Mr. Viceroy would dress up all the time so that he looked just like Mr. Monarch. Everywhere he went, people would mistake him for Mr. Monarch and gasp, pointing at him. But looking wasn't enough. He wanted to be *just* like Mr. Monarch. He had a good reason. You see, Mr. Monarch was very poisonous to all sorts of evil creatures that wanted to eat butterflies. So he followed Mr. Monarch around to all the same clubs, and listened to all the same music, and talked the same way. One day, Mr. Monarch noticed that Mr. Viceroy was following him around. It's kinda hard not to notice someone who looks just like you when they go everywhere you go!
So Mr. Monarch confronted Mr. Viceroy. "Yo, why you frontin? I need to keep it real. I can't have you posin all up in my game."
Mr. Viceroy hung his little butterfly head ashamed. "I just wanted to be like the original g. You're... my hero." Mr. Monarch was impressed by Mr. Viceroy's good taste, so eventually his distaste faded away and he agreed to let Mr. Viceroy hang with him. He kind of liked having Mr. Viceroy around, because he would try to do the same things as Mr. Monarch, but only Mr. Monarch could do those things really well, since they were his things to do in the first place, so Mr. Viceroy just ended up making him look better by comparison.
One day, towards the end of the summer, there was a terrible smell on the air that had all the butterflies in the wood panicked. No one could tell what it was until a crow came screeching by shouting: "Fire! Fire in the forest!" He landed in an exhausted heap and only Mr. Monarch and Mr. Viceroy were brave enough to fly over to him, because they knew they would not be eaten. But this crow couldn't eat them if it had wanted to; it was near death from having flown to escape the fire and warn everyone in the forest. It was so tired that it could barely be heard. So Mr. Monarch and Mr. Viceroy had to flutter right down next to it so it could tell them about the fire in the west. They headed up the butterflies' escape efforts and organized a retreat to the east.
All the butterflies but Mr. Viceroy and Mr. Monarch had left. The poor crow was still lying on its side, too weak to fly to safety. The two butterflies flew over to him, concerned. This crow would have been their enemy at any other time, but he had just saved all their friends. And now he would die if they couldn't help him.
"Mr. Crow, Mr. Crow, you have to get up and fly to safety! You just have to!" Mr. Viceroy pleaded. But the crow feebly shook his head, feeling his strength ebb. It was then that Mr. Viceroy knew what he had to do. "Mr. Crow, you need your strength back. Eat me. I'm only a viceroy butterfly, so I'm not poisonous." A butterfly's life is short, and Mr. Viceroy and Mr. Monarch were already very old for butterflies.
"But even if I eat you, I may not make it. At best, I'll make it to the edge of the forest and have to hop the rest of the way." And Mr. Monarch looked sadly at his proud wings. He couldn't help at all. Mr. Viceroy reluctantly insisted that the crow eat him and at least try to escape. And the crow was a crow; eating butterflies was part of his nature. And he wanted to survive any way he could. He ate Mr. Viceroy and marshalled his strength. He flapped his wings and prepared to take off when he looked over his shoulder to see if Mr. Monarch was coming. But Mr. Monarch's own strength was ebbing after the stress of flying all over helping his friends escape. He fluttered his faded wings a few times with the last of the energy and died without saying a word. The crow turned and took to the air, heading east.