Nick Nelson

The Magic Ruby

the magic ruby fell from the sky.

it landed in the dust on one of the roads to the great city, the capital of the mighty empire.

the empire had been ruled for many years, not particularly wisely or well, by the emperor grop xvii, who liked to eat, but took little pleasure or interest in any other activity, especially the activity of ruling the empire.

all this would change with the fall of the magic ruby into the road.

the magic ruby gave whoever possessed it absolute power over the heavens and the earth, and all living creatures crawling under the one and on the other.

the last time the magic ruby had fallen to earth it had been picked up by grop xvii’’s distant ancestor, a wandering minstrel named bobo, who had established the empire and crowned himself marcus the first, the magnificent one.

now, a new age was to begin.

the ruby lay in the road.

four dusty roads led to the road the ruby was lying in.

a little peasant approached from each of the four roads.

the first little peasant, who approached from the west, was named eugene mao. he was a lazy good-for nothing fellow, but quick to take offense, especially at what he took to be jokes at his expense. he had lost his job as a schoolmaster in the little village he had grown up in, and he was making his way to the great city to start a new life as a stevedore’s assistant. but in his heart he had bigger dreams.

the second little peasant was a young girl named joan. she had no last name. she had been suspected of being a witch in her village, and despite being of a naturally placid disposition and inclined to take things one day at a time, she decided it would be best if she headed to the city, rather than face the fate of so many other anonymous wretches before her. she was willing, once she reached the city, to do anything.

the third little peasant was named frankie lee. she had been the town tramp, and after running through all the men in the town and being threatened by half the women, determined to try her luck in the great metropolis, where she was sure her attributes would be appreciated, and her talents allowed to flourish and be rewarded.

the fourth little peasant was named donald trump. a crafty roundshouldered fellow, wth a permanent smirk on his moon face, he had been noted in his village for his annoying habit of providing his neighbors, young and old, male and female, reputable and disreputable, and rich and poor, with irritating and insulting nicknames. once donald had attached a name to a person, he would repeat it at every opportunity with infuriating persistence.

finally one day, the village blacksmith, big john the baptist, whom donald had christened “big butt” - “hey big butt! hey big butt!” - had enough, and he fell upon donald and whipped him with a single tree to within an inch of his life. the other villagers, seeing this, gleefully joined in and drove donald out into the high road and out of their lives.

these then, were the four peasants who approached the magic ruby.

the ruby lay glittering in the dust, as the sun went down…

Nick Nelson is another member of the Pessoan ensemble that is the horace p. sternwall stable of writers who also have a number of books available on lulu as by the 'total dissatisfaction press'.
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