This is just a fairy tale. Really!

Once upon a time there was a young boy who thought he was very smart. In fact, he thought he was the smartest boy in the village, and he thought this because his friends told him he was. They told him this because his father was very wealthy, and when the other little boys told him how smart he was, he bought them nice toys and fine clothes and the best candy and cakes in the village.

This village was on a crossroads where people from many tribes came and went, trading and selling and buying, and some occasionally stayed to live in the village and build houses there and become members of the tribe. The village was very prosperous, its warriors disciplined and well-armed, and it was safe, and the people lived mostly in harmony.

One day it was time to select a new Village Chieftain. Some of the Village Elders decided to stand for Chieftain, and so did some of the warriors, and one of the healers, and one or two other tribesmen who had many cattle and large grain fields and who had large houses with many wives because they traded with other villages and even with other peoples far away who spoke strange languages and made exotic and beautiful items the villagers loved.

The young boy who thought he was the smartest boy in the village also decided to stand for Chieftain. After all, his father had more money than any of the merchants or farmers or any of the Village Elders. At first people laughed at the young boy, but because there was no rule against it, he was allowed to stand for Chieftain.

It soon became clear that the boy was not nearly as smart as he thought he was, and everyone could see he wasn’t smart enough or wise enough or experienced enough to be Chieftain. But the young boy said things many of the villagers liked to hear. He said the Village Elders were corrupt and constantly lied to the people, and so it was no longer the great village it had once been.

He said the villagers were being preyed upon by neighboring tribes, that the prettiest girls were being bartered away to be wives of neighboring tribesmen, that the farmers and merchants were charging too much for the food and goods they sold the villagers, and that the Village Elders had allowed too many freedoms for people who weren’t born to the village, and this, too, was why the once-great village was no longer the wonderful place it had been.

The Elders and many of the people in the village disagreed with this, but when the stones were cast into the Great Baskets, the young boy’s basket had more stones than anyone else’s.

Because he was so young, the boy had no idea how to govern a village, so he began to gather people around him to guide him as he learned how to govern. Several men stepped forward and as the boy talked to them, he selected the men who told him that he was, actually, smart enough to govern, that governing a village wasn’t that hard, that even a young boy could do it as long as he let them tell him what to do.

Many of the Village Elders objected that these men themselves were not qualified to advise a Chieftain, but the elders were too few and too weak to do anything to stop the young boy or prevent him from selecting his advisers.

One adviser in particular flattered the boy and told the boy that he wasn’t just smarter than anyone else, he was actually destined by Almighty Fate to govern the village, and the boy liked this very much and he made the man Chief Adviser.

Soon the Chief Adviser told the new young Chieftain that he shouldn’t listen to any other of the advisers, only to him. Villagers didn’t like this, but soon they were unable to tell their new young Chieftain how unhappy they were because he shut himself up inside his palatial house with his wives and his Chief Adviser and issued Edicts and High Laws for the Safety of the Village.

He had the village’s gates closed and barred, and the merchants could no longer trade with merchants from other tribes. He told everyone who hadn’t been born in the village they had to leave, and soon the village had a terrible shortage of healers and teachers and craftsmen of all manner. This caused widespread grief and pain among the villagers, but the Chief Adviser told the young Chieftain that the pain was necessary for the village to return to its former glory.

One day the Village Elders began to murmur among themselves that the village was suffering badly under the young Chieftain’s rule. Gathering up their courage, they went to the Chieftain’s house, and were surprised to find that many warriors were there and that they, too, had had enough of the young boy’s chieftaincy. After a brief confrontation, the young Chieftain was forced to stand before the Village Elders for judgement. They judged him unfit, and condemned him to be taken by the warriors to the village gates and banished.

The young Chieftain boasted that he could never be deposed because the Chief Adviser had said he was destined by Almighty Fate to rule. At that moment the Chief Adviser came forward, picked up the young boy and hurled him out into the throng among the warriors, where he was promptly killed.

Everyone then looked up at the Chief Adviser and when they did they did not behold a man at all, but a vast black vaporous being, and it emitted a stench that was unbearable to all but a small group of Lesser Beings, and from within the vapor laughter roared forth, and a voice not of this world, a voice that spoke in the shrieks of countless tortured souls.

“Your order is deconstructed!” the voice said, and the vapor spread out over the village until its stink was unbearable. “I am truth personified, all else is lies! I am the Power that cannot be denied for I am Fear, I am Hatred, I am Self-Deception, I am Purity and I am Corruption, and I am in power now and forever!”

Many years later people would come and view the ruins of what had once been a great village and they would remark on how beautiful it must have once been, in spite of the faint odor of rot that lingered, and they would wonder how it could have fallen into such a sorry state. And then they would leave and promise themselves that they would never allow that to happen to their villages.

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