fruit. Mayor Onderworpen now give the Luidbeek his deserved reward, for his blessed deeds are pleasing in the eyes of the Almighty!"
The splendidly robed archpriest Josephus von Klootzak nodded patronizingly to the magistrate, who was dressed in shabby, bourgeois gray. The latter, with a stony face, now pushed an obviously well-filled purse in the direction of the witch hunter.
The three were the only ones in the town hall of the small town, sitting at a plain oak table. Normally, some dignitaries would have taken part in the farewell of the pyromaniac servant of God, but the influential archpriest liked small rounds, especially since the number of witnesses to be eliminated in case of unfortunate developments in the conversation was limited.
"No, that's really not necessary, as a faithful servant of Holy Mother Church and our Prince Bishop, I don't need any reward to do God's work!"
Smiling slimily, the fire-powered Carolus made a dismissive gesture, but did not push back the bulging money bag. Meanwhile, the mayor grimaced in disgust, knowing this game all too well, while the fancy archpriest's expression took on an arrogant knowing look.
"Now, now, dear Luidbeek, you have truly earned your reward with your inquisitorial piety. For blessed are those who do rectal service to the state, for the eyes of the Almighty rest upon them with pleasure. So now take your well-deserved reward, which is written there and adds up to every servant of the devil on the holy list!"
In addition, the reader should know that the mentioned document was a death list, which was regularly handed out to the employed witch hunters by the prince-bishop's chancellery. For each delinquent listed on it there was a kind of bounty. As a kind of additional income, blood money was also paid for convicted witches from the lower classes, who were named locally by the local clergy to the inquisitor or to some sycophant.
"The venerable father may forgive me, but I still missing the payment for the devil's whore, whom your archpriesthood has named most personally and whom we have consigned to the purifying fire today in a particularly beautiful event!"
The priest looked at the apologetically slimy smiling Luidbeek with a furrowed brow, only to nod graciously at him. The 'devil's servant', whose brutal execution we were allowed to witness at the beginning of this story, had a specific meaning. Unfortunately for her, she had an attractive six-year-old son who pleased the boy-loving archpriest. The widow vehemently refused to hand over her child to the pastor's pedophilic desires, so the archpriestly pederast decided to get rid of this problem with the help of the witch hunter.
"Well then, let the good servant of God receive his truly deserved reward. Mayor Onderworpen shall receive the sacred honor of paying Luidbeek 30 silver thalers from his purse!"
"If the venerable father would consider that my beneficial activity also saved him the cost of an executioner, since I brought the delinquents to their eternal salvation by my own hand. Surely that is worth at least another 30 pieces of silver!"
"Alright, may the Onderworpen pay for that too!"
Meanwhile, the magistrate's facial expressions betrayed an interesting mix of outrage, resignation, and a feeling of needing to vomit profusely.
"Reverend Archpriest, at your service. The witch hunter may collect his executioner's wages here in the town hall tomorrow."
Mindful of his predecessor, who refused to oblige the archpriest in a similar situation and ended up on the list, the mayor gave his consent to the dirty deal in a pressed voice.
With an acted reluctant gesture, the enterprising Luidbeek formally snatched the money bag, rose and submissively took his leave, while the pedophile archpope blessed the greedy murderer.
High above the capital Gelsum - also called the 'City of a Thousand Fires' thanks to various inquisitorial episcopal efforts - the magnificent palace of the prince-bishop literally towered and cast its bloody shadow of terror on the cruelly enslaved inhabitants.
The 'small audience hall' with the extension of about two soccer fields represented a special treasure within the prince-bishop's residence. In the center of the room, richly decorated with precious stones and amber, there was a simple golden throne on which Prince-Bishop Adolphus of Macadabrense used to place his body mass. Apart from the weighty chief shepherd, who liked to shear or slaughter his flock, there was also his chancellor, Vicentius von Scholzomat, as well as witch hunter Luidbeek together with his assistant, a coarsely debonair giant of selected ugliness, named Heinrichs. As an unusual element of femininity in the midst of so much masculism, Persephone von Thobary did the honors, who, as the favorite of the prince-bishop, had only recently been elevated to the peerage directly from the whorehouse because of various sadomasochistic love services.
