A Chain of Food

There was once a Princess who kicked up an awful ruckus every mealtime.

Now, in that particular day and age, Princesses were not supposed to be indecorous at meals. Really, none of the aristocracy were; and certes, one cannot expect a sprog of a certain age to act with flawless etiquette. In fact, a certain amount of tantrum is essentially universal to all persons-of-a-certain-toddling-age. Likewise, pickyness about food isn’t unusual.

However, this case was particularly bad. No matter how they were cooked or prepared, the Princess simply hated eating other Pincesses.

Her parents, the Queen and the Prince Consort, were completely unmoved. It is essential for an offspring of the Blood Royal to establish herself within the hierarchies of various nations, and obviously, this included consuming the most high-status food as available. One did not battle one’s way to the Throne to simply go around eating peasants, like peasants do.

One could make this a morality tail about the viciousness of royalty. You see where this is going, aye? I’m not the first to say that one way to prove your superiority in the Great Chain Of Being is to be the very highest on the food chain.

(To say nothing of the weird belief that you might find someone contemptible…but also worth eating…and then you eat their heart to gain their knowledge and wisdom.)

(Which is, I suppose, better than the thought that eating a heart will bring you bravery…but I digress.)

What I’m trying to say is that you can seek status wherever you desire. And no, I don’t expect you to release me. I’m not trying to talk my way out of this. I don’t even WANT to talk my way out of this.

You think that, by killing me, a very-slightly-less-peasantly-peasant, you’ll become closer to a Queen?

Oh, you will.

You will.

More petty. More vengeful. More foolish. More paranoid.

Part of that is in my flesh; my flesh is a seething mass of creation, waiting to burst out in strange places and strange ways, held in place by the mind that you plan to still and then chew.

But part of it’s just you, baby.

Just you.

Eat me, and become more like them.

Become more like them, and you’ll become more of the things you hate.

It’s not inevitable for the oppressed to turn into the oppressor.

It’s just that, given the choice, they almost always do.

But you go ahead. You do what you think is best. You believe what you believe.

Skinned, skull racked, and broken, my forgotten bones will dance a quiet little jig in, say, ten or twenty years from now, when it’s you on the butcher block.

Go ahead. Pain is temporary; “I told you so” is eternal, even if it comes from an airless and silenced throat.


Jeff Mach Written by:

Jeff Mach is an author, playwright, event creator, and certified Villain. You can always pick up his bestselling first novel, "There and NEVER, EVER BACK AGAIN"—or, indeed, his increasingly large selection of other peculiar books. If you'd like to talk more to Jeff, or if you're simply a Monstrous Creature yourself, stop by @darklordjournal on Twitter, or The Dark Lord Journal on Facebook.