Fiction: Diplomatic Catastrophe

Sweet Maid Sally, Mayor of Vesper (and pirate) woke up in her soft featherbed. Her servant curtsied slightly, then brought in her breakfast of scrumptious eggs, ham, bacon, and fresh biscuits, along with the daily paper. Sally read the lead article and laughed so hard she spilled her orange juice.

Staff Reports

Lord Kendal’s diplomatic visit to Jhelom did not begin auspiciously. Kendal told his welcoming delegation, “I didn’t come here for my health. I can think of other ways of enjoying myself.” He then asked, “Aren’t most of you descended from pirates?”

On a tour of the city, Kendal shared more of his thoughts:

  • Of the library: “Jhelom has a library? Whatever for?”
  • Of the performing arts center: “It’s a vast waste of space.”
  • On meeting a Britain-born Jhelom woman: “You can’t have been here too long, you still look like a woman.”
  • On visiting Jhelom’s graveyard, “I guess not ALL your warriors do so well.”
  • Of the tropical northwestern Jhelom island: “This is what I thought the entire town would look like.”

Kendal did show some sympathy for his hosts. “We have that problem in Britain too,” he said of Jhelom’s protestors. “The peasants were saying they wanted more leisure time. Now they’re complaining they’re unemployed.”

It is a mystery how Kendal came to be chosen for the mission, particularly in light of his comment at a Merchants’ Guild meeting last year: “People think there’s a rigid class system in Britain, but dukes have been known to marry whores. Some have even married girls from Jhelom.”

Lord Kendal is expected to offer his apologies this evening, at a meeting with Jhelom’s military leadership.

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