King Zaloba was not always a king. There was once a time when he was but a nobleman's son in the peaceful town of Zanzibox. His days were filled with the sweet taste of grapes and the sweet song that wafted down from the castle of their ever peaceful king.
It was on a particularly carefree, cloudless day that the royal messenger entered the abode of young Zaloba.
"Eh-hem." he cleared his throat. Zaloba looked up from the hammock he was lounging in. "By the decree of King Box all young men between ages seventeen and thirty-six are to report to the castle barracks for immediate assignment within the Zanzibox military. The reason for this assignment is that an imminent threat... threatens the sovereign land under our Lord Willdog." the messenger said in one breath.
Zaloba sat up fully and swung his legs over the side of the hammock. "Assigned? Says who?" he asked.
The messenger stared at him, "The Box says." he said, he blinked and then repeated himself, "The Box says... The Box." the messenger shook his head as if clearing it and then turned and left the house.
"What a-" a screech sounded from outside, cutting off Zaloba before he could say just what the messenger was. A white owl suddenly swooped through the window of Zaloba's house and landed on his arm, issuing another screech as it did so.
"What's up Hedwig?" Zaloba asked his owl and companion.
Hedwig cocked her head to one side and screeched at him again. Zaloba shook his head and with a last look around departed his home.
After that fateful day, Zaloba's life was never the same again. His time was divided between fighting, chilling, advising the king, and chasing fine maidens. Throughout the war effort against Elias's forces Zaloba's suggestions to the king proved to be invaluable, and thanks to his cunning the city of Zanzibox never fell to the forces of Elias. By the war's end Zaloba had grown to be the King's top advisor, the de facto second in command to the King himself.
It was on an overcast autumn day when the King called Zaloba into his study for a private conversation.
"My King." Zaloba said, inclining his head slightly towards King Box.
The King looked up from the stack of papers he had been reading. "Ah yes, come in Zaloba." he said, "I've been expecting you."
Zaloba paused at that, "...Maybe it's because you sent me an invitation to come here?" he said.
"Yes, perhaps, perhaps indeed. So why do you think I asked you to come?" he said offering Zaloba a cup of coffee.
Zaloba took the cup in hand and sipped slowly before saying, "Well I think-"
"IT DOESN'T MATTER WHY YOU THINK I ASKED YOU TO COME!" King Box bellowed, "The reason I wanted you to come is to inform you of my future plans." he said calmly.
Zaloba looked at the king, and when no further explanation came he leaned forward and asked plainly, "Err, what future plans are those?"
"I thought you'd never ask!" the king said with a chuckle, "Well Zaloba, I wish to become a mage." he said, his beady eyes never darting from Zaloba's.
"A mage? And why do you see fit to tell me that?" Zaloba asked.
"Because..." the king said, his voice little more than a whisper, "I wish to become a mage... of .wav." he said and then sat back in his chair.
Waves of shock rolled over Zaloba like steamrollers, a .wav mage would require a year-long pilgrimage into the forest near Zanzibox, a pilgrimage that few came back from, and that none had come back from alive.
"But, King Box, you can become a powerful mage of the .mp3 profession whilst remaining in Zanzibox!" Zaloba protested.
"It wouldn't be the same." The Box said, his eyes alight, ".wav magic is uncompressed, the power enormous." he breathed.
Zaloba stood suddenly, his coffee spilling to the floor, leaving a stain in the ruby red carpet. "King Box, if you wish to become a .wav mage I won't stop you." he said in a huff, "But I will have no part in it." he said and with that left the room.
It took several weeks of coaxing, present giving, apology asking, and chilling before Zaloba finally accepted that King Box was going to become a .wav mage. The King was to meet with Zaloba on the outskirts of the forest on the fifth day of the eleventh month to wish him farewell.
It was on a snowy day that the two of them met on the edge of the forest.
The Box shook Zaloba's hand firmly. "My king," Zaloba said, "if you require assistance of any kind whilst on your pilgrimage..." he began, but the king waved him off.
"Zaloba," he said, his upper lip drawn back, giving him the look of an overgrown rabbit, "this is something I have to do on my own, the pilgrimage for .wav magic must be completed without assistance." The Box looked Zaloba in the eye, "But what you can do, is keep our city safe. Take my crown as your own, and watch over the people until my return, and if I am not to return..." the king paused and wiped an eye before continuing, "then your reign shall become permanent." he said. The Box removed his crown and placed it on Zaloba's head. "As with every ruler before you, the town is now yours to rename, choose wisely." The Box told him.
Zaloba raised his head and seemed to consider carefully before speaking. "Henceforth, Zanzibox shall be known as... Alonzo." Zaloba proclaimed.
The Box regarded him, and then said, "A fine name, for a fine city, under a fine king..." he once again paused, "Goodbye my old friend." he said at last.
With that the Box turned and walked into the forest, and soon he was swallowed in the darkness cast by the shadows of the trees.
King Zaloba stood alone gazing into the forest, he turned and headed back to his city as snowflakes began to fall from the heavens.
End Zaloba's Tale.