"And now, please welcome the one and only Brock Harrison to the stage." a red haired girl announced. The auditorium erupted in applause for the brown haired boy that occupied center stage, strumming a peaceful melody on a red-brown acoustic guitar.
When the last chord died, he began his first tale of the evening. "There was once a king who had a love of words...he was a wise king, and had a near photographic memory--if he heard a poem, a story, or a song he enjoyed, he would memorize it. Now, the king wished to open a grand library for his kingdom, but he was a little greedy, and devised a way to cut costs. It turned out that the king had a servant with a photographic memory, but the servant in question had to hear something more than once to memorize it. " With that, Brock set his guitar aside and got up from his chair. "With this thought in mind, he sent out a proclamation inviting all the writers to share their work--with the best original work receiving enough gold to equal the weight of the material the work was written on."
So poets, storytellers, and songwriters flocked to the palace, eager to perform their masterpieces for the king." Brock mused as he paced the stage. "The first author arrived and said he was going to read a poem. "When asked if it was original, the poet swore it was. The king warned him that if anyone in the court knew the poem he was about to recite, then he would know the poet was lying. The poet nodded and recited an eloquent opus about a great hero that had slain a Salamence. When the poet had finished, the king recited the same poem word for word. Stunned that someone knew his work, the poet pleaded that his work was his own. The king then called in his servant--who having heard the original performance and his lord reciting the poem, was able to repeat it word for word." Awed gasps wafted through the audience at Brock's description. "This went on for hours--someone would come in and perform their work, and every time, the king and his servant would recite back the same poem, tell the same story, or sing the same song, sending away many fine authors in shame."
The crowd murmured for a moment. "Now a lord who was a good friend of the king--we'll call him Cato--thought the king's contest unfair, and decided to find a way to expose the flaw in the king's plan." Brock continued as he walked to a table where a piece of paper and a pencil lay. "So he hauled out all his books, and composed a poem that was about ten thousand lines long and filled with the hardest and most obscure words he could find." he narrated as he wrote gibberish on the paper to illustrate this. "He then had this epic opus carved into marble." The audience laughed as he mimiced carving something in stone.
"After disguising himself as a commoner..." He paused to throw on a deep blue cloak. "He loaded the marble slabs aboard several Ponytas and set off for the palace. Once there, he told the king that he too wished to read something." After grabbing his piece of paper from earlier and facing an imagined throne, he went on "Cato began reading his masterpiece, and even the king was confused at the words--it dawned on him that he would not be able to remember such compliacated words." Giggles go up from the crowd as Brock read some of his gibberish. "Wee ki ra araus tes soare an giue mea iem. Was au ga whai pauwel ferda enter whou na needle sor, en whai pauwel gaunji yasra whou na senjue sor tou zuieg."
More laughter goes up from the crowd. "Cato kept reading, and finished until the sun was about to set." Brock continued, tossing his paper of gibberish aside. "The king asked to weigh his opus, and Cato apologized--as he was out of paper, he had carved his masterpiece in marble. As the king weighed each slab, it became clearer and clearer that he would have to pay Cato quite a lot of gold. Cato then revealed himself to the king..." Applause went up as Brock threw off the cloak, revealing himself in his normal clothes. "and explained that he had planned all his work to show the king how unfair he was being by tricking them with his photographic memory. He went on to say the authors should be rightfully compensated, so they would write more work in return." The king reluctantly admitted that Cato was right, and paid all the authors he had sent away and any others that came to the palace with work. Some were paid in gold, some only wanted a few words of inspiration, and on occassion, he gave an author a bit of both--for he didn't want to be seen as unfair!" Applause went up as Brock took a bow and composed himself for his next tale....