Short story by me.
Nathaniel didn't like to call it revenge; Returning the favor sounded much nicer. The small kingdom of Chance never saw it coming. There had been neither rumors nor whispers of it in the neighboring kingdoms, nor, had there been anything like it before. The Sleeping Death is what they had learned to call the disease. It crept into their homes a clear blue mist filling the rooms, taking their last breath whilst they slept.
Hundreds upon thousands of people lay dead throughout the country, yet King Edwin was unconcerned. King Edwin liked to surround himself with psychics and mediums. His favorite was a psychic named Bastian. Bastian told the king "Since you are of royal blood, noting but a natural death would ever bestowed you." It was this remark that led the King to believe that his beloved castle was disease-proof. Upon this revelation, he developed the plan to invite a thousand of his closest friends and family to the castle for a grand supper.
That is partly how Nathaniel found himself sitting in a chair inside the grand ballroom at the biggest table he had ever seen in his life. The people who surrounded the table spoke, laughed and ate as though death wasn't just outside the door. "Christian," Queen Daisy called down to Nathaniel with a delighted smile upon her face. (Christian was the name if Nathaniel's twin brother.) Christian had befriended the Queen when she was just a child; he was her oldest friends and closest confidant. Christian was the other reason why he found himself inside at the supper.
A few days prior, Nathaniel had been on a hunting trip with his brother when it had happened. The Sleeping Death entered the kingdom that night-taking Nathaniel's wife Ella. His heart both broke and hardened that day, It broke over the death of Ella, but it hardened when he went to the King and asked him to help his kingdom. Because he was Christian's brother; the King agreed to talk to him. "This Sleeping Death you talk of has nothing to do with me, nor has it anything to do with my family. I see no reasoning in why I should help you." King Edwin said.
"Does not have anything to do with you? Your Royal Highness, your kingdom is dying beneath your feet! For each night that passes, more and more of the people your people are succumbing to death. How does this not concern you?" Nathaniel asked, hatred attaching itself to every word as it spilled from his mouth.
"I have nothing more to say to you but to ask you if you would deliver this invitation to your brother from my wife. She would very much like him to come to our supper this Friday. Tell him it would mean everything to her to have him here with us," King Edwin said taking a small rolled up piece of parchment from Bastian. As Nathaniel took the invitation, the King smiled, "Have a lovely night."
Upon returning home, Nathaniel told his brother the story of what had happened at the castle. He then presented his brother with the invitation from Queen Daisy. "I have yet to see why she loves him so. He is nothing but narcissistic and pompis. He should be helping what is left of his people, not celebrating the deaths of those who have been taken." Christian paused, looking from his brother to the invitation. "You will go in my stead," he said.
"Me?" Nathaniel asked a bit baffled at his brother's words. "I want nothing to do with this supper. For all I care about this supper is for King Edwin to choke upon his fancy food. It is what he deserves."
"Precisely, brother." Christian said with a mischievous smile upon his lips. "Would you like to hear my plan?" Nathaniel nodded slightly, not sure he truly wanted to hear this plan, but also not sure he truly didn't. "You shall go as me, whilst you are there, you shall present King Edwin with a bottle of my finest hand-made wine. (King Edwin has said before he can not resist a drop of my wine.) He will drink the whole bottle himself. However this wine will nit be like any other I have made for him before. For this wine will be laced with pokeberries: half a glass and he shall succumb to death. It is what he deserves for letting his people suffer whilst he sits around and dines with friends." Nathaniel was taken with the idea immediately.
(Present day.) "Yes, Daisy?" Christian (Nathaniel) replied, smiling at the Queen.
"How is your poor brother doing? I hear through the whispers maids that Ella has been taken by the Sleeping Death." Queen Daisy said.
"He is devastated, Mum. Ella was the love of his life. He will find another like her I fear." Christian (Nathaniel) explained with much sorrow. Pain shown in the Queen's eyes.
"There will be no more talk of death. WE are here to celebrate great friends, great family and great health!" King Edwin Roared from the head of the table.
"To health!" the res of the table repeated raising their glasses as well. He raised his glass full of Christian's fine wine to his lips and began to drink. King Edwin brought his free had to his throat, the room fell silent as he started to choke violently. Fear filled eyes locked with Nathaniel's as he slumped forward to his death.
Queen Daisy rose to her feet and rushed to her husbands side. "Edwin! Edwin!" she scrame shaking the King.
"Hes gone my Queen." Bastian said wrapping his arms around her. Bastian looked down the table to Nathaniel.
Nathaniel slowly rose to his feet. Wine glass in his hand. "Long live the King." He said a cruel smile upon his lip he turned and slowly walked out of the castle. Once at the castle gates he stopped to take one last look at the castle. Just in time to see the Sleeping Death slowly creeping under the castle doors.