Sir Kaele harrumphed at the sight. A motley bunch of people occupying–no, sullying–the Royal Gardens. Their incessant lute music and off-key singing had kept the king and his ministers up all night, and they showed no signs of dispersing despite being doused with water from the royal bucket brigade and attacked with rubber swords.

Riding up to them on his magnificent courser Runcibelle, Sir Kaele addressed the interlopers: “By order of His Majesty, you are hereby required to desert the royal property immediately!”

One of the people approached him. The squatter’s tunic was bright with swirling colors, and his hair hung long and corded. “Whoa, man,” he said. “You can’t OWN property.”

“Maybe not as a penniless serf like yourself,” sneered Kaele. “Why do you persist in this behavior even when faced with His Majesty’s finest vassals?”

“We are here to peacefully protest the so-called king’s hunting practices,” the man said. “The harvesting of venison and wild boar for feasting iis unsustainable and will lead to the depletion of all animal life in the kingdom!”

“We’re also here to protest the so-called king’s sexist hiring practices,” said a nearby wench in the same spiral-colored regalia. “We demand that men be allowed to work as serving-wenches and women be allowed to work as falconers!”

“And don’t forget about free sexual congress!” cried another.

“And the right to have our apprenticeships paid for by the so-called king!”

“And the taxation of the guilds to keep them from interfering in the political process!”

“The abolition of the knighthood, which eats up so much of our kingdom’s budget!”

“And the replacement of the so-called monarchy with a system of elective and representative government!”

“Here,” said the first speaker, handing Sir Kaele a parchment. “It’s all on this 227-point petition.”

Kaele glanced over it. “How do you expect the king to grant all these requests if he is also to abdicate?” he cried.

“Anything is possible with love.” The squatter approached Kaele and wound a flower around the hilt of his sword.

With a thunderous harrumph, Kaele rode back toward his men.

“What orders, my lord?” his squire said.

“Ready the heavy cavalry,” Kaele said. “We charge at my command.”

Inspired by the song ‘Beatniks a GO GO’ by Hiroki Kikuta, released under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license.

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