In view of the recent successes that filled the prince-bishop's coffers - it should perhaps be mentioned here that 75% of the assets of the chosen victims of the cremation went to the state in the person of Macadabrense - the spiritual ruler condescended to receive the pyromaniac expert in the fight against witches together with his assistant in a small circle. Of course, well protected by a considerable number of quick-witted palace guards - affectionately called the 'blue cops' because of the color of their uniforms - and an ever-ready executioner in a fashionable Reaper outfit with a funny shiny execution scythe.
While the Scholzomat on the left made himself uncomfortable in his stiff manner on an iron throne at the feet of the prince-bishop's seating furniture, the Macadabrese's new-aristocratic love servant lolling lasciviously in her appealingly charm-accentuating garb, which could give even an eunuch strange ideas, was on the right of her master on a velvet splendor chair. On their knees with bowed heads, as befitted favored henchmen of the ruling class, the scruple-free Luidbeek and his dim-witted assistant persevered to listen to the heavenly pious words of their clerical employer - just in case, the Reaper was within easy scything range behind the two well-behaved subjects. However, before our episcopal father of the country, so fond of transporting the souls of his subjects on to a presumably better world, could deign to parley with his faithful servants, Persephone unwillingly intervened indignantly.
"By holy Cretinicus, this creature is ugly! Adolphus, my creamy one, can you not relieve me of this sight?"
With a disgusted expression on her beautiful, Madonna-like face, Macadabrese's mistress nodded toward Heinrichs, who was gazing dully at the floor.
"You women are so sensitive. But he's really not a beauty, my little golden angel. Guards, to the dungeon with the guy!"
Before the not exactly with wisdom blessed, prince-bishop's truncheon guard in their blue uniforms overcame her disorientation, since one did not know so exactly, who is now to be incarcerated, now again unwillingly the golden angel of death intervened.
"But Adolphus, thou gracious ornament of absurdist princeliness, dost thou not think that the world should be rid of such a ghastly being? Besides, you still lack impressions for your ballad 'the end of the Baptist'."
Extremely pleased, the episcopal ruler smiled at his favorite. The efforts as a poet represented a special passion of the princely cleric, who liked to ask his surroundings for an 'honest' judgment regarding his works. Since some people misunderstood the aristocratic request, some cruel executions took place in the past. Because remember, in Absurdistan, as the ruling unartistic creator often jovially expressed himself, freedom of opinion prevailed, but every subject had to live with the consequences of his expression of opinion or simply die.
In a flash, the Grim Reaper, who unlike the dull blue-uniformed men had some intelligence, reacted routinely and amputated Heinrich's chunky skull with one blow. While the assistant's head fell to the ground and the rolled to the Thobary's perfectly formed feet, a rather small fountain of blood shot from the neck stump - presumably Heinrichs' rather poor mental faculties were due to a lack of blood flow to the upper extremity - and did no harm in soiling the floor and clothing of those present. Laughing pearly in childish joy, the golden angel clapped her hands, then gracefully picked up the delinquent's head and presented it to her episcopal patron with a graceful gesture.
"O Herod, here now I show you the head of the simple believing preacher in the wilderness!"
Pleased that his favorite quoted from the current work, the art-loving prince-bishop continued.
"Salome, thou joyful slut, as a gift shalt thou receive the head of St. Baptist, and shalt manage the fruit of my loins."
The crowd erupted in cheers, and even the otherwise emotionless chancellor grimaced with slimy admiration. Not insignificantly to such unjustified enthusiasm storms contributed of course the fact that the Reaper of the princely chief pastor had strict order to decimate with his scythe indiscriminately the common present ones with lack of verve of the public - even the 'blue bulls' spared from any intelligence understood this after some head cuts.
