Prince Eric and Noir’s Balcony Meal

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Cow and Noir have spent all day meeting people in Cow’s kingdom. After the slight mishap over a little bit of missed food routines, which was only solved by snacking on a corn on the cob or two, Cow went into families’ homes and asked them about their needs. King Cow even provided the families with promises to do all that he could to help them – their problems ranged from overpriced food in the markets to too much dust on the streets. It’s late evening and almost dark, when Cow and Noir return to the palace. Prince Eric has been waiting for Noir all day and upon glancing at her from the kitchen, runs to meet her with two bags of potato chips.

Prince Eric: Noir!…Hi! Did you eat anything today? I noticed you missed breakfast and lunch.
Cow (interrupts): Did you? And when did you get that?
Prince Eric: After I came back home from my ride…a few hours ago!
Cow:A…oh!…well, excuse me! I will just get me some nuts to eat, in this wind-less evening! Noir, my dear, hurry and eat something already now!
Prince Eric: Noir…take the crisps. I’ll just get us something to drink too. What would you like?
Noir: Iced tea, would be great.

Noir and Prince Eric are sat in the balcony on two oversized yellow poufs and looking at the dark blue sky. Noir has already had two packs of chips, a slice of strawberry cake, a slice of walnut cake and iced tea, to makeup for two lost meals today – she feels she should say something to Prince Eric for being so caring but she doesn’t know what she should say.
Noir:…so, how old are you?
Prince Eric: I’m 34. You?
Noir: I’m 21.
Prince Eric: Really? You aren’t so much younger than me then. Most maidens I meet are teenagers.
Noir: Do you?..so, you meet a lot of maidens?
Prince Eric: Yes! We often have balls thrown in our kingdom for celebrations, and women from far and wide come to have a good time and sometimes even look for a husband.
Noir: They look for husbands at your ball?
Prince Eric: Yes! Princes from around the kingdom come to the celebrations, too – the balls are the only avenue for most people in my kingdom and beyond, to meet, have a good time and also enjoy good food.
Noir: They don’t just go to a kebab shop to do that…like here?
Prince Eric: I wouldn’t know. I never left the palace much.
Noir: So how do you get around now?
Prince Eric: Well, I didn’t…I didn’t travel so less. Like, even though it seems neverending, I do know my way around the enormous forest that surrounds our kingdom.
Noir: On a horse?…you do?
Prince Eric: Yeah! On my horse…it’s…one of my favourite past times.
Noir: That sounds nice!
Prince Eric: It is. Maybe…
Turmeric (interrupts): Oooooooooooooooooh! Noir! Have I been looking for you all day. Come with me…it’s almost time for us to finish reading the book we were reading in bed together yesterday evening – I can’t wait to finish it. I just must know what happens in Little Women in the second chapter!

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Cow’s Hungry Problem

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Noir and Cow are out for a walk through the kingdom today. They will be meeting members of the working class and talking to them about their daily issues, and what can be done to solve them. It’s an episode, which Cow looks forward to every week because his heart has always been set on becoming the best ruler the hot land has ever seen. Cow has had nothing to eat whole day though, so the thought is troubling him a little bit because he really isn’t very good with handling hunger.

Noir: So, this is the port we were assigned to for today. Next to it are some slum-like spaces, where we will be meeting people. It’s normally an empty port but today a lot of people are sitting around, probably because of the intense heat. Would you like an umbrella to help with it, sire?
Cow: No, I am good. I am just a little worried that I haven’t eaten anything all day…so I might not enjoy today as much as I usually do.
Noir: Then maybe you should get something to eat first.
Cow: But I didn’t bring any money with me. And I can’t send you back to the palace to bring me some food because then the whole day will get wasted.
Noir: Then focus!

Three young boys, and a woman are walking towards Cow and Noir in a dusty alley filled with dirty and torn clothes hanging from very old buildings. They look very poor but still smile looking at their ruler, and his adviser.

Cow: Good afternoon! I am out for a walk today and wanted to meet some of my royal subjects, just to see what I can help with improving in their daily lives. What’s your name, young woman?
Young woman: Olivia. I live across the street. These three boys are my sons.
Cow: What about your husband?
Young woman: He went travelling to another land, very far away from here, ten years ago, and never came back.
Noir: Really? So you bring up your sons all by yourself?
Olivia: Yes. Would you like to see my house?
Cow:…we would love to. But first I really must ask one of your sons to go back to my palace and get me one of my messengers because I haven’t eaten all day and all of the buildings now look like kebabs to me.

