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  1. Princess Zerpine and the Magic Ledger It was a busy day in the Crypto Valley, a place so big that the sun never sets over. A little princess with a black and white dress was walking timidly through a bridge; she was lost and scared while thousands of numbers were flying frantically by her side. The child was trying to get through them when suddenly; one of the numbers accidentally pushed the girl out of the bridge and threw her into the river. The frightened princess started to swim, but, fortunately for her, an eccentric robot with one big turquoise eye was walking along the riverbank. She was quickly rescued by him as soon as he saw her. —Thank you for saving me— said the little girl, the robot just looked at her intrigued— You must be princess Zerpine, what are you doing here alone? —replied the machine with genuine curiosity. —Well, my father send me into a mission, I have to find the code to open this magic key— answered the child pointing at a USB hanging from his neck as if it were a necklace— but I don’t even know where to start— the princess then observed the robot from head to foot— and by the way, who are you? —asked the girl. —Forgive my manners— replied the robot—I am Codius, and I am really smart—said very proud of himself. — Codius? That’s a silly name—the princess laughed. Codius just rolled his only eye in sign of disapproval, then, he changed the topic to hide his hassle. — I can help you with your problem, little princess, let’s make a contract, that’s what I do— proposed the machine. —A contract? How is that? — Well, yesterday, a page of the XRP magic ledger was stolen and now the nodes are stuck, because of that, millions of humans cannot longer send numbers to their loved ones. That’s why the good people of the XRP kingdom entrust me the task of retrieving the page as soon as possible, but if you help me to in my quest, I will help you to find your code, deal? —That’s terrible! —The princess shouted. She tough it for a moment, and then, gave her resolution: —Deal—. Suddenly, a mystic white light shined around her accompanied by strange electric sounds and after that, she was teleported through a magic wormhole and appeared in front of a big castle. Two bulls with an anthropomorphic body, guardians of the palace’s doors, looked at her amazed. The humanoids were wearing medieval armor; they were carrying big shields painted with a bull coat of arms. The three of them looked to each other bewildered until one of the guards finally doubly said: —Welcome to the Lambo Empire, we are the protectors of the green meadows of the Crypto Valley, a place where bulls can run free towards the lambo-glory. What do we owe your presence? — the bull solemnly said, the princess was confused and didn’t know what to answer. —Tell them we want an audience with the Permabull Emperor, then, ask him for the page— a voice echoed in the princess’s head, it was Codius who was taking care of her from the distance. —I want to see the Permabull Emperor— firmly answered the little girl. The guardians doubted a little, but due the royalty condition of their guest, they opened the gates and let her pass through the bridge; the princess walked until she was in front of the Emperor, then, she made a reverence and the enormous bull covered with bombastic jewelry nodded in response. —What are you doing here, little princess? —the bull asked. —Somebody stole one page of the XRP magic ledger and I am looking for it, does your majesty know where could I find it? —respectfully asked the princess. The emperor thought it for a moment. —Those damn bears! I am sure they stole the page so they could make the forest grow even further! —The bull showed a notorious gesture of distress —We are in dark times, little girl, the bears are winning the trading war against our army and the valley is being covered with woods. Bears love to destroy all the good and noble things of this world! I hate them so much… Go and find the Permabear, Emperor in the Bottomwoods Empire! He will surely know where your page is! But, be careful, the forest and bears can be dangerous. —Thank you, your majesty, I will. —Just one more thing before you leave— said the emperor with some concern —Just let me know if you recover the page, little girl, Xrp kingdom is our favorite places to run… numbers can travel really fast there and there’s no risk of double-spending them. —Count on that— said Zerpine with a big smile. The girl then did another reverence and left the castle, Codius teleported her again, but this time, she appeared in front of a colossal tree. At the bottom of the trunk was a kind of entrance to a cave, one big fat humanoid bear was keeping the entrance. The girl walked cautious towards him and politely asked: —Hello Mr Bear, I am princess Zerpine and I would like to have an audience with your emperor. The bear looked at her and started to laugh, he didn’t say nothing, but let the girl enter into the cave. The place was humid and dark, but the girl walked sure of herself. At the end of the cave, the small corridor turned into an enormous hall, all the bears were very busy moving from here to there carrying all kinds of weapons and supplies. Nobody seemed to care about the child’s presence, but when she approached at the Permabear emperor, all the guards set defensive positions. The ruler looked distrustfully at her and then asked: —What are you doing here, princess? —Asked the king, he seemed to know who she was. —Your highness, I am here looking for a page of the XRP magic ledger wich was stolen, I am sure you would know something about that. —Stolen page?— the bear rubbed his nose— What are you implying, princess? I don’t know anything about that, in fact, now that you say it, that’s a great opportunity to make the woods grow even stronger in the Xrp kingd… —the bear made a pause to think for a moment — but if the ledger is incomplete, the nodes will stop working and we won’t be able to send numbers… this is bad, XRP is one of our favorite kingdoms to move numbers between ledgers due to its speed and reliability. Princess! You must go and find that page before is too late! Go into the forest and look for the Fudbeast, that could be the only way! —the girl threw a look of surprise at the bear for the weirdness of his monologue but she thanked him anyway and left the cave towards the forest. That entire place was majestic and intimidating, huge trees rose miles towards the sky and the branches and fern barely allowed to walk between them. The girl was walking with difficulty when she unexpectedly heard a depressive echo of voices: “When moon!? When moon!?” they were yelling with a tired and scratchy voice. Zerpine gasped but Codius suddenly appeared and tried to calm her: —Don’t worry, princess, those are “the mooners”, poor bullish souls that got lost