With a imperious gesture, the cultured prince-bishop commanded immediate silence while the Grim Reaper disappointedly stroked his amputation device.
Meanwhile, Luidbeck, kneeling in fearful awe, suffered many a sweaty panic attack, which the subsequent words of his master did not exactly abate.
"Now to you Luidbeck! In my inconceivable grace I wanted to give you the privilege to kiss my feet for your excellent services. And how do you reward me for my kindness and love? Bringing this hideous creature into this holy hall and insulting the eyes of my pure angel! But does not the Lord command us to forgive even the vilest sinner?"
With a questioning expression, Macadabrense turned to his dearest associate.
"Tell me, what kind of man am I?"
In a muffled sepulchral voice, the Grim Reaper gave his standard reply.
"A merciful man!"
"Therefore, I will show Christian charity to Luidbeek and pardon him to a thousand lashes!"
Thunderous applause - you know, the man with the scythe was always ready - shook the room. But the ovation had hardly died down when the pure golden angel intervened, carelessly tossing aside the head of the pseudo-Baptist.
"But, my little cuddly bear, the linnet is going to give out too soon. In order to test how many lashes a person can endure, we should rather use a strong farmer. Let's use this bloody underdog to chastise some more heretics. Besides, I still have plans for him!"
While the Episcopalian beacon of Christian charity nodded approvingly and the surroundings fell silent in horror, the Scholzomat could not refrain from a sardonic snicker. The Thobary's 'plans' were as notorious as they were perverse. Her masterstroke was to persuade the prince-bishop to lure a minority from other states, tormented by the Christians, by the promise of a decent life, and then, on a whim, to incite her pious lover to have them all murdered. The vernacular then also spoke about this Original Christian event of the 'great burning of the Jews'.
"I can't refuse my sugar snail anything! You have more luck than mind witch hunter. Now at least show your respect by licking the heels of your benefactor's high heels!"
"Oh Domina, be thanked for your warm-hearted kindness for me subservient worm!"
With such slimily reverent words, Luidbeek crawled snake-like - in both mental and physical uniformity, so to speak - toward the lower extremities of the favorite of the gracious prince, cleaning the longed-for target with fetish-conditioned enthusiasm, while Macadabrense slapped his fat thighs with amusement. Even the chancellor, suffering from facial paralysis, twisted the corners of his mouth in amusement.
The subject of the unusual, shoeshine effort cast a bored glance at the reptilian inquisitor and, having enjoyed herself, now decided to get down to work.
"I should have made a round through the pigsty, so that this narrow gelding could gout once properly pig excrement. But enough, slave! On your place and try to make man!"
Gratefully, the gourmet crawled back to his original position and assumed the usual kneeling posture.
"Adolphus, my absurdistalian stallion, we should get on with business after all!"
"My golden pussycat, you are so caring. So now the Scholzomat, the old scoundrel, may read aloud the current list of heretics and witches who have fallen to the flaming sword of divine justice! Do not forget to tell me how exactly the devilish brood received their punishment!"
The interested reader should know that the princely shepherd of souls took great pleasure in recapitulating the names of his victims and imagining their torment in his sick brain. Now, as for the chancellor, the Christian ruler did not dub him a 'scoundrel' for nothing, since the Scholzomat was extremely versed in white-collar criminal knowledge and of great use to the profligate government. Even the mad prince-bishop appreciated this and did not habitually let his corrupt financial genius, who knew so well how to get the last out of his squeezed subjects, go over razors edge.
Thus, in a toneless voice, the chancellor made white-collar criminal began to read the names of the unfortunates and the manner of their demise from the Episcopal Book of the Dead.
"(...) Gerald of Riva together with his wife, wheeled and quartered for devilishly insubordinate looks."
