“Pliny had never had any objections about defying emperors.” Especially since most of the emperors in his house only ruled over rooms or cupboards. While Pliny got dressed for school the emperor of his closet would hold up his scepter and bellow, “I demand you pay taxes for entering my domain!” Pliny would just roll his eyes while the Emperor ordered his socks to attack him.
There was one emperor Pliny did fear, though, the emperor of the basement.
“He’s not that bad!” Pliny’s mom said one afternoon.
“He orders the mice to bite me and makes the furnace breath fire and he’s read all the National Geographics Dad put down there so he’s really smart!” Pliny whined.
“I am tired of your excuses, Pliney. Now, go downstairs and dust that basement!”
Before Pliney had even reached the bottom of the basement steps the emperor leapt out of the box of toys they kept in the corner “Who dares trespass?”
“It’s just me,” Pliney sighed. “My mom wants me to dust down here.”
The emperor pointed at the boy. “A spy! Who sent you?”
“I told you! My-.” He stopped, thought about his answer for a moment and then said, “The attic emperor sent me to spy on you. He’s thinking about declaring war and said you’re too stupid and fat to do anything about it!”
“We’ll see about that!” The emperor snarled and gathered his advisors together. Pliney dusted and listened to them plot. Then he went over to his friend’s house (which only had a prime minister of the garage).
When Pliney returned that evening he discovered that the sparrows and armies of old clothes from the attic were fighting the mice and baby toy armies from the basement. Alliances had been made so the bathroom navy was now involved along with the bed covers from the spare bedroom. By dinnertime it was a full out house war.
Pliney’s father groaned, “I have to wear the same tie to work tomorrow because the rest of mine were drafted.”
His mother complained, “We were going to have steak but my frying pan has been taken a political prisoner.”
His big sister grumbled, “The TV room’s developed nuclear capabilities and Brad’s coming over tonight!”
Pliney slumped in his chair, ate his green beans and thought about how much better things would be if his Mom hadn’t made him dust the basement.