Yaqub despised being called “The Little Prince.” His older brother was the one still called by the child’s name, Razi. It was Yaqub who was taller. It was Yaqub that was more athletic. Yaqub was cunning, and a leader of men, but Razuli had been the heir.
But for how long? It would take some doing, but it would be done. It had to be done.
The Little Prince was inpatient. But first things first. There needed to be a fall guy. The Chamberlain seemed the obvious candidate. The head of the Guard was too much a sycophant to be accused of assassinating the monarch, but the wily Ali Mamode with his clear political ambitions, he was a believable patsy.
Now that that was settled, how to carry out the deed and yet be far enough away to avoid being suspected himself? A fall? No that wouldn’t do. It was too similar to how he had assassinated his father. Poison? Yes, that seemed a good approach. It would need to be a rare one, however, hard to trace and harder to cure. Something natural. Yes, that was it. Snake venom? No, how would a snake be found in the new Sultan’s chambers? What would be believable? A spider? Yes, perfect.
Now how to get a spider into his rooms. One a dinner tray? No, the servant might spot it. Among his laundry? No, there is no way to assure the creature would bite Razi and not someone else – or even bite at all.
No, a jab would do. Place it on his fork, or maybe . . .? That won’t do. The food tasters might succumb first.
His pens! His imbecile of a brother always licked his pen nibs. All Yaqub needed to do was place the poison on the nibs when his brother was preoccupied, and then leave. Then hide the poison in the Chamberlain’s chambers, and be sure to be seen at some official event outside the palace when the Sultan fell ill.
Oh, the simple plans were always the best. He smiled and stretched before ringing the little bell beside his cushioned chair. A servant quickly responded.
“Wine,” The Little Prince commanded. “One from the Sultan’s cellars!”
(369 words, 29 minutes)