"Stop, you old bandit! That's not the way to do it!"
With her voice dripping with eroticism, Persephone interrupted the iron chancellor's lecture. With a charming smile full of wet promises, she turned to her patron.
"Doesn't this Riva guy still have hereditary preschool-age children?"
Delighted, Macadabrense grinned at his attentive mistress.
"So, Scholzomat, what about the brats?"
"Your Gracious Serene Highness, the children are with the 'Unforgiving Sisters' in the convent of Campus Concentrationus for the purpose of Christian education and timely disposal ."
"Fiddle-dee-dee, without a doubt these are diabolical changelings and belong immediately on the funeral pyre. Persephone my angel, for this you have earned a gem of your choice from the legacy of this devilishly rich Rivas!"
Nodding eagerly, the chancellor made a corresponding note regarding child welfare in the Book of the Dead with his ever-ready silver stylus.
"Now may my faithful financial Figaro proceed with the sacred text, but with 'Cum Ex'!"
After a good half hour, the listening pleasure ended, to the disappointment of the sovereign and the relief of most of those present.
"Well, Scholzomat, my little golden ass! Now for you, witch hunter, while you're here: why is the list so short and why aren't the devil's children punished more severely? Shouldn't the magical ones be skinned before they are burned alive?"
Macadabrense looked at his henchman with a fatherly stern face. The witch hunter's sweat flowing in streams and his body unable to suppress an uncontrolled tremor. Admittedly, the thought of the possible disciplinary measures of the crazy head bishop would have panicked even a brave man of strong character.
But before our beleaguered state security specialist with a focus on witchcraft could react, Luidbeek got help from an even unexpected side.
"But Dolphie, this wretched figure is really trying and is of all the incompetent inquisitors still the one with the highest catch rate of deniers, heretics and witches. Besides, the wretch has already rendered excellent services as a lobbyist for our anti-witch vaccine-19 and with regard to the general compulsory vaccination with our miracle elixir. Speaking of vaccinations, my pussycat, there is actually a small town called New-Salem, which according to recalculations of the local priest has only a vaccination rate of 90%! Without doubt satanic heretical thought criminality is at work there, which should be exterminated! Because of this tyranny of the unvaccinated, now all inhabitants of this hell-pool should be once again compulsorily vaccinated with costs. I think perhaps Luidbeek should be given another chance. Our inquisitor of the sad shape will surely light many a bonfire with his own fanaticism and fill the prince-bishop's coffers properly!"
Affectionately Macadabrense looked at the clever mistress whose Christian virtues were so much like his own.
"How can I contradict my beloved cherub? But Scholzomat, you old canaille, tell me, why was I not informed about the plague bump in my unchristian kingdom of heaven?"
"O anointed Caesar, I did not want to trouble you with such unsavory matters. The radiantly sensitive artistic soul of Your Glory should not suffer from such filthy trivialities of ungrateful subjects. I have already drafted an order to unleash the local chapter of the Teutonic Order, under bloody John, their even pious order captain, on the vaccination refusers!"
Despite the dark threat, the cunning chancellor recited the just-invented tale in his usual emotionless voice, while the Reaper listened with interest.
But before the heads flew again, as the Druid of Tingeltangel loves it, the wise Persephone intervened, who appreciated the Scholzomat's exploitative maneuvers.
"Addy, don't burden yourself with such trifles. The old bandit is just sometimes as demented as the leader of the West, his holy senility, in Rome. But in his incapable autistic way he only meant well. Although, to let the crazy John and his stinking gang raze the place to the ground, I don't think is very profitable. After all, this lousy band of knights keeps plundered riches for themselves and is difficult to get rid of. Why don't you send the nasty Luidbeek and, as support, the commander Dumbo el Stalkero with his lansquenets? Come to think of it, I could come along and instruct the gentlemen in the proper way to deal with the wretched traitors, while my cuddly bear could concentrate fully on writing the new song about the fall of Troy!"
