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Sir Sephiroth and the Witch's Trial.

Our tale begins on a warm midsummer day when the illustrious knights, Sir Sephiroth the Valiant and his companion, Sir Zachary the young-and-as-yet-undescribed were riding forth in search of anything to distract them from a quest of no bloody importance whatsoever.

"I still don't see why you had to eat my minstrels," Sir Zachary grumbled.

"I was hungry and they were off-key," Sir Sephiroth replied. "It's a good enough reason for anybody."

"Oh, fine," said Sir Zachary, "but what exactly am I supposed to do for entertainment now?"

"You could take up shrubbing. I hear it's a lucrative side-business."

"I can't very well grow shrubbery while we're on the road, Seph. Shrubbing's a stationary kind of thing."

Sir Sephiroth considered it sagely. "Well, there's questing."

"We're knights, Seph. We do that anyway. We're doing it now, in a manner of speaking."

"Well how about terrorizing the peasantry then? There's always a village somewhere that we can burn and maim and lord our knightly knighthood over the rabble."

Sir Zachary snorted. "That's your hobby, Seph. I'm looking for something a little more people-oriented."

"Suit yourself," Sir Sephiroth said with a shrug. "Just don't complain to me when you're dying of boredom. Shame, too. There's a little village right over there."

Sir Zachary looked ahead. There seemed to be some sort of commotion that was drawing the crowd to the village square. "Oh, hey, a rabble! Let's go look. And no burning this time!"

"Fine, fine."

And verily, in the village square, the unwashed crowd had gathered around a fair young maiden who was tied to a stake and struggling against the bonds with all of her frail and fading strength.

"A witch! A witch! A witch!" The cries went up.

"What's going on?" Sir Zachary inquired.

"We've got a witch," said one of the rabble, shaking his stick at her. "Can we burn her?"

"For the last time, you rotten jerks," said the fair and delicate maiden, whose given name was 'Aeris', "I'm not a goddamned witch!"

Sir Zachary gave the maid a good looking-over. "She doesn't look like a witch to me."

"Stop staring, Zack," Sir Sephiroth grumbled.

"Hey, you ate my minstrels! I've got to get my jollies somewhere!" Sir Zachary snapped. "Besides, we can't just let them burn a cute girl at the stake without any convincing evidence."

Sir Sephiroth uttered a sigh. Well he knew that Sir Zachary was an upstanding young knight in all manner of situations, particularly when a fair maiden was involved. He turned to the crowd. "All right, then, how do you know she's a witch?"

There was a moment of silence while the rabble fidgeted. Then a voice piped up midst the crowd. "She turned me into a girl!"

All the crowd gathered there turned to see a young person with hair like a burst of sunshine and eyes like unto the blue of a cloudless sky. This unusual young person was clad in fine raiment, a deep violet gown of purest silk and a diamond circlet, as befitting a young lady of gentle breeding. However, this person, while possessing a certain delicacy of feature, also bore a definable strength of limb and those curves that should have been soft and gracefully feminine were almost like… muscles.

The speaker appeared to grow a little nervous upon noticing that many eyes upon his/her person and ventured a timid explanation. "I got better."

Sir Sephiroth blinked. "Are you sure?"

"That settles it," said one flame-haired youth among the rabble. "She's a witch! Burn her!"

"Witch! Witch!"

"Hold up!" Sir Zachary held up a hand, never one to be daunted in the face of a nearly-lost cause. "There's ways of telling if she's really a witch or not."

"How, Sir?" asked the stick-wielding man.

Sir Sephiroth rubbed his forehead. "What now, Zack? Are you going to see if she weighs as much as a duck?"

"Oh, the old duck test," someone in the crowd said. "Of course!"

"You really think it's possible for a girl to weigh the same as a duck?"

"Maybe a really fat duck…Well, look at her! She's not very big."

"The best thing to do," Sir Zachary cut in, "would be to weigh her and see. Has anyone got a scale and a duck I could borrow?"

"I don't have a scale," said the man with the stick, "But I know how to get my hands on one."

And I've got a good duck waiting for me at home," said the scarlet-haired youth. "What?"

