The Wisdom of Fools
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The Wisdom of Fools Unknown author
The Wisdom of Fools Once upon a time, in a tiny village of farmers, there was a little boy known as Edward Longville. Edward lived next to a river from which he could fish every day until he got enough to bring back to his mother for dinner. On one such day, Edward heard frightened voices nearby, so he decided to investigate. Running up the steep slope to the cave where the voices were coming from, Edward saw that he had not been alone in hearing the voices. A slightly bemused looking crowd had gathered outside the cave, facing three men who with their backs to the cave entrance and their audience. Two of the men were bickering between each other, whilst the other was desperately but unsuccessfully trying to encourage the crowd behind him to enter the cave and face away from the cave entrance. "Please, villagers, come into the cave! Do not look outside!", said the first man, who Edward recognised as Coris, the slightly eccentric town seer. "It came to me in a vision! All who do not do as I say will perish! Please, come into the cave!" "What's that?", whispered one of the two bickering men to the other, nodding at the flickering shadows on the cave wall in front of them. "Oh my... it's them! Be gone, creatures of Phobos! We didn't mean to disturb you". "Quiet, stupid! Ask Coris". "You ask Coris".
"Hey, Coris?", whispered the first man. "I have foreseen this day! Please villagers, heed my words!", said Coris, ignoring his two companions. "Coris?" "You can't see the present through the beard of yours Coris, let alone see the future", sneered one of the villagers. "You must stay out of the light and not look into the valley, please come in here with us. Come to safety!" ignoring the villager. "Coris?!" whispered the first man once again, slightly louder. "WHAT?!", bellowed Coris angrily. "Is that... them?", the first man whispered, pointing to the shadows on the walls of the cave. "No you prat. That's the shadows of the people behind us leaving, now shut up!", and he continued to try to encourage the villagers into the cave, however none of them took any notice of him and they all trekked back to the village, grumbling about the seer and his crazy visions. "Look! There it goes again", said the first man, staring at another shadow on the cave wall in front of him. "Quiet you fool! Look how big it is!" "Shhhh!" "I came back... with my mother", said Edward with his rather pink faced mother panting beside him.
"Excellent boy", exclaimed Coris with delight. But then his face fell slightly. "It's a shame none of the other villagers could see the wisdom of this foolishness." "What is this about, Edward?", asked his mother crossly. "Mother... just sit here with me for a while... please" "Oh Edward this is nonsense" "Mother... please", and she looked into her son's eyes and saw the intensity of his expression. "I... OK, but you will be doing all the house work tomorrow if this is just a waste of time", she said angrily, glaring at the back of Coris' head as she sat down next to her son. After less than a minute of silence had passed in the cave, the rumble of a hundred nearby goblin drums rang out through the valley. Thousands of goblins leapt down the hills towards the village. But all missed the cave, and its five silent figures were safe.