King Charles was today taken to hospital to have one-time journalist Nicholas Witchell's head removed from his rectum.
The Palace was keen to stress this was not an emergency, merely dealing with a problem the King's physicians have been aware of for some years.
A ginger growth in the royal passage was first detected in 1998, when Witchell gave up journalism to become the BBC's Royal Correspondent. Later scans showed a strip of red so long it was initially mistaken for a red carpet, but turned out to be Witchell's tongue.
Witchell's editors at the BBC say this casts his claim to have been privy to "backstairs gossip" in an entirely new light.
Physicians say the King should be much more comfortable after the operation, though he might find the BBC's coverage isn't so fawning and uncritical any more, to which he replied "Oh God, really? Any chance we could put it back?"
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