Cow and Turmeric watch Reality Television

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It’s a really hot summer’s day and Noir is busy getting ready for a trip. She’s taking her Arabian horse with her to the market. Noir’s got some grocery shopping in mind because they are all out of fresh vegetables.

Turmeric (pops his head into Noir’s room): Do you want to watch reality television with us?

Noir: Huh?…No thanks! I am going out to the market with my horse. Who else is watching with you?

Noir: Just me and Cow.

Fifteen minutes later… 

Cow (taking a sip from his iced tea): So who do you think is going to win the music contest?

Turmeric (munching on dates): I think the crowd believes it’s going to be someone from India.

Cow: In an Asian music contest?

Turmeric: Yeah! But I don’t understand how. How? They have regional winners from all across, like Vietnam, Philippines and Malaysia.

Two hours later…

Cow: Is Noir back already?

Turmeric: Yeah! I think she’s in her room reading a book. When I went to the kitchen to get a drink an hour ago, I heard her talking to Prince Eric about some book she’s reading.

Cow:…………………………..OH! The winner is from Singapore…………he’s my favourite!

Turmeric: Darn it! I thought the winner will be declared from Indonesia. I loved his cover of I Believe I Can Fly.

Cow: Yeah! But the winner’s cover of Beautiful Day was so much more amazing.

Turmeric: I wonder what made the crowd think the winner would be from India…

Cow: I think people felt bad for him seeing him out here all alone amongst so many Southeast Asians.

Turmeric: Yeah! He’s the only one out here from South Asia. So bad! Maybe next time!

Cow’s Midnight Chat

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Cow has been trying to get some sleep all night but he just keeps turning left and right on his bed, unable to fall into deep slumber. The thunderous rain outside his windows is further keeping him awake. He thinks about checking if Noir is asleep or awake just like him – since, he’s unable to get some sleep maybe a midnight chat will help keep things less boring. Lighting a small candle and pulling his nightcap over his head, Cow walks silently through the golden corridors of his palace.

(four knocks at the door)

Noir (in a muffled voice): Mmm…who is it?
Cow: It’s me!
Noir: Come in! I think I left the door unlocked.

Cow enters Noir’s bedchamber and notices that the goldfish in her room are busy swimming to and fro in the blue fishbowl they call home. He places the candle at the foot of Noir’s bed and plops down on his adviser’s bed, creating a bulge at the spot he’s sat on – Cow is a really round fellow.

Noir: I think I need to get a new mattress after the crater you are putting at the corner of mine tonight.
Cow (chuckles): Well, you know me. I am so round and big.
Noir: Why here in the middle of the night?
Cow: I’m unable to fall asleep and it’s making me very irritated.
Noir: Really? I felt that way a couple of minutes ago when it started pouring outside.
Cow: Why? The weather will be so much colder from now on. The heat preceding it was unbearably intense.
Noir: No, I know that! But why does it always rain in the night? I would have loved to take a look at it through the upstairs balcony but I can’t do that now because it is so late.
Cow (sigh): I know. It’s going to get better now that the annual rainfall has already started. You excited about that?
Noir: I am, yeah.
Cow: How’s work been?…Am I keeping you awake?
Noir: No. I’ve been unable to sleep much myself too. And…
Cow: Well, that’s just divine because we can chat then!
Noir: Yeah! Work’s been good. I have been working on a case – there’s a mysterious seller in town, who’s been selling people a potion that does funny things to people who drink them.
Cow: What kind of funny things happen to them?
Noir: It makes people see ghosts.
Cow (jumps off the bed): Gyahhhh! That’s a seriously scary story.
Noir: It’s not. Because the ghosts arent’ real. They are disguises put on by the seller’s entourage, to help him rob people of their possessions.
Cow (sits back down on the bed): Oh! So this seller’s a bandit?
Noir: He is. But nobody realizes that because they feel the ghost took away all their possessions.
Cow (jumps off the bed): Gyahhhh! Are you sure that’s not a ghost’s doing?
Noir: I’m sure. But the bandit is proving harder and harder to catch. I think his next robbing point will be a small village about 800 miles from here. The locality is filled with mostly poor people but a bandit will still rob at every opportunity.
Cow (stroking his big moustache): I feel proud. Only you can be on his tail, when ghosts are involved.
Noir: Mmm…our town’s replete of bandits. Did you ever notice?
Cow (sits back down on the bed): I did. I was robbed of all my possessions once on a camel journey to Morocco – bandits had left me only in my long white cotton robes, on my camel’s back because I was out without my sword. How foolish of me!
Noir: Indeed!
Cow (shudders): But at least I didn’t get robbed by any type of ghost.

