The wicked king summoned the best sculptor in his realm and ordered:
“Fashion a bull of bronze in order that mine enemies might be stuffed into said bull and roasted alive in the public square, roaring out their terrible agonies for all to hear and fear. That is my wish, and that is my command. Now be swift about it.”
And the sculptor was indeed swift about it, and the wicked king was so impressed that rather than wait for someone to displease him so he could have that unfortunate wretch be the first victim, he merely ordered his henchmen to stuff the sculptor into his creation “in order that we might have the pleasure of your roaring.”
The poor sculptor, who was merely trying to make a living under difficult circumstances, resisted the efforts of the henchmen to stuff him into his terribly beautiful creation, but he could not.
The wicked king had his lackeys and bootjacks pile wood under the bull, and then he personally set the wood alight. Settling back on his throne, he ordered the assembled multitude to enjoy the spectacle.
The wicked king certainly did, because he was a cruel and capricious ruler who had only won his title by dint of his royal birth. But his subjects, long accustomed to being beaten and oppressed, attended to the sculptor’s screaming death in sullen silence.
This maddened the wicked king to such a screaming fury that he rose from his throne and attempted to strangle his closest subject.
A fatal mistake because the wicked king chose as his first victim the rather formidable wife of the village blacksmith.
“Laugh,” the wicked king ordered, trying to get his scrawny hands around her stout neck.
The blacksmith’s wife fought back, as did her husband and as did the whole, entire assembled multitude, including the lackeys and bootjacks who had had quite enough of the wicked king and his evil ways.
They seized their wicked king as one and rushed him to the still sizzling bull.
“Ah,” the wicked king thought, “I am to be made a god.”
For the wicked king neither feared fire nor confinement in small, sizzling spaces.
But he was more than fearful when he realized that his maddened subjects were carrying him far beyond the smoking bull to the edge of the village where stood a great cliff overlooking a wild and great, wintry sea that was the sure and certain home of dragons.
Without a second’s hesitation, the oppressed subjects flung their frantically flailing oppressor into the waves far below and then watched with sure and certain satisfaction as he sank screaming and crying beneath the waves.
Alas, he knew not how to swim.
But, just to be sure, the blacksmith ran back to the village square, fetched the bull with his heat-resistant hands, dragged it to the edge of the cliff and tossed it down upon the floundering tyrant.
And then the dragons got him!