Operation Shah Mat; the fourth faze

Nottingham Castle

 

Sir Walter re-entered the castle with five guards. Because it was not customary to talk with your guards, especially in public, Sir Walter walked in silence.
Arriving in the middle of the castle Sir Walter stopped. Telling his guards to wait for him, he knocked on a door.
“Who goes there?” A muffled voice answered the knock.
“Sir Walter of Surrey.”
“You may enter.” The door opened and Sir Walter walked inside the dimly lit room.

The room did not have any name, partly because of the treason that was planned there. The room was circular and in the middle a magnificent round table, which had a three dimensional map of the conquered world on it, was set with torches at regular intervals around the edge. Set into the walls were large chairs. Into one of these Sir Walter eased himself. Slowly the chairs were filled and the doors banged shut. Up, out of one of the chairs, stood the Sheriff. There he was, arms raised, in a single shaft of light. Then he launched into a well rehearsed speech.

“Good news! King Richard has been forced back…” Here he stopped and brought his arms across his chest.

“This may mean that King Richard will return to England…as a defeated Crusader. Because Nottingham Castle is the centre of activity at present the broken King Richard will most likely lay siege to the castle. We, therefore, need to build up our defenses so that the throne will most certainly go to Prince John. And so, to come to my point, I have devised a way to get rid of the poorest citizens and build our defenses at the same time. We will fill the moat.” 

When the meeting was over the Sheriff sat back down in his chair. Someone knocked on the door and demanded, “I need to speak to the Sheriff.”

Recognizing that the voice belonged to the guard he had told to take care of the delivery of grain, the Sheriff said to the Black Knights, “You may all leave.” Turning to the guard, who had entered the room the Sheriff asked, “What now?”
“Sir, the cart, there is no grain, anywhere.”
“Well? What have you done with the cart?”
“Why, I left it where it was. The owner will undoubtedly come back; he owns a fine team of horses.”
“Confiscate them!”


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