Cow and Noir are at the Fortress

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Cow and Noir are both silent, on camel-back and in front of a fortress. The fortress looks built of mud and fronts pearly black gates. It’s enormous and in front are two guards dressed in plain-white robes, with gold trimmings. After inquiring why Cow and Noir are visiting the fortress, one of the guards proceed with taking them inside to meet the sick king. Inside the fortress, everything is rather quiet, except for ducks sitting near a fountain, or an odd breeze gently moving leaves of trees. The sick king is in his chamber room, and when Cow and Noir meet him, he is busy talking to one of his members of court. The chamber is decorated in plush red velvet, and the bed, even though built of cherry wood is rich in details. Cow greets the king and elaborates on his unexpected short visit – he mentions how he and his adviser rushed over here to meet the king and hope healing of his awful ailment is speeded up.

Abrahim Butros: Ah, Cow! How long has it been since I laid my eyes upon you?
Cow: Not that long! I would think somewhere around two or three years.
Abrahim Butros: That’s preposterous. It’s far too long. Had I not been caught up in my kingdom’s affairs I would have certainly visited. Cow, you don’t have any idea what’s been happening…is that your adviser there standing in the corner of the room?
Cow (turns around): Yes, that is my new adviser. Her name is Noir Chocolate. She is an excellent adviser. Noir, why don’t you come here and chat with the king? It would be very nice.
Abrahim Butros: That won’t be necessary. Why don’t you sit here at the foot of my bed?
Noir: Sure!…why are you dying?
Abrahim Butros: I am not dying! I am just…not healing. I expect to do better within the next few weeks.
Cow: Butros, be serious! You know you don’t have much time.
Abrahim Butros: I will not be dead when my kingdom is going to my rivals.
Cow: But what are you going to do? That is what your people want.
Abrahim Butros: What about what I want? What about my country?
Noir: Weren’t you like your people ten years ago and you had supported Queen Golden’s journey to the national throne?
Abrahim Butros: That’s besides the point!
Noir: How?
Abrahim Butros: That Queen is nearly not as bad as this new Queen my people have in mind.
Cow: What? They are both horrible.
Abrahim Butros: Queen Golden wasn’t as bad. She was dumb and a puppet in her husband’s hands. Do you know what Queen Sophia is like? She was forbidden by her father, like all maidens in the country to join politics. But she got married and her husband let her be an equal to all men in the country. Not only is she going to tarnish our country’s image across the world if she replaces me to the throne but she will also go ahead and give the women in our country brand new ideas of what is must feel like to be a woman in a man’s shoe…Noir do you like sweets?
Noir: I like sweets, yes!
Abrahim Butros: Let’s go for a walk in my courtyard garden. And when we get tired, we can stop and have some sweets from our kitchen.

Cow, Noir and Abrahim Butros are walking in the courtyard garden. It is filled with trees of every shape and size, of flowering plants and smells pleasantly of Butros’ favourite flower too: blue water lily.

Noir: Blue water lily is your favourite flower…why?
Abrahim Butros: Mmm, oh I have been fond of it since I was a little boy. To me, it represents a far away world I have never been to but would have liked to.
Cow: What place is that?
Abrahim Butros and Noir (together): Ceylon.
Cow: Who?
Abrahim Butros: It’s Sri Lanka!
Cow: Oh! That place is Sri Lanka? Wow! I have never been there myself too.
Abrahim Butros: Yes, it is a nice place I have read.
Cow: It is. And so far away too.
Abrahim Butros (heartily slaps Noir on the back): Sweets. My favourite ones look like green and white striped duck eggs. I would love to know which you will like.

Unbeknownst to Abrahim Butros, Queen Sophia is losing her patience over having to wait for her throne and begins to hatch a plan to politically push it up faster – she gathers her supporters to see to it that a political idea spreads out amongst the local people that the transition to power for her happens before the king dies; it will ensure the local people have a say in how the country is run for a change and the expectation is they’ll get so excited by it, Butros will get dethroned in Queen Sophia’s favour immediately. Meanwhile, a kitchen boy serves Abrahim Butros and his two guests some sweets that look like duck eggs, in various colours, on a silver plate in the courtyard garden.