With an amorous, dreamy expression on his face, the prince-bishop nodded in agreement.
"Scholzomat, you gold piece made human, write the corresponding order. So it is now written, so it shall be. He, the Luidbeek, the slimy something, now crawl out of the audience hall and hold himself ready for holy work."
On the Rose Hill, in the middle of the small town of Neu-Salem, was the slightly run-down castle 'Horst'. The Thobary and her entourage now resided there, after the mistress had ridden in on a noble Arabian stallion, followed by the witch hunter and the commander Dumbo at the head of a dilapidated band of mercenaries, to the cheers of the population.
Well, friends, it is quite astonishing that the downtrodden population also greeted their oppressors with unfeigned enthusiasm, but the dumbest calves not only choose their butcher, but also cheer him. Besides, there was probably no people in the world more obedient to authority than the Absurdistanis, blessed with extraordinary naiveté, who were happy to lie at the feet of the powerful and all the more happy to go for the throat of the weak.
Thus Persephone, dressed in flowing red robes, immediately rode down an old beggar under the unfeigned enthusiasm of the mob with the comment 'Your poverty disgusts me'! The blind old man committed the unforgivable crime of accidentally standing a few meters in front of his fellow citizens who lined the street waving their black-white-red flags.
Contrary to expectations, the terror was limited in the following period, although Luidbeek was eager to prove himself and to slaughter the female inhabitants under cruel tortures. His mistress, however, pursued other plans and was content to have the city council summarily executed by the borderline-debilitarian Dumbo himself, who was reprimanded for being unforgivably lazy, since the dull militarist failed to decapitate the twelve magistrates within 30 seconds. Also, the Thobary refrained from having the entire city population chastised, but let her slavishly devoted witch hunter rage 'only' among the uninoculated, to the delight of the dull majority society. Thus many a bonfire burned for the pleasure of the vaccinated mob, but there were no serious population reductions, especially since it turned out that the number of vaccinated people in reality was about 95% and the incompetent office of the Scholzomat had once again miscalculated.
Well, friends, now the question may arise with one or the other, what it had actually with the dubious anti-witch vaccine-19 and the 'vaccination' on itself? A similarity with modern experimental gene therapies and the resulting human experiments was only given insofar as it was also a well-functioning enrichment scheme of an inhumanly corrupt elite. Otherwise the 'vaccine', which was simply water from the Köttelflitsche -the river crossing Gelsum-, was taken orally and was supposed to prevent possible infections with the 'witch virus' discovered by the prince-bishop inquisition on the highest command. The special, imagined effect of the miracle remedy came about through the 'remote blessing' of the prince-bishop. However, the holy swill could not be considered entirely free of side effects - according to the official inquisitorial account, there were of course no side effects! - because our miracle vaccine was contaminated by all kinds of waste water from Gelsum. Thus some vaccinated person died strangely after administration of the stinking broth or suffered all kinds of health damages. Such collateral damage did not prevent Macadabrense, of course, with the active assistance of the Scholzomat, from introducing a general vaccination duty- compulsory vaccination sounds so ugly! Furthermore, the prince-bishop's council also decided to euphemize the compulsory administration of the anti-witch vaccine-19 with the term 'boosters'.
But let's plunge into the live action at Horst castle, where we can just overhear the Thobary, Luidbeek and Colonel Dumbo having an advisory chat. Of course, some down-and-out lansquenets with typical spears are also part of the scene as extras.
"So Dumbo, you old square head, how are the vaccinations going?"
Persephone watched with amusement the compact commander, whose brutal attempts to make contact with women had given him his unusual nickname. 'El stalkero' now raised his voice, much to the amusement of those present, the pitch of which contrasted sharply with his bulky physique.
