The Tale of Two Princes

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The First Quest

Jacob walked through the palace gate

And through the hall he stared.

His father looking deathly ill

Sat in his golden chair.

“Dear Jacob, you received my call,

Thank God that you are here.

For times are getting tough for me,

I fear the end is near.”

“Oh father, anything for you,

I came as fast I could.

Your people needed aid in town,

I helped them like I should.”

The king held open wide his arms,

And accepted his son’s embrace.

When from across the room he saw

A dark and sinister face.

“Hello dear brother,” Lucien said,

While striding with a sneer.

“I didn’t expect your presence;

What are you doing here?”

“Lucien, I have brought him here,”

The king said to his son.

“For just because you’re eldest,

Doesn’t mean the throne you’ve won.”

Lucien’s face turned into rage,

“I do not understand!

I am the eldest son of yours!

I was born to rule this land!”

The king responded hastily,

“It’s not about yourself!

It’s about responsibility,

Not power, land, nor wealth!

There is going to be a tournament,

Three quests you must complete.

The one who wins the challenges,

Is the one to take my seat.”

Lucien’s sneer turned to a smirk.

He laughed at such a whim.

He knew that Jacob’s puny self

Could never outdo him.

Jacob, on the other hand,

Was frightened of the quest.

But to make his dying father proud,

He’d try to do his best.

Jacob lay in his bed that night,

Staring at the fire.

He dreamed of winning the tournament;

He had this one desire.

The trumpets sounded the next day,

And the old king took the stand.

“The tournament shall begin today,

And indeed it will be grand!”

Jacob and Lucien approached the throne

As the crowd gathered around.

The bishop blessed both princes

On their quest to win the crown.

“The first challenge shall be of wit;

The throne is now at stake.

Each of you must find a way

To the island in the lake.”

Lucien laughed and flexed his arms;

His strength would carry him.

But Jacob feared this first quest,

For he could not swim.

As they approached the shoreline,

The island looked many miles ahead.

Jacob gazed across the lake,

It was drowning he did dread.

The canon fired, and the quest began.

Lucien started to swim.

As Jacob approached the water,

The old fisherman grabbed him.

“Prince Jacob, since you saved my catch,

I offer you my boat.

Please use this to reach the land

And help to keep you afloat.”

Jacob thanked the fisherman

And started on his way.

He paddled long and hard

Until he reached the isle at bay.

He planted his blue flag

And watched it wave across the sky.

The people of the kingdom

Cheered that he survived.

Lucien reached the island shore,

Completely out of breath.

He couldn’t believe his young brother

Had actually cheated death.

Upon the return to the king,

Lucien made his claim.

“Father, Jacob cheated,

He used a boat! That’s not the same!”

The king replied, “Dear Lucien,

There’s no need for such a fuss.

For receiving help from others

Is a gift, and it’s a must.”

Both brothers completed the first quest,

But Jacob finished first.

He grew a little confident,

But he still feared for the worst.

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