Cow: Oh! Look at all the delicious colours!
Noir: I think I like the orange and yellow one.
Abrahim Butros (gasp): You do? That tastes like red apples on the inside.
Noir: Great! I like apples. What does yours taste like?
Abrahim Butros: Melon. Why don’t you take some back to Egypt for your friends too? I feel they would love the crumbly sweets.
Cow:…mine tastes like fatty buttercream.

Cow and Noir go on Camel Rides

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On a crystal clear blue sky, Cow and Noir are out for a camel ride. The whole atmosphere is hot and sandy. As camels plop their feet on the dunes and the two sweigh while riding their two friendly camels, Rajah and Ranee, a procession of people pass by. At first, Cow thinks it must be a mirage because he and Noir were completely alone in the big desert but soon it turns out that it is not so.

Cow: Young man! Why is there a procession happening?

Young man: It is for our great lord: Abrahim Butros. He is terribly ill and might not live long.

Noir (gasp): Why?

Young man: I think that it is because of his royal subjects plotting to overthrow him. They have taken a great liking collectively to a certain Queen Sophia and want to dethrone Abrahim and make the middle-aged princess their new ruler.

Cow: What an utterly barbaric story! Come on, Noir! Let’s get on with our camel ride in the desert.

Noir: Hang on! Young man, can you tell me more about the story? Where is this happening?

Cow: Over the borders of Egypt and close to Tripoli. Do you know our lord?

Noir: I might have heard of him. Is he still in Libya?

Young man: Yes, that is where he wishes to be buried.

Noir: Alright! Thank you!…Cow do you think we should pay a visit for diplomatic purposes?

Cow: What for?

Noir: For diplomatic purposes. We might know what is up in more detail. Aren’t you the slightest bit interested?

Cow: No, I am. If it’s happening to a border country, you know I am. Did you think I was an American ruler or something?

Noir: Then why did you say you weren’t interested previously?

Cow: I just didn’t think it was the most nicest of stories I ever heard. But maybe we should be going for a visit to the poor chap’s palace…I have made up my mind…let’s set off far and towards Tripoli.

Twelve hours later…

Cow: Whew! Noir…I am tired. Do you want to stop by a market and buy some tents for us to camp in the desert for the night?

Noir: Sure.

Cow and Noir each buy two tents, some kebabs for dinner and set up camp near a pond shaded by palm trees. Their camels are resting too and drinking plenty of cold water from the pond, underneath the deepest and darkest of nights.

Cow: Noir I will tell you a little secret.

Noir: What is it?

Cow: Abrahim rules over savages. His own people find a Queen Sophia more interesting but she sounds a lot like Queen Golden – remember her? She was the ruler right before Abrahim. She knew nothing but regularly pretended otherwise and rumours have it that no one could remove her because of the youth of the country.

Noir: That makes no sense if Queen Golden knew nothing because she probably just ruled forcefully.

Cow: I know that. But I suspect that it was also the fault of the young kids in the country. Did you think they were you, Noir? Did you think that they will support Abrahim, or rulers like him, you know, like how you always support me?

Noir: No, I never thought anything like that.

Cow: Yes. They never cared for their country like how you care for Egypt. It is just too much to expect really from young people around the world like you.

Noir: But kids in Egypt aren’t like that.

Cow: Oh they are just good-for-nothings! They only want to play soccer, fly kites and eat food. They aren’t the slightest bit concerned about Egypt like you are but those kids in Tripoli, Noir…they are culturally different. They use to think just like you. Taking their Libya far was the only thing that mattered to them and look at them now – you are the only one in the region taking Egypt so far and protecting the country like a severe hawk.

Noir: Mmm…this kebab is good.

Cow: I know it is!!! I wonder what kind of kebabs we will be getting where we are going. I wouldn’t want to say goodbye to my lime and lemons.

 

It’s The Night Before Christmas Eve

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Tis the season to be share nachos with mates…

Mama Violet, Genie Turmeric and Noir Chocolate are watching a film on the night before Christmas Eve.

Turmeric: I have always enjoyed Titanic. It’s one of my favourite romance movies ever!

Noir: Really? Why do you like it so much?

Turmeric: I like Jack! I think he is a very handsome young man and what happens to him is so tragic! It’s hard to not feel emotionally connected to him when he dies in the ocean to save his beloved…

Mama Violet: Yeah…Jack dies for Rose in the end and I don’t like Rose.