"Your gracious mistressship, I obediently report: the entire population has been boosted and in addition we have carried out the bolide vaccination ordered by your mistressship. Three gold pieces per vaccination date were collected, and in case of non-payment for lack of currency, the offspring or suitable family members were confiscated to pay the debt by selling them on the slave market of Delos. In the case of sudden and unexpected deaths after the administration of the elixir, the inheritance tax of 100% was collected as ordered!"
But before the Thobary, grinning contentedly with a predatory smile, could voice her approval, Luidbeek, whose role as best supporting actor thoroughly displeased him, intervened in a squawking voice.
"Colonel Dumbo, how dare you so title Her Glorious Highness, the Countess of Thobary? Tell me also: Why were the non-solvent vaccine deniers and their families not handed over to me, so that I can judge them and consign them to the purifying flames on the stake? How will we ever be able to eradicate the witch virus if the tyranny of the unvaccinated is so shamefully tolerated? Now we have a vaccine that is so highly effective for the treasury and what happens? Some airheads don't want to swill it, because they are totally unsolidary with the prince-bishop state treasury. What fools, what idiots. Like these indescribable heretics who actually claim that the earth is round and revolves around the sun. But it is a general consensus of all scientists paid by the church that this cannot be. Therefore let them all burn..."
"Luidbeek, shut up or the good colonel may prove his qualities as a butcher in uniform and try out how many sword blows such a joker as you may endure!"
Horrified at the nature of the interruption on the part of the mistress, Luidbeek now stood silently with his mouth still open. The anguished expression on the witch hunter's unattractive, ascetic face motivated Persephone to give a short sardonic laugh. In principle, the favourite of Macadabrenses would have agreed with the clownish fanatic, but her 'plans' regarding the inhabitants of New Salem were different.
"My good colonel, tell me now, did everything actually go smoothly in the shearing of the subservient sheep's heads? By the way, you may call me Domina!"
"Report obediently, the citizens have dutifully paid and willingly allowed themselves to be led away into servitude. Commendably, there were even denunciations by concerned citizens regarding various suspected thought crimes among their friends and neighbors."
"I believe, my faithful Dumbo with the big trunk and the small brain, you could castrate the entire male population of Absurdistan with a company of invalids. With most by persuasion, with a few by force!"
"At your command, Domina! I will immediately assemble a force and quickly emasculate the relevant parts of the population."
Domina Persephone stared aghast at the militarist, whose simple-mindedness must have thoroughly misunderstood her bon mot.
"May the Lord rain brains, it was a joke. Dumbo, you are a cretin!"
"At your command, Domina! Thank you for the promotion to cretin, although I don't know exactly what rank that is."
"He's even more of an idiot than Generalissimus Lunauticus, no wonder the Absurdistanis have lost every serious war!"
"At your command!"
Exasperated, the Thobary looked at the beacon of absurdist militarism, then looked angrily at the witch hunter who was smirking to himself.
"Luidbeek, do He cease that impertinent grin, or I will have the aforementioned surgical procedure in the form of a final vasectomy performed on Him by Dumbo with his sword."
While the "rebuked" preferred to suppress his amusement, 'el stalkero' just stared at his mistress in confusion, not understanding the meaning of her words.
"But enough! Dumbo, you immediately send a messenger to my cream puff, the prince bishop. Let him know that I have a wonderful surprise for him here tomorrow evening! So he may hurry. Do you understand?"
"At your command, Domina!"
The Council of State was in the sumptuously furnished 'Reichstag' room of the prince-bishop's palace at a huge, circular table decorated with countless precious stones and listened to the standing freehand remarks of the acting foreign minister, who, although not overly blessed with intellectual abilities, possessed the favor of Macadabrese. Godefroy von Bärenbocken actually contributed more to the episcopal amusement with his bizarrely moronic statements than the former court jester Jan from Bohemia, who had ultimately been quartered because of his ass-kissing government-savvy but bad jokes.
