The Kingdom of Orr – 5/5
King Netham was the first king of Orr to dwell inside a castle. All his forefathers had dwelt among the people in large courtyards in the central region of Okaro. They advised and judged the people of Orr, and never turned away anyone who came to them. They dwelt peacefully with the people and the people honoured the kings’ household with the first-fruits of their labour. However, king Netham feared the immigrants who dwelt in his kingdom and the ancient prophesy of Prophet Faibius was fulfilled.
‘In the field of Lilanie, shall the fearful kings of Orr dwell,
They shall enclose themselves in fortified walls,
And surround themselves with a gold embellished shell,
To cover the shame of their cowardly galls…’
King Netham lived in the Marvelous Castle for twelve years, until his death at the age of eighty-one. He gave Prince Onan the crown on his eightieth birthday and held the most sumptuous celebration in history. The king gave away a loaf of bread, a whole chicken, and a gold coin to every male citizen of Orr aged eighteen and over. The gold coin had king Netham’s head engraved on one side and king Onan’s head on the other, as a commemoration.
When the time drew near for King Netham to depart from the earth, he was very weak and sickly. He called his son Onan to his side and confessed the deepest thoughts of his heart. He caressed his son’s face affectionately as a mother would her newborn babe. “My son, my King! Please forgive me for not bowing down to you, for your father is too old and frail to get up from his bed.” He spoke slowly and his voice quivered because of old age. “Please listen to your foolish father’s voice one more time. I have not been wise for most of my life, and I wish to impart to you some wisdom on my death bed.”
King Onan sat at the edge of his father’s bed and held his gnarled hands tenderly. “Father, please speak. It is your son’s duty to hear and obey your voice.”
“After so many years of prosperity and good health, now, on my death bed, I have finally come to my senses. This Marvelous Castle may have shielded us from rain and foul weather, but it has not for a single moment taken away the fear that was in my heart. Even now as I speak, my heart trembles with fear. I should have listened to your voice, my son. You were wise beyond your years, and above all, you have always had the fear of God in your heart. You have done so much good for our kingdom, but I have only angered the departed souls of our fathers, and God. Alas, what disasters have I brought upon us all!”
King Netham’s frail hands held onto his son’s hands with the little strength he had left, tears trickled down his wrinkled cheeks from his failing eyes. “Listen to my words for one last time, so that you may save your life and the people of Orr. You must now pray earnestly to God for the salvation of our people. Put fences around our kingdom to mark the land which belong to us. Place guards in all the watch towers of the castle and increase its security and guard it with all diligence. Not one soul is to leave or enter the gates of the castle without your command. Teach your children, the future kings of Orr, to avoid wars at all costs. Perhaps it may not be too late to alter the curse of our kingdom, that God may turn back His anger and have compassion on us. Pass on the teachings of the Prophet Faibius to all your children, and instruct them to wait faithfully for a Saviour. Please, please forgive me.”
King Onan’s heart ached as he watched his father’s frail body shake with coughing. He caressed his father’s hands and answered softly, “Father, my father, what right have I to judge your actions? Please do not be so regretful of all that you have done. Prophesies are the will of God, and no man on earth can convince Him to change His mind. I will continue to obey the commandments of God and teach our children and our people to do the same.” He put up his right hand and vowed, “Father, I swear to you that I shall do all that you have commanded me this day. I will also see to it that your name be remembered as one of the greatest kings of Orr in our kingdom. I beseech you to make peace with yourself and with God, for I cannot bear to see you suffer like this.”
“Yes, I must make peace with God. You’re a wise King, my son.” King Netham’s last breath took with it all the agony and fear in his face and left a smile in their place. Thus, king Netham passed away on his death bed, in the care of his faithful son.
King Onan proclaimed a lamentation for thirty days throughout the kingdom of Orr, for the passing of a great king. Many foreign kings from the surrounding kingdoms came to pay their respect.