Noir: Neither do I! She is too fat but doesn’t get it and I think Jack fell for Rose in Titanic because she feels so like real to him!

Turmeric: Oh! I hate Rose…she is so big she ended up resting on an entire doorway all by herself when the ship…sank!

Noir: I know! Jack should have let Rose float instead in the ocean and put himself on the door! With how huge Rose is, she would have easily been her very own round life raft in the icy waters to float around!

Turmeric: Hahahahaha! Oh! That’s seriously funny!!!!!!!!!!

Mama Violet: Yeah…what about Rose’s mother? What do you think of her, Noir?

Turmeric: I think she is a hag!

Noir: I think she is a shame to the high class or aristocratic class or whatever it is you want to call it. I mean, she couldn’t look after Rose because she was in debt because of her husband and then didn’t even get a job to get out of it. Instead, Rose’s mother actually contemplated working as a mere seamstress, which isn’t really some kind of job for an aristocratic lady to talk about in a dignified manner, and it was all to properly look after herself and her seventeen-year-old daughter but she also approached that with a lot of dread and then in the end all that happened was that she coerced Rose to marry a young man with a fortune so that Rose and her mother can comfortably continue to live their aristocratic life for like forever! How disgraceful!

Mama Violet: I know! Your from a high class yourself…what does your mother do?

Noir: Oh! She works in fashion! She’s a fashion designer in Paris! She has her own fashion label which has been showcasing collections in Paris Fashion Week ever since the nineties! It’s a relatively new label she founded herself when I was a kid but it’s rather well-known and everything and she regularly designs all of the clothes the label manufactures!

Turmeric faints hearing the story…

Noir: Turmeric…are you alright?

Eric pops into the living room then with some nachos.

Eric: Noir, do you want some nachos with your movie?

Turmeric then wakes up hearing Eric’s voice…

Turmeric: I am alright, Noir! You boy…come here and feed me nachos, pretty please!

Eric: What? No!…Noir, do you?……..do you want some nachos?

Noir: I think I want nachos, yeah!

Turmeric: Hmph! (mutters under his breath) I cannot believe Jack ends up with Rose in Titanic and these two are still only sharing nachos. I think it’s time I take this matter of love I would love to see inbetween Prince Eric and Noir into my own hands…mwahahahahahaha….oh! Sorry! I must do this in a hush-hush!

The Know Your Tarts Series

Tis the season to spend time with family...
Tis the season to spend time with family…

Cow,  Prince Eric, Noir and Turmeric are having a guessing game on for the evening as a way to relax and catch up with each other.

Noir: I have an idea for a game. When I say a sentence that a girl usually says after a date, you have to finish it in a way you feel that it should end.

Turmeric (blushes): Oh my! That sounds so amazing! I want to go first!

Noir: Stephanie says she feels unusually sick in the morning…

Turmeric:…why?…I mean…but the precious has no idea why!

Noir: Stephanie says she wants to go to have a holiday with a mountain-view…

Cow: She wants to be rugged and the right girl for you because she absolutely loves hiking!

Noir: Stephanie says she is cooking a meal for two…

Eric: Because she feels romantic 24/7…she’s the cutest and the most simple-minded thing in the world because great minds think alike…in romance…too !

Noir:……………………………..right!

Turmeric:…I want to watch a movie now! But who won?

Noir: Ah! I think…Eric!

Eric: YAAAA!!!!

Noir: Since Eric won, he can uhhh pick the film!

Eric: Yeah! Let’s see…we can watch ‘The Hangover’!

Noir, Cow and Turmeric (all together): Yeah!!! That sounds brilliant!

Noir & Turmeric

Noir finds a very useless genie, Turmeric, which she decides to get to train

Noir and Eric have gone to the bazaar to get some fresh produce for the palace kitchen. Little does Eric know that in his leather-tasseled-backpack, two of Noir’s pets, these mischievous skunks, have hidden themselves as stowaways, onto the bazaar. At the bazaar…
Eric: Can I get that green cabbage please? And about 1kg of tomatoes?
Grocer: Sure!
Just then, from Eric’s backpack, the two skunks peer out and release their typical toxic smell. Eric smells this toxic smell around him and starts to believe he has been double-crossed. Dropping the produce instantly, and opting out of purchasing rotten-smelling vegetables, Eric begins to argue with the grocer over his tricks.