"Blah blah blah. Sultan Suleiman the War-Monger may be crazy because, as an infidel, he doesn't want to throw himself on the mercy of Christianity and give his empire to Pope John the Senile, but he probably isn't stupid. So he will immediately stop his war of aggression against the despot of Epiros, if we threaten him quite violently with an immediate export stop of the firewood we urgently need and of all food supplies. We should also remember that God is on our side because we are the good and orthodox ones!"
Triumphantly, Bärenbock looked at the Prince-Bishop lolling boredly on his golden throne and at the laboriously self-controlled cabinet members on their wooden stools, most of whom were at least moderately talented. The Reaper was in the room within easy reach, so that any outbursts of merriment might come to an abrupt end. Finally, Calvin von Kühnel ¬- the freshest cabinet member and accordingly quite inexperienced with courtly customs - could not refrain from intervening.
"Dear Godefroy, you are talking about exports? As far as I know, we import firewood and food from the Ottoman Empire? Then I still see a certain danger that parts of the population could become poor if imports were stopped and correspondingly fewer taxes would go into the prince-bishop's coffers as a result!"
With the facial expression of an indignant five-year-old, the foreign ministerial expert of misunderstood fundamentals of economics looked at the insolent troublemaker to answer in an indignantly shrill voice.
"Kühnel, how dare you mob me with such hate speech. You understand the most basic rules of the international order. Uh, I mean: You don't understand. Um. You don't understand what is not to understand. We have to show toughness now. Also, we have to stand by our values, like...uh... It doesn't matter."
Seeking help, Bearbuck looked to the Scholzomat, who returned the pleading look completely emotionless, but did intervene because his lord and master watched the situation with interest and chuckled softly.
"My dear Calvin, they really do lack respect for our foreign minister, who is as unusually gifted as he is rhetorically unique!"
The loud laughter of the prince-bishop and obedient giggling of the rest of the cabinet did little to upset the experienced chancellor, who continued unperturbed.
"We should immediately implement the sanctions against the Ottomans, as this also provides a justification for the completely surprising inflation that followed the tax increases and the reduction of the precious metal content of our gold and silver coins. We should also increase the surcharges for domestic firewood so that our treasury does not suffer hardship due to the impoverishment of our subjects. Also we prevent thereby the last judgement or because of me the Apocalypse. Because as innumerable of the scholars alimented by us so completely sensibly and doubtlessly prove, there is there a direct connection between the fall of the world and the deforestation of prince-bishop hunting grounds as well as the lack of building of state palaces! Besides, we should not anger the Holy Father, who is rightly worried about his sinecure in Epirus and calls Christendom to holy war!"
The still-smiling prince-bishop nodded in agreement, while the foreign minister sulkily retreated to his little stool.
"You said that beautifully, my Scholzomat, my little rip-off king! The stupid people only do nonsense with their money anyway. Honorable poverty is the right thing for our citizens. Besides, the lower classes can also starve and freeze once for the freedom of a Christian man. But Chancellor, let's be honest, the Holy Father is a senile fool, who is only a puppet of the Roman oligarchs, who now again hope for fat arms deals!"
Now Calvin saw an opportunity to curry favor with his sovereign.
"Your Grace speaks wiser than the Oracle of Delphi. One really has the impression that age has affected the Holy Father and that he is no longer master of his senses!"
With a furrowed brow, Macadabrense looked at Calvin and snapped his fingers in his usual manner. The Grim Reaper immediately responded to the familiar signal and decapitated the unfortunate flatterer with one blow. While the chancellor, with an emotionless expression, took out a silken handkerchief and began to wipe the decapitated man's blood from his clothes, the remaining members of the Council of State were rigid with horror.
"Blasphemy, how dare this heretic so deny the dignity of our Holy Father!"
In holy anger, the prince-bishop gave his ministerial lackeys a Gorgon look, but then decided to defuse the situation after all.
"Besides : Quod licet jovi, non licet bovi!"
