Once, many years ago, a king from a distant land sent four of his subjects to explore a mysterious world beyond the horizon. He told them to use separate ships and make separate journeys, for he knew that they would not all get along. And so, the four all set out on different ships and different crews in search of this new world.
The first to reach the shore was the king’s most trusted advisor, a man who knew how to lead. Logical and loyal to the king, he knew that the new land would best serve as a military garrison and new city of the expanding empire, which could serve as a safety net should the capital be overrun.
The second to find this paradise was the king’s leading scientist, who and documented the stars on the way and had added the new continent to his maps before deciding to dock the ship. He was intelligent and ambitious, immediately making a plan to dedicate the continent to scientific research and furthering the knowledge of the kingdom.
The third to dock his ship was the king’s blacksmith, who fashioned swords and shields and created wondrous structures with fire and metal. He had brought his only family, his two daughters, with him to show them this beautiful new world. While exploring, the daughters discovered deep mines filled with different jewels and rivers of precious metals. The blacksmith was overjoyed, for he could continue his business and create new currency and beautiful objects for the kingdom.
The fourth to find the new land was the king’s favourite artist, who never once used a map or compass to guide him. He simply relied on his heart. He would stand at the bow of the ship, listen to his instincts, and point in the direction of where he thought there would be land. He fell in love with the beauty of the island, when he finally arrived, and envisioned it as a vacation spot for the kingdom; a place to admire the beauty of the natural world and soothe the soul. He imagined bringing his wife to this place, although its beauty could never rival her own.
Of course, when the four met in the middle of the continent, they immediately fought over what the land should be used for. Unable to compromise, they decided to play cards that night before sailing back in the morning.
“We still haven’t named this place,” The scientist offered, “Perhaps that can be a start. We can think of the purpose later.”
The advisor shot him a look, having never liked the scientist.
“How about the Card Continent?” The artist suggested, “I mean, we all agreed to play cards.”
The blacksmith looked to his daughters, who were looking over the jewels they had found in the caves. “That is a good name. But this land is far too large to house just one city.”
“We will split it into four, then,” The advisor decided, “One for each of us to do with as we please. In the centre, where we are now, will be the capital.”
The others nodded in agreement.
They returned to the king with their proposition, although all four of them would much rather have the continent to themselves, and travelled back to the new continent to begin constructing their kingdoms. All four made their kingdoms into what they initially wanted them to be; a garrison, a research community, a mining faction, and a natural paradise.
In honour of the card game they played, each explorer named their kingdom after a card suit. The advisor named his the Spade Kingdom, to stress the value of challenge and strategy. The scientist named his the Club Kingdom, to pay tribute to intelligence and action. The blacksmith named his the Diamond Kingdom, to note the virtue in wealth and beauty. Finally, the artist named his the Heart Kingdom, in honour of empathy and love.
These four kingdoms, as well as the capital, lived in peace for many years.
Eventually, many generations later, a new princess was born into the Heart Kingdom. She was Princess _____, a beautiful girl who loved to paint and admire flowers in the garden. Soon she would reign over her kingdom, and she would serve her people well.
The queen looked up from the story book to see her daughter sound asleep. The queen smiled, brushing hair away from her daughter’s eyes and kissing her forehead. She stood, blowing out the candles in the room, “Sweet dreams, my dear.” The queen whispered before she closed the door and continued down the hall.
The queen was never seen again.
♦ It’s time for a change of scenery, but the circumstances aren’t what you hoped they would be. The wellbeing of your kingdom rests solely on how quickly you find a husband, but that’s proving to be more and more difficult. ♦