Kingdom Tales: Balance

By Michael Robinson III All Rights Reserved ©

Fantasy / Action

Chapter 5

That night at dinner Vincent announces his decline to Prince Winston’s council and that Sir Rollrick should take his place. Winston accepts his decision and agrees with Vincent’s substitute. An announcement that Lillian silently cheers about unknown to the two friends.

After dinner, however, Winston begins to ponder his first move as he walks the halls of the castle and finds himself at a lost. He and Vincent decided that he would take care of the Order of the Lords, while at the same time build up the kingdom, but he had a problem. The crown and kingdom are at an all time low in terms of money. At least to start any new ventures.

Prince Winston stops at a window and looks to the starry sky in thought. The kingdom’s rapid expanding combined with a tax system that practically drained the people is the cause. It was the reason his father halted expansion when a winter came that decimated crops for that year. It also set the kingdom back in terms of progress.

Before that winter the kingdom had a thriving lumber, and mining industry. Since there was no need for so many farmers people once again being pottery makers, blacksmiths, and metal workers. Even activities such as jousting and horse racing were at their height. However, as a result of the widespread loss of crops and complete depletion of reserves that all came to a crawl. Prince Winston sighs and continues on walking.

It’s a while before he notices his feet have cared him to one of the royal treasuries. He stops outside the towering door way and looks up to it silently. A moment passes before he chooses to open the door and takes a look inside.

The room contains mountains of gold and silver along with precious gems and crystals that have culminated over the past four generations. A good amount is a testament to Agion’s past king’s success in conquest, specifically Andreious the Great also known as Andreious the Conqueror. The room itself is even gold he observes as he walks inside looking around with wide eyes. Winston realizes a vast source of wealth sits before him; one that he could use to bring his people from the brink, but should he.

The prince thinks to himself. Should he risk his family’s wealth on ideas he isn't even sure are going to work? He closes his eyes and begins to pray as a result of his doubt. Something Vincent taught him how to do in such times. Suddenly a voice comes upon his mind telling him to look around. As he does so Winston hears

Give all you see and what like it lies elsewhere and I will make you the envy of your neighbors.

Prince Winston heeds the answer and thanks God for it. As far as he knew it was rare for an answer to come quickly like that. He also becomes confident in his plans and decides to execute them immediately.

The next day Prince Winston joins his mother, Lillian, Malinda, and Jamonson in seeing off Vincent as he begins his return to Crotella tower, the headquarters of the knights. The prince embraces his friend before he sets off, for he knows they both will be busy for a time and may not have time to see each other.

“Keep an ear out for news from me. I’ll keep in contact by letter and way of Sir Rollrick.”, Vincent tells him as they come out of their farewell.

“Right. And you do the same for me. A lot of change is coming; good change.”, Prince Winston informs him. A look of interest appears upon Vincent’s face.

“Really? So you have a plan?”

“I do and I need to get it started immediately.”, Winston informs Vincent.

“Anything I need to know?”, Vincent asks. Winston shakes his head.

“Not yet I’ll let you know. Don’t worry.”, Winston replies. With that Vincent exchange words of farewell with everyone else and goes on his way. Everyone present had also heard Winston’s words and once Vincent is out of sight Lillian turns to the prince.

“What’s going on?”, she asks. Winston turns eyes closed, head down and grin. He goes up a couple steps before bringing his head up and turning it to everyone.

“I’m about to rule.”, he answers simply.

“Never thought I would hear such an awful line from the prince.”, Jamonson comments half to himself. Though everyone nods in agreement. Winston responds with a laughing smile.

Once he enters the castle Winston makes his way to his private studies. There he approaches his desk where a collection of papers seats in a pile. He drew up these papers last night immediately after he left one of the three treasuries.

He looks over them one last time and once he makes sure everything is as he wants it he drops wax from a candle on to the first page and presses one of his rings into it leaving the king’s seal on the parchment. Taking a moment to see what he has done Winston takes a deep breath and releases it.

Immediately after he summons his court to the throne room. He stands in front of his throne holding the papers.

“I have summoned you all here to announce my first decree as ruler of this realm.”, he begins once everyone is present and quite. Mummers erupt in response to his words, but with a raise of his hand they cease. Presenting the papers he carries Winston continues in a confident, strong voice. “As of today as stated on these parchments that bear my seal. I hereby suspend the use of gold and silver as the kingdom’s domestic currency and to be replaced by a substitute currency.”, voices of confusion and shock fill the room. Questions are hurled at Winston; which he did foresee.

He takes a breath and signals for silence again. When it happens he scans the room and the people present. “Our nation has, for a long time, been one of peace and prosperity, but we can not ignore that now we are in a state of hardship.”, he begins somberly. “Hardship we must overcome and will, for as long as I am king I will not allow anything else.”, he goes on bolder, stronger, and more authoritative.

The people respond positively to his speech, but he goes on. “The transition from the use of gold and silver itself to a paper substitute will allow many positive changes that will include, but not limited to an everlasting, fixed value and certainty among merchants and consumers when conducting business. Starting as soon as possible citizens with money will be able to exchange whatever they have for the new currency. An advance notice will go out prior. Until then the current standard shall remain in place. I can not go into great detail now, but be patient and you will see it is good. This is my final word for now.”, he continues on.

Everyone slowly begins to exit the room. The royal announcers prepare to head out and make known the new decree and information on the exchange to come known. As they do Winston sits on his throne and is approached by his mother.

“What on earth are you doing, Winston!”, she says with pure shock and bewilderment. “I honestly don’t know what to say.”

“Then don’t say anything and listen, mother.”, he says calmingly. “It will be more efficient if paper money is in use than gold and silver for what I have planned. By producing paper money we can produce enough for those who earn it faster and more efficient. Also those who carry it will find that it is lighter and easier. This means it will be harder for bandits to harass merchants.”, Winston explains.

“You say it will help with fraud among those who take part in business...?”, his mother response.


“How?”, she challenges him. Winston’s intensity increase in his eyes out of passion.

“Each parchment will bear a mark that shows it is backed by the gold held by the crown. There is an invention created by someone I know. A printing machine or printing press he calls it. It uses molds that can mass produce an exact copy of what will all go on the parchment.”, he tells his mother. “Speaking of which. Charlie!, Go to the residence of Sir Daniel and tell him to come to the castle. Take two guards with you and do not be hostile.”, Winston goes on to a present servant. At once the servant does as he is told.

“Not only are you taking a chance with a new, unheard of system, but with an invention as well.”, Winston’s mother comments softly looking after the servant.

“Life is full of chance mother. If no one has the courage to do it than nothing new would be created. Although mine is insured by God and my faith in him.”, Winston replies rising to his feet. “Just wait. Vincent will be taking his own chances soon and I’m not done yet either. If you’ll excuse me.”, Winston goes on before walking past his mother to submit his design for his kingdom’s new currency.

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