The Prince and the Captainby Angie

30 Jul 2008
9:07 am

Once upon a time, in a kingdom by the sea, there lived a handsome Prince.  This Prince was married to a beautiful Princess and they lived in a lovely little castle surrounded by gardens and fountains, where all was peaceful and pleasant.

One day, the Captain of the royal army visited the Prince and asked if he would be willing to take some time to work with a group of young men that the Captain was very interested in.  Though a little wild and unruly, they were all honorable and of noble families, and the Captain was confident that they could be trained as fine knights if they had a good friend and example like the Prince to help them.  Willingly, the Prince agreed to do all he could for the young men.

The Prince began to meet regularly with the noble boys.  Sometimes it was to teach and train them, and sometimes it was to lead them in great adventures and quests.  As their friendship grew, the young men learned to admire and appreciate their Prince and wanted to emulate him and win his approval.  The weeks grew into months, and the Prince felt gratified to see what fine young gentlemen his boys were becoming.

When the months had almost become a year, something unexpected happened:  The Prince received another visit from the Captain of the royal army.  He looked very serious and began,

“My Prince, I’m afraid there is trouble at our borders.  We are not yet in a state of war, but I feel it necessary to begin preventative action to protect our kingdom from future attack.  I need someone to act as our negotiator and strategist in these endeavors.  I have considered every one of my officers and generals, but I have come to the conclusion that you are the best man I could choose.”

The Prince was surprised, and said,  “I feel I am hardly qualified for such military responsibilities…”

“You have integrity and intelligence; that will be more important than military training in this situation.  You are also trusted and loved by the people of your kingdom, and that is vital in these dangerous times.”

“Thank you.  I do feel trusted and loved, especially by the young men I have spent so much time with of late.”

“Yes, that is another thing,” the Captain responded.  “These responsibilities, added to the work your birth and position have placed upon you, will leave you no more time for lessons and adventures with your young knights-in-training.  I will see that they are taken in hand by another nobleman as soon as possible.”

A year seemed to pass in a second as the Prince, dismayed, stared searchingly into the face of his royal Captain.  The command left a sharp pain where his love for the boys had grown.  He felt he must have failed them, to be so suddenly and easily replaced.   The Prince knew his Captain well, and had always trusted his judgement, and always before found it easy to sustain the wise decisions of the brave veteran.   It never entered the Prince’s mind to refuse, yet it was still very difficult to agree.

But He did.

To be continued…