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“But, my boy,” Astyages said, “does not your father get drunk, when he drinks?”

“No, by Zeus,” said he.

“Well, how does he manage it?”

“He just quenches his thirst and thus suffers no further harm; for he has, I trow, grandfather, no Sacas to pour wine for him.”

“But why in the world, my son,” said his mother,1 “are you so set against Sacas?”

“Because, by Zeus,” Cyrus replied, “I don't like him; for oftentimes, when I am eager to run in to see my grandfather, this miserable scoundrel keeps me out. But,” he added, “I beg of you, grandfather, allow me for just three days to rule over him.”

“And how would you rule over him?” said Astyages.

“I would stand at the door,” Cyrus replied, “just as he does, and then when he wished to come in to luncheon, I would say, ‘You cannot interview the luncheon yet; for it is engaged with certain persons.”And then when he came to dinner, I would say, ‘It is at the bath.’ And if he were very eager to eat, I would say, ‘It is with the ladies.’ And I would keep that up until I tormented him, just as he torments me by keeping me away from you.”

1 His antipathy toward Sacas

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