Saturday 25 February 2023

A fairytale that has absolutely nothing to do with Scotland


Once upon a time there was a Queen called Nancy and her husband Paul. The trouble is that Nancy wanted to be King, and Paul wanted to be a Queen. So, Nancy came up with an idea that would give both of them what they wanted. Paul would become Paula and then she could love boys in a way she had never loved Nancy and Nancy would become Nathan and then she could love girls in a way that she had never loved Paul.

It would all be very simple for both Nancy and Paul. They wouldn’t need to go to the doctor. They’d just have to promise to either always wear dresses or always wear trousers and after three months they would get a certificate that now they were Queens and Kings respectively.

There was also a long-term friend of Queen Nancy. Agnes Grey supported their political ideals as did her brother Barry Simmonds. Both brother and sister were very rich, although their backgrounds were humble. They had worked hard and were hoping to enjoy a deserved quiet retirement.

But Agnes did not like the idea that Nancy could become Nathan after just 3 months without a doctor’s involvement. She reminded Nancy that she had given her many donations. But Nancy didn’t listen and was unwilling to turn down the chance of becoming Nathan. Agnes was angry.

A short time afterwards Agnes found herself being accused of the most bizarre crime imaginable. She had always done a lot of charity work both at home and abroad, but suddenly she was being accused of the very crime that she had spent decades trying to prevent.

This was a cold way indeed to begin the year. She phoned Nancy to see if anything could be done to clear up the misunderstanding and to remove the obviously false charge on her reputation. But Nancy was still angry with Agnes and refused to do anything to help.

This Queenly refusal or should it be Kingly refusal had worked well when King Alan the Usurper had tried to topple her. He too had pleaded for help, but Nancy had very nearly got him sent to jail and despite his escape from a prison sentence Nancy’s reputation had remained intact even when an inquiry came close to proving she had lied. Nancy would see off Agnes just as easily.

But Agnes was better at business than Nancy and she knew a forensic accountant who had the skill to look into all the outgoings and ingoings of the realm. He discovered who paid what and when who spent what and when and discovered that Paul and Nancy were economical not merely with the truth but with their donations.

Nancy’s kingdom wanted to leave a bigger kingdom of which it was a part. There had been jousting contest to determine the result, but Nancy had lost. She wanted a second joust and had asked the kingdom for funds to put on the tournament.

600,000 ducats had been raised, but unfortunately one day Paul came to Nancy and told her that he didn’t know what had happened to the ducats. Maybe they had been spent on last year’s grand ball, perhaps they had been spent on red dresses or perhaps on sex change operations. He really couldn’t say.

But now the forensic accountant employed by Agnes, who may or may not have been her brother Barry had proved that the Flounder dynasty was indeed floundering.

By this stage it was the second month of the year and the Grand Inquisitor Ishmael Lockwood paid Nancy a visit.

He interviewed Nancy and cautioned her to tell the truth. He presented his evidence and Nancy realised she would never become Nathan instead she hoped merely to avoid the fate she had tried to arrange for the usurper Alan.

If you resign tomorrow said the Grand Inquisitor, I will retire in the next few months too. But you must go. Tell the scribes anything you want about being tired or wanting to spend more time with your family, not that you have a family of course, but abdicate and we will try to ignore the 600,000 ducats.

And so it came to pass that Agnes Grey showed herself to be much more than a mere governess, more skilled than any nurse and better at the business of destroying the Flounder dynasty than Nancy/Nathan could ever have guessed.

Agnes was vindicated. She was good. She was true. She had committed no crimes. But the Flounder dynasty died without issue and the idea of a second jousting tournament died with them. And so

We all lived happily ever after.


Part 2