into the forest and seek to escape from it, however, many of them end up insane or being devoured by the flying whales up there, if we get to a clear in the forest, maybe you would be able to see one, they like to hide in the thicket of the trees to swallow their preys— Codius suddenly pointed to a spirit wandering nearby the princess— Look! There’s a one over there! do you see how his hands tremble? It is the “weak hands sickness”, the longer they stay in the forest, the more likely they are to release the little strength they have left and get wrecked by the flying wales— the robot said with some sadness. Both of them kept walking and the road led them to a nearby mine, a lot of graphic-card goblins were mining with big machines looking for blocks. Jets of wasted numbers fell in all directions as giant clouds of smoke rose into the sky. The smell was terrible and the princess could barely breathe. —This a bitcoin mine— Codius replied without being questioned— those goblins waste tons of magic-polluting energy to maintain the slow flow of numbers in the ledger, then they unlock blocks and receive more numbers and fees in compensation for their work. They are moved by greed and they don’t really care for the welfare of their kingdoms, if one day they decide to collude, they could overtake the hash power of their kingdom’s flowing numbers and spend them the times they want, thus causing the destruction of that realm, but they don’t care, they just move to another kingdom to take advantage of—. The princess grimaced in disgust. —Well, that’s one of the reasons why voting consensus through nodes is safer— Zerpine replied—people do it for a good cause, not for greed. —That’s right— Codius affirmed. They passed the mine and went further into the forest until they reached an open field; a battle was taking place there. A group of bulls were ramming against the bears who were clawing trying to stop their efforts. Mooners were shouting to the bulls and bears from the distance while a gigantic flying whale was floating above the field giving magic power to the bears who finally defeated the bulls, a lot of Monners were absorbed by the big cetaceous whilst the field were instantly covered with more woods, only a few of them escaped. —Another battle lost by the bulls… —Codius sentenced— well, this is one of the natural Crypto Valley cycles, you will someday discover the importance of these constant battles… —Suddenly, estrange noises interrupted the Codius speech, guttural and disgusting sounds started to emerge from the deeps of the forest. —Watch out princess! The Fudsters are here! They always come after a bull defeat!— The robot exclaimed. The girl ran, but it was futile, just in a blink of an eye she was surrounded by a big group of ugly, skinny troll-alike creatures. The girl just stayed there trying to look brave so the fudsters would keep their distance, but almost all her bravery banished when a big, fat, stinky and disgusting troll prostrated himself in front of her and started to laugh. —Look guys! What do we have here? The princess of Ripple’s centralized, banker’s lame-kingdom! Hahaha!— all the fudsters started to laugh in unison causing a terrible chorus, their roars were accompanied by erratic movements and obscene gestures. —You can do it! —Yelled Codius to the princess’s— you know how to defeat them! —In fact, XRP kingdom is not the same as Ripple stronghold and it is certainly not centralized— the princess answered calmly. —Hohoho! What did I just heard? Ripple not centralized? It has to be a joke! —It’s XRP! And everybody can run a node and participate and vote in the consensus of the kingdom! —Ha! But Ripple stronghold keeps almost all the supply! It is a scam kingdom made to fill the Ripple’s general Garlicbread bags! —The Ripple supply is locked in a scrow and is used to give liquidity and promote the entry of new participants into the ecosystem of the kingdom and thus make it grow and give it even more liquidity, not to “fill their bags”. —Well, but banks will never use XRP! —XRP has already been tested by several banks and it will be use at least by one bank later this year! —Ehm, but, but it’s a banker coin made to steal your bitcoins! —But you just said it will never be used by banks, so then they won’t use the asset they made themselves? That’s a contradiction—replied the brave princess. The troll was confused and disoriented, so Codius took the opportunity to tell the princes: —It’s time princess! Use this magic “facts” wand to finish this troll— and then a withe glowing wand appeared in front of the child. The girl grabbed the magic weapon and started to throw a lightning bolt against the Troll who slowly vanished until he was converted into dust. All the fudsters ran scared to their twittcaves and from the remains of the creature, a beautiful piece of paper fell slowly while the dust settled. It was the stolen page of the magic ledger! The princess took it, and instantly, she was teleported to the same bridge where the journey started. Codius was smiling in front of here. —You did it! You retrieved the page and now the XRP nodes can work at full capacity again! Well done princess! Now it's time to fulfill my part of the agreement… —the robot started to glow and his voice changed into something more magical: —You now know the constant battle between the Bear and the Bull empires. They need each other so the Crypto Valley ecosystem keeps liquid and dynamic. Forests and meadows cannot overtake the entire valley; that would abolish the balance of the realm. The bulls would run an endless ram direct into the abysm and the bears would get drowned by their own woods. We have a lot more space to grow, but I am confident that on the horizon, a bright future awaits us. You already know the code of your USB wallet, enjoy your life, little princess, and take care— then the robot disappeared. A young woman was sitting alone on a living room; she was contemplating through the window the yard where she used to play with her father when she was a kid. The garden had a wood castle, a big three and a little ornamental bridge. A lawyer came then and sat facing the woman. —I really feel the loss of your father— the man kindly said. —He is finally resting, his disease was getting really painful for him— the woman answered. The lawyer smiled slightly as a sign of empathy and opened a folder with an official document. — Very well Miss Zephie, with 21 years old and as your father's will marked, today, on October 21, 2033, I give to you the last good that your father inherited in his last will, this usb wallet—the lawyer solemnly said— he didn’t left the password, I assume you know it—. The woman just stared at him and remembered all the silly games he played with his father when she was a child. —Oh, yes, I know it…
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