As the Reaper loosened up for the purpose of further amputating activities, those present preferred to pay homage to their master's wordplay with a standing ovation. Almost unnoticed, a lousy lansquenet, escorted by two blue cops, entered and sank to his knees in front of the princely chief priest.
"What kind of creature may He be? Speak!"
Eagerly, the mercenary complied with the request.
"I am Corporal Manneken Piss! Her Ladyship, the Countess Thobary, sends me to tell you that Your Grace may have the extraordinary kindness to honor her at Horst Castle until this evening, as she has a magnificient surprise for Your Most Merciful Serene Highness! Also, the Scholzomat should come along for menial services!"
Delighted, Macadabrense clapped his hands and performed a kind of happy dance for a few minutes to the applause of the entourage.
"Oh you messenger of good fortune, you have reported finely. One harnesses immediately the splendor coach, so that I can hurry to my pure angel. And one takes good care of the bearer in old tradition!"
While the prince-bishop left the ceremonial hall with a joyful hurried step, the grim reaper beheaded the messenger according to ancient custom.
Macadabrense stood expectantly at the battlements of the highest tower of Horst Castle. Also in the party were the Scholzomat, Luidbeek, Dumbo with a torch and, of course, the clever mistress. Arriving only in the evening, Persephone had already had the prince-bishop climb the Tower of Horst in a golden palanquin to present her event in the falling darkness.
"My golden angel, now tell me already, where is my surprise?"
Expectantly like a little boy, the powerful priest prince looked at his beloved. She in turn smiled meaningfully.
"Slow down, my cuddly bear. Dumbo, is everything ready?"
"Report obediently: my boys have spread out across the city and are awaiting the sign!"
"Well here goes, you militaristic genius!"
"At your command!"
Shortly after the colonel threw the torch down the tower, the country servants began to set fire to the houses in the town and murder the good subjects. Confused, the episcopal sovereign looked at the resulting fires and listened to the shouting, while the Thobary smiled mischievously.
"My beloved, have you not in the meantime composed a touching song about the fall of Troy?"
The Scholzomat was the first to understand and uttered the standard phrase in his monotone voice.
"Great Caesar, sing us a song. Delight our ears with your siren-like song!"
"O burning Troy, you proud city of Priam. How the gods have condemned you for not professing Christ! Men, women and children are slaughtered by the merciless fate, because they did not want the Christian choice. You shall be consumed by fire, you shall be inherited by the righteous prince (...)"
Then followed a few more stanzas of the idiosyncratic interpretation of the fall of Ilion
With the exception of Dumbo, whose militaristic mind was not quite able to follow what was happening, the artist's performance ended with frenetic applause from those present. Happily Macadabrense bowed, but then looked slightly worried at the burning city.
"My angel, that was really the most beautiful proof of love that was ever shown to me. However, I wonder if foreign countries won't get the wrong idea when it's revealed that we torched the town, including its inhabitants?"
Smiling cunningly, Persephone looked at her episcopal lover.
"Oh, I thought of that, of course. That's where our Luidbeek comes in, who has undoubtedly been infected with the witchcraft virus. I think he did some weird things with a black cat and other satanic stuff. He probably bewitched Dumbo and the other militarists. Witnesses to this can be found for sure."
While Macadabrense laughed delightedly, once again the Scholzomat reacted.
"I say the Luidbeek is in league with the devil!"
"That's him without a doubt! Dumbo, to the dungeon with that guy!"
"Domina, I am innocent. I swear by the blood of Christ and the Blessed Virgin. This is the truth!"
Persephone smiled sensuously and brushed her long, flaming red hair aside.
"The truth has many faces! Our truth, my dear, you will confess to your torturers!"
© 2022 Q.A. Juyub
All rights belong to its author. It was published on e-Stories.org by demand of Qayid Aljaysh Juyub.
Published on e-Stories.org on 04/13/2022.