The King is Dead (Part 3)

Hello!  The final part is finally here!  Is everyone excited?  If you have missed the past 2 parts, you have a bit of catching up to do.  Click here for part one and click here for part 2.  Come back here when you are done!

Now for the grand finale of The King is Dead!  This story is in the Paranormal category.  Thanks for stopping by and reading the story and enjoy!

The King is Dead (Part 3)

“Now don’t be mad at me King Stratford, but I figured out what the book says.  But I don’t know what it means. Maybe you can help me.”

Stratford shrugged.  Maybe…it depends on what you found.

Jonah cleared his throat.  “Okay…so…here it is. Plant the seed in the garden.  The bird will fly and take the seed. Do not let the robin take the seed.  The jay must take it. The jay will enjoy and eat the seed but the night will not last long.  The seed is poison for the jay. The kingdom is ours once the sun rises.”

Stratford stood in the middle of the room slackjaw.  How did Jonah figure this out? Stratford knew exactly what happened.  He knew who killed him. He raced into the kitchen and started banging the pots and pans about.  He found a small portrait of a man and immediately let out a scream.

He felt the rage fill his ghostly body.  Jonah came running into the kitchen, covering his face with his hands.  Pots and pans were flying around the room and the portrait sat in the middle of the counter.  Jonah made his way to the portrait and picked it up. There was a picture of a man who had a robin and a jay on his shoulder.  Jonah held the photo up. “King Stratford! This doesn’t prove anything! This is just a picture of a man with a jay and a robin.  I don’t know who this is!”

The pots and pans fell onto the floor.  Stratford flew over to Jonah and stood in front of him.  “This is Charles. The chef. He killed me.”

Jonah took a step back and put his hands in the air.  “King Stratford sir. I know this isn’t the answer you want to hear, but this doesn’t prove anything.  All we have is the thing from the book and this portrait. I hate to break it to you like that.”

Stratford huffed and sat on the counter.  Maybe Jonah wasn’t a good person after all.  If he was a good guy, he would believe Stratford.  He sat on the counter with both his arms and legs crossed.  He felt like he had figured it out, or actually Jonah had figured it out, but he thought he was close.

Jonah sat on the edge of the counter, mere inches away from Stratford’s ghostly body.  He let out a sigh. “King Stratford. I know you are upset. I would be too. To come this close but still not know anything, it sucks.  Honestly it does. But I can take this info and see if I can find a historian who can help me. I don’t know how much information you can give me, but I also don’t know why a historian would help me with little to no information.  If there was anything you could give me that might help, that would be great.”

“Charles.”

Jonah turned and look at Stratford, almost exactly in his eyes.  “Charles? Charles who?” He looked down at the portrait that he found.  “Is this Charles?”

“Yes.”

Jonah nodded.  “Okay. I will take all the information I have and go to a historian and see if they could help me.  Maybe if I can tell you what happened, you will be able to leave this place. But I can’t guarantee anything.  It’s just a thought.”

Stratford got up and left the room.  He was mad. No, he was more than mad.  He was furious. This kid was saying that he couldn’t do anything.  But he had promised that he would get Stratford out of this castle. And now he was going back on his word.  He sat in front of the cheating suit of armor and pouted. “This isn’t fair. The kid said he would help me and now he says he can’t. I don’t know what to do.”

“King Stratford?”  He turned around to see Jonah walk into the hallway.  “I know you’re upset and I’m sorry. But I’m going to leave.  I need to do some research on Charles to see if I can find any information on him.  I’m so sorry that I couldn’t bring you good news tonight sir. I will be on my way.”  Jonah walked through Stratford, who was still pouting on the floor. He made his way into the throne room and out the front doors.  

Stratford was still pouting when he heard the engine of Jonah’s car start up and wheels drive out onto the road.  He didn’t say goodbye, but he didn’t feel like it was necessary to do so. He was still mad and he wouldn’t be happy until Jonah found some new information.

 

————————————————————————————————————————-

 

The sun was going down over the western horizon.  Stratford sat on the roof of the castle, watching the sun set yet again.  It had been 4 sun sets since Jonah had been there. It was typical. People promised him that they would figure out what happened to him and never actually did.  He didn’t know why he actually trusted Jonah.

He scoffed.  “Typical kid.  Make tons of promises and not keep any of them.  I don’t know why I trusted him. I don’t know why I gave him the information to help him.  He ran away with it and hasn’t returned. Dumb. I was so dumb.”

The sun went down over the horizon and the world slowly became dark.  Stratford continued to sit on the roof, watching the stars start to come out.  He found all of his favorite constellations quickly, he tried to find them every night when he was on the roof.  It wasn’t hard to find them anymore. The moon was full, shining a bright light over the entire castle.

