Taste of Death

Genre: Historical Fiction

Plot: A queen’s taste-tester who is immune to poison.

Words to use: sacrifice, food, lie, deadly, bite, assassination, plot, royalty, revolution, spy, weapon, conspiracy, venom, choke, fear

The queen’s visit to her summer home was anticipated by all those who served her. The staff was busying themselves for weeks, making sure everything was just as she liked it. It wasn’t just for amusement though. She struck fear in the hearts of all those who served her because of her ill temper and sadistic ways of punishing those who displeased her majesty. The ways of royalty were rarely questioned publicly but hatred dwelled in the hearts of those of low status.

The queens behavior, accepted for a while, reached a crescendo with the most recent punishment for another conspiracy that came to light. The secret of a plot to assassinate the queen was only soft whispers between trusted confidantes. 

During a particularly restless time in her country, it was suggested that she find a food tester to make sure that her enemies could not kill her with poison introduced into her meals. It was suggested as the result of a particular rumor of having the queen killed by poison. Her closest advisor made a suggestion of someone whom he would trust with this job. Someone he knew that would make that sacrifice for the queen because of his absolute devotion to the queen. It would be a sacrifice indeed because if the rumor was true, it would make their job very dangerous. 

“Have you found me a food taster?” The queen asked her advisor. 

“Yes, ma’am.  A man above reproach and suspicion. A true loyal servant of your majesty.” He replied.

“Oh, very well.” She was concerned at all times about her well-being and this newest rumored plot had caused her great distress. 

“There is no weapon that can be used successfully against you, majesty.”

“I am not afraid of those traitors. They are fighting there divine one. They will not prevail.” She said determinedly. “They know the risks of revolutionif that was to happen. Their deadly schemes can’t be overlooked, even to the smallest degree. No spy will go undiscovered and unpunished!” She raised her voice in defiance. The heavy burdens of ruling of subjects made those who came before her was ever on her mind. Her father was too soft she thought. He allowed the venom of weakness to overshadow his rule. She wasn’t going to have that in her kingdom. The lie of benevolence was not on her lips. She knew that her rule was to last through fear. They were to respect her or else pay the consequences. 

As time wore on, the threat of assassination abated and there was calm in the kingdom. The taste tester was found by her a trustworthy and honorable man. A true gentleman of the realm. He would always take the first bite and drink to test. She felt at ease with each banquet, relying on all those who were trusted to protect her from danger. Until the last…choke…she gasped for breath. All those attending looked toward their queen and watched in horror as she tried to breathe, unsuccessfully. The last thing she saw was her trusted taste-tester. She knew that she was betrayed. His smug smirk gave his feelings away at the moment as she was no more. It was finally done. 

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