The Pandemonic Kingdom of Periodic

Disclaimer: I started writing this, and then my friend edited and extended it.

There were nine families in the Kingdom of Periodic, and so it was that when they met, over one hundred elements sat at the Periodic Table. In disputes, the Kingdom was usually split into two factions: the Metals and the Non-metals. Although the Metals by far outnumbered the Non-metals, the status quo was that Non-metals were generally more powerful and important than any Metal.

The first family, the Alkali Metals, was headed by Hydrogen – who was not technically part of the Alkali Metals, but a Non-metal. However, Hydrogen was an outcast of the Non-metals: an odd sort and immature at times, Hydrogen refused to obey many rules that the more mature elements had put in place. This self-styled ‘number one element’ often fell in love with an element from the sixth family, Oxygen. When Hydrogen was more in control of the relationship, their love was pure and often dissolved tension between other elements. But the other Alkali Metals didn’t like their leader mixing with a Non-metal and when they happened upon this relationship they exploded in unhappy rage.

This family possessed the least valence electrons – for that was the currency of the elements – and the other families preyed on them for sport, taking what little electrons the Alkali Metals had for themselves. In fact, the Alkali Metals were the smallest of the elements and the most volatile. Francium in particular was an element to be watched carefully at all times, particularly when Hydrogen and Oxygen were together.

Nonetheless, the Alkali Metals were a more positive family.

The second family, the Alkaline Earth Metals, swore allegiance to Beryllium. These elements had slightly more valence electrons than the Alkali Metals, but were also poor. They were a very amenable and admired family; Calcium was often joked to be the bones of the elements while Magnesium was the target of many elements as she was described as blindingly beautiful when she was lit up. Despite their relative lack of wealth, the Alkaline Earth Metals were more positive than the Alkali Metals and seemed to give up their electrons with a never-ending generosity.

In between the Metals and the Non-metals were the Transition Metals, the largest of the families and the most diverse. This family was so large, in fact, that it was led by ten separate elements: Scandium, Titanium, Vanadium, Chromium, Manganese, Iron, Cobalt, Nickel, Copper, and Zinc.

Generally, the Transition Metals were as positive as the Alkaline Earth Metals, but some of them, like Silver, were slightly more depressed and were only as happy as the Alkali Metals. Many of the Transition Metals were rather mad – the Lanthanoids and the Actinoids were so terrifying to the other elements that they were segregated onto a separate portion of the Periodic Table when the elements met. Yttrium, an element close to the Lanthanoids and Actinoids, couldn’t see the reason for this separation and constantly repeated in a sort of mantra ‘why’. Mercury was very toxic in his madness, and in a normal state couldn’t hold himself together very well.

Post-transition Metals were the third family, headed by a Metalloid known as Boron. It was the fourth family that was mostly made up of Metalloids but was headed by another Non-metal, Carbon. The fifth family was a mix of other Non-metals and Metalloids, headed by Non-metal Nitrogen, while the sixth family was mostly made of Non-metals and led by Non-metal Oxygen.

Families three, four, five, and six were the more negative elements and in their depression often inbred and confused the family lines. They liked to share their valence electrons with each other because of this disorder and work together to relieve the poorer families of their valence electrons.

Carbon was considered most useful of the elements, for Carbon was very flexible and could give, take or share electrons. Sulfur was the playboy of the Kingdom of Periodic, giving off pheromones that were irresistible to even the most strong-willed element.

It was whispered that some of the elements had bred with the Transition Metals to create the lethal elements in these families – but the venom contained within Arsenic and Lead were usually ignored to appreciate the ‘better’ elements like Aluminium and Silicon.

The seventh family called themselves the Halogens and hailed Fluorine as their leader. This family was the most negative of the elements in the Kingdom of Periodic, but unlike the chaos of families three to six, they revelled in their unhappiness and took out their jealousy on the other elements. Fluorine was the greediest element in Periodic, whizzing about stealing electrons left, right, and centre. Only rarely did Fluorine share. Iodine was the most selfish of all the elements, while Chlorine was unusually violent and Bromine was sly and cunning in her weeping sadness.

Out of all the families in the Kingdom of Periodic, only one family did not participate in the squabbling over valence electrons. This family was known as the Noble Gases, and the most noble of all was their leader, Helium. Helium was the largest in size of the elements, but didn’t throw his weight around. He often seemed to be above all the elements, somehow as light as a feather.

Noble Gases didn’t fight over valence electrons as they were the wealthiest of all the elements, but never stole, and were never stolen from – except in very, very extreme circumstances. It was quite difficult to interact with the Noble Gases, not because they were unsociable but because they were simply so above anything and everything that a ‘normal’ element could even think about.

They were bigger, stronger and better than all the other elements without even trying. Neon was more beautiful than Magnesium, Krypton was the secret weakness of playboy Sulfur, Xenon was as princess-y as she was an untouchable warrior and although Radon was the thickest of the Noble Gases, he held grudges for a very long time and was more evil than any Halogen. When an element was found dead, other elements would look with trepidation and resignation to that element’s history regarding Radon before the Halogens.

So the elements in the Kingdom of Periodic were held in check by the Noble Gases and the regular meetings at the Periodic Table to discuss their problems. They were separated to keep each other from fighting, but despite agreeing to segregation, most of the elements purposefully overstepped the boundaries and fought with each other anyway. Harmony didn’t really matter to them, nor did being particularly logical or sane. They were held together – almost in peace – by a fundamental philosophy: that being all mixed up just meant they were in a solution.

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