A story from the past

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And so, we get to the third chapter, and finish it as well..

3

“As you know, your majesty, God has given King Solomon wisdom that no man before him was given. He knew the languages of the animals and the birds; he understood what the insects were saying and he ruled them all. One day, when he slept in his garden, a baby bee went to sit on the tip of his nose, and it tickled him so much with its legs that he woke up with a great sneeze and a in not too good a mood. The bee, that hadn’t recognized him before, was very frightened and told him that she mistook his nose for a flower, since it was as beautiful as one, and she will do whatever he wants of her, for his forgiveness.

King Solomon, who did not prolong his anger, asked her what does she think a small creature like herself could possibly do for him? the wisest amongst kings and men. And the bee answered that one of these days she will repay him for his kindness to her, and for not killing her. King Solomon laughed very much from her answer and set her free. The bee stayed and lived in King Solomon’s gardens.

The rumor of King Solomon’s wisdom traveled very far, and reached faraway kingdoms. It also reached the kingdom of Sheba. The queen of Sheba at that time was smarter and more beautiful then all of those who ruled there before her. When she heard about King Solomon’s wisdom, she decided to test him and see whether he is as smart as people were saying. She reached him after a long journey at sea, and when she came to the palace, she had with her thirty lovely girls, and in the hand of each of them there was a beautiful bouquet.

The queen of Sheba told King Solomon that only one of the bouquets was real, and the rest were man-made. She heard, she said to King Solomon, how wise he was and she wanted to see with her own eyes if that is true. King Solomon approached the girls and tried to discover which bouquet was the real one, but all the bouquets looked exactly the same. He couldn’t find the difference. He looked around him in despair, how can it be that this queen from a far away land will cause him such great embarrassment! Suddenly he saw the little bee, which had grown meanwhile, entering through the window. It flew between the bouquets without touching them, until she came to one of them and sat on it for a spell, and then she went out through the window again. King Solomon took a big breath of relief. He pointed at the bouquet the bee had sat on and said – this is the real one. The queen of Sheba, who didn’t see the bee, was very impressed with his wisdom and told him she sees the rumors that reached her were correct, and that she had many gifts that she had brought with her for him, if she discovers him as wise as the rumors claimed. King Solomon got her gifts and made this crown, which describes the test she has put him through, as a present to her before she left. If you will look at the crown in daylight you will see that one of the flowers has a tiny bee carved inside its gems. This bee has proven to him that even a small being like it can help a wise king like him.” Mee finished her story with a sigh. ‘She sighs again!’ thought Rhoda to herself, but this time without being too angry.

“But what is the crown doing here?” she asked.

“After the death of the queen of Sheba the crown was given to us, the demons, to safeguard.” answered Mee. “And when you became our ruler, this crown was given to you as well.”

Rhoda turned back. She asked Mee to take her to her room and give her the necklace. She wanted to be with something that truly belonged to her, while she lived in this foreign palace.

When they got to her room she took the necklace, looked at the pendant and told Mee “We will continue tomorrow. Now I want to be alone.”

“Does your majesty intend to sleep outside in the tent you have asked?” asked Mee hesitatingly.

“No! I shall sleep in my room tonight. The window needs to stay open, so as to let the fragrance of the jasmine get into the room and the tent can be left outside. I will decide what to do with it in the morning.” said Rhoda. It seemed to her that there is a chance she will be able to remember things if she will sleep with the known and elusive smell, to accompany her dreams. She decided it doesn’t matter how long she didn’t want to remember anything that happened to her, now she did want to remember and she will do whatever she can to help herself remember.

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