“You, sir!” boomed the guard. “Are you Johan, the cook?”
“Yessir,” said the cook, a lanky sort of man with wiry muscles and a tidy blond beard. He was stirring a bubbling pot hanging above the stove.
“The King demands to know what you put in his bisque.”
“What I put in his bisque, sir?”
“That’s what I said, boy.”
“Sir, it’s a secret recipe. Handed down my family for generations, sir. I assure you it’s very delicious. Here, would you like some?”
The guard sniffed at the bisque as the cook waved a spoonful under his nose. The guard licked his lips, gliding across the bottom of his bushy mustache.
“It smells delicious,” he said. Then he drew back, stiffening straight. “But I must decline! Now, why did I come here…? Oh, yes! The King. His Highness is having an unusual sort of allergic reaction to his dinner.”
“An allergic reaction, sir?”
“Again, that’s what I said!” sputtered the guard, his armour clinking with frustration.
“To my bisque, sir?”
“That’s what I’m hear to find out, you dolt! What did you put in the bisque?”
“Sir, it’s a secret reci–”
“I know, but the King is puffing up like a blowfish and he shows no sign of stopping.”
“Like a blowfish, sir?”
“A blowfish, as I said!”
“Have you tried giving him a prick from your spear, sir?”
“I will not stab my King–”
“Just a prick, sir, only a prick. To deflate him, sir. Like a bubble.”
The guard considered this.
“Just tell me what you put in the bisque,” he said.
“Sir, I uphold all secrets. I take a point of honour ‘pon it. You wouldn’t want an enemy asking me all my secrets and having me confess everything on the spot, would you?”
“Johan, the King is floating over the dinner table.”
“And you haven’t tried deflating him? Not once?”
The guard’s mouth thinned out until it was unrecognizable behind his mustache. With a growl of frustration he turned and fled out of the kitchen.
The dining hall was filled with servants with broomsticks trying to coax the king back to the earth, but only succeeding in pushing him across the rooftop.
“Get me down!” barked the king in an uncharacteristically low voice. “Down, I say!”
The guard gripped his spear and thrust up–only slightly–into the thigh of the king. The king yowled in pain, but a sound like a horse’s fart overwhelmed the noise. And so the king flew about the room, deflating and blowing out candles left and right, before coming to a slow landing, coincidentally, in his dining chair.
Unfortunately, the king had flattened like a fine slice of ham.
“My Liege?” the guard asked, a droplet of blood dribbling down the shaft of his spear, coating his knuckles.
The king flopped forward wetly, his face splashing into his still-warm bisque. He didn’t move. Not even to breathe.
Johan the cook was there. He had come in while the king was still deflating. He pointed to the guard with the bloody spear and shouted, “Assassin!”
And while the rest of the guards apprehended the poor mustached guardsman, Johan used the chaos and excitement to quietly steal a horse and ride back to his own kingdom.
Today’s random hat trick prompts were: “An unusual allergy,” “An assassin,” and “A secret recipe.”
Had some fun with this one. I imagined it all playing out in a scene in Final Fantasy IX. Sometimes I have a whimsical imagination! I think I’m going to start writing “the end” at the ends of my stories, just to further separate them from these post-story outros.