A car came around the bend of the road.  Stratford stood up. Was that Jonah? Was he actually going to be bringing good news this time?  Stratford flew through the roof, through every floor of the castle down to the throne room. He sat on his overturned throne and waited to see who was here to see to visit him.

The door slowly opened and Jonah poked his head inside.  “Hello? King Stratford? It’s me, Jonah. I brought you good news.”  He walked over to the throne and turned it rightside up. He stepped down the small steps and sat on the floor.  “I thought you would want your throne turned correctly to sit in one last time. I promise, this will be your last night in this castle.  Are you ready?”

Stratford stood next to his throne, confused.  Was this actually going to be his last time in the castle?  Was he actually going to get the answer he has been hoping to get for over 500 years?  Should he trust Jonah?

He straightened his robe and crown before sitting down in his throne.  It felt good to sit in it properly. He couldn’t remember the last time he properly sat in it.  It had been overturned for so long that he always just sat on the side of it. He felt proud, like he was actually king again.  He settled into the throne and took a deep breath.

“Yes.”

Jonah cleared his throat and opened the notebook that he brought.  “Okay. So here we go. I spoke with a historian who studied the time you were alive.  She looked at everything we had and took some time to look into it. It took her two days to decipher everything and tell me what happened.  So, this picture is in fact your chef Charles the Grey. Now, I know what you are thinking. He wasn’t Charles the Grey when he was your chef.  Well…Charles married your lady after you died and took over her kingdom. Sorry…”

He paused for a second to let Stratford take all the information in.  He continued. “So Charles was known for not being that great of a King in the other kingdom.  He tried to fight with every other kingdom around. He had multiple children with multiple women.  Some historians think he might have even been in a relationship with a man at one point. Either way, that’s besides the point.  But, he was known for poisoning people that he wasn’t a fan of to get them out of his way.”

Stratford stood up in rage.  “That fool!”

Jonah put his hands in the air.  “Calm down sir, I know you are angry, but please let me continue.”  Stratford angrily sat down in the throne again. “The historian found a document that actually contained what Charles used as a poison.  For some reason, historians found the recipe and kept it. So…” He paused for a moment. “I’ll get back to that after the poem.

“Ugh….”

“I’m sorry sir, but I want to give you all the information first.”  He pulled out the book he took and found the poem in. “I asked the historian about the book and if it meant anything.  She said that Charles called his wife, your lady, a robin. He called her that because of her red hair. He referred to you as a jay because you were the king of a water kingdom.  You know, your colors are blue, like a jay. Anyway. We still don’t know who Charles was writing to or leaving a message for, but we can definitely say that Charles was the main part of this.  So the seed in the message was the poison. The garden was whatever you ate. Do you remember what you had for dinner that night?”

“No…I don’t.”

Jonah nodded.  “That’s okay. I understand.  It has been over 500 years hasn’t it.”  Jonah laughed. “Okay…so the garden was your dinner.  So Charles put the poison in your dinner, but made sure your lady didn’t eat it.  Since the message said the seed is for you, you and your lady probably ate two different things for dinner.  Does all of this make sense?”

“Yes…I want the truth.”

“Okay…” Jonah closed everything and look straight at Stratford.  “So the historian compared the recipe we found with the recipe that they had for Charles.  And…it was exactly the same. So we can confirm that Charles the Grey killed you by poison to your food just so he could be with your lady.  I’m so sorry King Stratford.”

Stratford felt the rage fill his body again.  But there was something else. Relief. He felt a sense of relief that he finally knew the truth.  He let out a blood curdling scream, as scream that could not be replicated by anyone dead or alive.  His ghostly body started spinning, a strange feeling for someone who only floated. The wind picked up causing a whirlwind in the throne room, blowing all of Jonah’s belongings around the room.  The doors flew open as the whirlwind passed through them.

Stratford felt something rip out of his chest as he flew out of the castle.  He flew straight up into the sky, passing through every floor and the roof before getting to the sky.  He was out of the castle and into the clouds. When he finally stopped he realized what happened.

He was free.  Jonah did it. Jonah was true to his word and got him out of the castle.  Stratford didn’t know what he could do to thank him. Now he was in the clouds and Jonah was on the ground.  And he didn’t ever have to wonder what happened to him when he died. Now Stratford had his answers and he could live in the afterlife in peace.  “Thank you Jonah. I will never be able to repay you for what you did.”

Stratford wasn’t sure if Jonah could hear him or not.  But what he did know was that he was finally free. Free to do whatever he wished.  He didn’t have to play games with the suits of armor or the rabbits. He was able to see all the wonders of the world.  He was able to fly anywhere and everywhere.

No more castle.  No more being stuck in one place.  More time being free.

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