The rabble began to disperse, evidently intent on gathering all the required apparatus. Sir Sephiroth was not pleased. Since he had already sworn not to torch the place, he was finding the whole thing rather dull, so he set about putting a quick end to the matter.

"Look," he said, "We don't need any ducks and scales. I'll tell you right now whether she's a witch or not!" With that, the gallant Sir Sephiroth rent the woman's dress in twain and grabbed hold of the fruits of her bosom.

"What the hell do you think you're doing?" the delicate maiden screamed (in a delicate and maidenly way, of course).

"Oh, just hush a moment, will you?" Sir Sephiroth squeezed and circled, making sure to get a good feel of things. After a few minutes of lengthy deliberation, he turned his head back to the crowd, cleared his throat and declared. "She's not a witch."


"How's that possible?"

"You sure?"

Sir Sephiroth nodded. "A witch's tit, as everyone knows, is bitterly cold. And these," here he hefted the woman's bosom, "are as warm a pair of breasts as I've ever felt."

"Are they really?"

"Can I check?"

"No!" Aeris shrieked. "You keep your hands off of these. They're private property. Why don't you go trespassing on those tracts of land instead. They're much bigger." She jerked her head in the direction of the local tavern wench. While the rabble was distracted, Aeris glared up the knight. "Now look what you've done! From now on, everybody's going to want to cop a feel under the pretence of verifying that I'm not a witch."

Sir Sephiroth seemed unaffected. "I'd think you should be thanking me for saving you from being burned at the stake. The crisis is averted now, isn't it?"

"It damn well is, so quit groping my boobs already!"

Before Sir Sephiroth could make any sort of reply, the rabble began to press close again, no few of their number now bandaged and bleeding. Curiously enough, the well-endowed tavern wench seemed quite proud of herself.

"We've got to thinking, Sir," said one of the crowd. "And we're going to need a little more evidence to be sure."

"It's not that we doubt your word, good Sir, but the results of any scientific inquiry aren't valid if they aren't repeatable, are they?"

"Yes," came another voice. "If it's just you, well, what's warm to you might be positively frigid to somebody else. We've got no idea what temperature of tit you consider normal.

"Essentially, Sir," the man with the stick said, "the whole thing relies on you having a good idea of what average is and to have any accurate idea of that, you'd have to have experience with a fairly large sample. If you don't mind me asking, just how much bosom have you groped?"

"Not a whole lot, I figure," Aeris muttered.

"We've got to have it verified," said the redhead. "At least one other."

"I suppose so," Sir Sephiroth agreed, hefting the weight of a breast in each hand, "but the lady's being quite fussy about this."

"I wouldn't be fussing if you'd let go already! And quit bouncing 'em!"

Sir Zachary cleared his throat. "How about if I check, then? I've felt a fair number of mammaries in my day."

"Of course, Sir," said the stick-wielder, "if the word of one noble knight is not enough, surely the word of two should suffice."

Sir Sephiroth graciously moved aside to give his companion some space. "Here, try the right one."

Zack took hold of the woman's right breast. "Well, hello there, love."

"Don't you try to sweet talk me, Mister."

"Can't blame a guy for trying, can you? Well, at any rate, that's really warm." He turned back to the rabble. "She's no witch. If I know breasts, and I do, it's a fine tit, warm as any."

And with that affirmation, the crowd had no choice but to concede that the whole thing had been a bloody mix-up and that they would have to let the fair maiden go. Upon her release, the maid Aeris, fed up to the gills with rabbles and wenches and ambiguously gendered fools, left the village with her gallant rescuers. Unbeknownst to all, however, the Maid Aeris, while not a witch, was something not far from it and once she had both our brave knights away from the crowd she promptly turned them both into newts to teach them a lesson.

Fortunately for our brave knights, they eventually got better, as the magickally newtified are wont to do. The young not-exactly-a-witch Aeris had a lengthy discussion with the suitably chastened knights and after a period of intense negotiation, both men agreed that if they ever felt like grabbing her breasts again, they would only do it in private.

And there was much rejoicing.