Meanwhile, at the bazaar…

Noir is at a different end of the bazaar. She gets a kilogram of seedless chilli fries and a kilogram of enchiladas, for her daily cooking needs. Right next to the shop of spices, is a a vast market of ornaments and trinkets sellers. In that market, a lamp catches her eye…
Noir: Old man! How much do I have to haggle for that old gold lamp?
Old Man: Not that much! I will give it to you for thirty-five gold coins. It comes with a genie…
Noir: Really? Will that genie do everything I ask him to?
Old Man: Why don’t you give it a rub and find out?
Noir gives the lamp a rub and out pours a genie wearing white robes and a golden turban.
Genie: Oh hello!!! You have rubbed my lamp! So, from now on you are my sire!
Noir: What’s that?
Genie: You are my sire! And I will give you everything you desire in love!…I will grant all your wishes in love, my dear!
Noir: But I don’t need any of that! What else can you do?
Genie: But…you must get me! That is my only power. I can grant all your wishes in love!
Noir:…what is your name?
Genie: Turmeric!
Noir: Okay! I will get you, and then maybe I can teach you some tricks…
Turmeric: Why you eye me, you boy?
Noir: What?
Eric: I wasn’t eyeing you!
Noir: What?
Turmeric: I am talking to that boy, there! Why you eye me?
Eric: Shut up! I only came to see Noir!…Noir, can we go to another bazaar?…I think the vegetables are kind of funny-smelling here!

Cow & Alexander

Cow gets a visit from Alexander and the two bicker about the latter’s kingdom

Alexander, also known formally as “Alexander XIV The Mighty Lion”, is a friend of Cow. Cow and Alexander have a bittersweet friendship – the two rulers have fought many hard battles against each other over their respective regions and in many parts of the world, Alexander is considered to be a superior king than Cow, primarily because he has ruled so many Arab states, for decades, when Cow has only ruled the major one in Egypt. Alexander’s worst enemies, however, are no different than Cow’s; all of Alexander’s rivals are corrupted and like Cow (who only keeps losing money to his rivals) he keeps losing to his rivals. Alexander has come for a brief visit to Cow’s kingdom…
Cow: I am so happy to see you, Alexander. I haven’t heard from you for a very long time. Why is that?
Alexander (ignoring him): Cow!!! What is this I hear? You have a new adviser but you will not introduce the two of us to each other?
Cow: I shall do what I please in my kingdom!
Alexander: Is that any way to treat your friend?
Cow: I am treating you far better than how you treat your people!
Alexander: My…my people? My kingdom is built out of force, not on my people, or for my people…if I had any!
Cow: What? You invaded your town from the inside?
Alexander: No, you idiot!!! I rule because I am the mightiest! Now, where is this adviser of yours? Be quick!

Cow rushes to get Noir…

Cow introduces Noir and Alexander to each other, and Alexander takes an instant liking to Cow’s new adviser. Alexander has been one of those kings who has never been popular amongst his royal subjects because of a thorough deficiency in fine diplomatic skills; Noir, a polar opposite, despite being an adviser to the monarch, not the monarch, has always enjoyed widespread popularity in Cow’s kingdom. Alexander was only seventeen when he realised that he will be a ruler of mammoth proportions because of his hard work and his thunderous approach to eliminating all local rivals, by all means. Hated by local contemporaries he could never win over, foreign rulers (who desperately wish to be him but never admit it out loud) and his royal subjects, Alexander is still one of the greatest rulers in the Arab world.
Noir: I am pleased to know that your kingdom has been flourishing off-late.
Alexander: Yes, it has been! I think it was…all because the seasons have been kind to us, for a change! My royal subjects have already gathered all of the harvest and now it is busy hitting the farmer’s markets, in a more regular manner.
Noir: Is the local rivalry getting too much?
Alexander: It’s nothing I cannot handle! I have a lot of troubles there within my own kingdom, actually. Too many people want to have everything in a different way from me.
Noir: I have heard they care too much and forget they are rulers talking to their royal subjects! I would have never been able to tolerate such an attitude towards class divides, here in Egypt.
Alexander: That is nothing! Yesterday wearing ‘the emperor’s robes’, I was out for a visit to the countryside to see how my subjects are doing and when I was there I found all the villagers dressed in my spare robes, given to them by my kingdom’s adviser because he found it too difficult to take the villagers are poorer than him and me.