6. Long Stories


The brahmin and three thugs

Long, long ago, there lived a Brahmin in a small village. His name was Mitra Sharma. Once his father told him to sacrifice a goat according to some ancient Hindu rites. He asked him to visit the cattle fair in a nearby village and purchase a healthy goat for that purpose.

The Brahmin visited the cattle fair and bought a healthy and fat goat. He slung the goat over his shoulder and headed back for his home.

There were three thugs also roaming in the fair, with the sole intention of cheating the shopkeepers and other customers there. When they saw the Brahmin going back to his home with the goat, they thought of a plan to get the goat by employing the methods of thugery.

“This goat will make a delicious meal for all of us. Let’s somehow get it. “The three thugs discussed the matter amongst themselves. Then they separated from one another and took hiding positions at three different places on the path of the Brahmin.

As soon as the Brahmin reached a lonely spot, one of the thugs came out of his hiding place and said to the Brahmin in a surprised tone, “Sir, what’s this? I don’t understand why a pious man like you should carry a dog on his shoulders!”

The Brahmin was shocked to hear these words. He shouted back, “Can’t you see? It’s not a dog but a goat, you fool.”

“I beg for your apology, sir. I told you what I saw. I am sorry if you don’t believe it,” said the thug and went away.

The Brahmin had hardly walked a hundred yards when another thug came out of his hiding place and said to the Brahmin, “Sir, why do you carry a dead calf on your shoulders? You seem to be a wise person. Such an act is sheer foolishness on your part.”

“What!” the Brahmin shouted. “How do you mistake a living goat for a dead calf?”

“Sir,” the second thug replied, “you seem to be highly mistaken in this respect yourself. Either you come from such a country where goats are not found, or you do it knowingly. I just told you what I saw. Thank you.” The second thug went away laughing.

The Brahmin walked further. But again, he had hardly covered a little distance when the third thug confronted him laughing.

“Sir, why do you carry a donkey on your shoulders? It makes you a laughing stock”, said the thug and began to laugh again.

The Brahmin hearing the words of the third thug became highly worried. ‘Is it really not a goat!’ He began to think. “Is it some kind of a ghost!”

The Brahmin got frightened. He thought to himself that the animal he was carrying on his shoulders might certainly be some sort of a ghost, because, it transformed itself from goat into a dog, from dog into a dead calf and from dead calf into a donkey.

The Brahmin was then terrified to such an extent that he flung the goat on to the roadside and fled.

The thugs caught the goat and feasted on it happily.

6. Long Stories


The mice that ate balance

Once upon a time, there lived a wealthy merchant named Jveernadhana, in a village. He ran a big business. His village was situated near a river. Once, due to heavy rains the river was flooded. One night, the whole village was submerged in neck deep water. The crop, houses and factories in the village were destroyed and hundreds of people and cattle perished in the flood.

The merchant had to suffer heavy losses in his business. He decided to shift to some other town to try his luck. His plan was to earn a lot of money and then come back to his native village to start his business again.

Jveernadhana had a heavy iron balance lying with him. It belonged to his ancestors. It was not possible for him to carry such a heavy thing along with him. So, before starting on his journey, he decided to keep this ancestral item with his friend Janak. He met Janak and requested him, “My friend, as you know, I’m leaving for some distant place to earn money, so that I could start my business once again when I come back. I have an old iron balance with me. Will you please keep it safe with you till I return?”

Janak readily agreed to his friend’s request and said, “Don’t worry, I’ll keep it safe for you. You can take it back after you return home.”

Jveernadhana thanked Janak for his helping attitude. He kept the iron balance with Janak and left for some other distant town.

A few years passed by. By this time, Jveernadhana had done good business and had earned a lot of money. He returned to his native village, and went to his friend Janak’s house to meet him. Janak showed his happiness in meeting Jveernadhana. Both the friends talked together for hours. When it was time to leave, Jveernadhana asked his friend to return his iron balance. At this, Janak looked sad and said, “Friend, I am sorry to say that I don’t have your balance with me anymore. There are a lot of mice in my house. They ate up your balance.”

Jveernadhana was surprised to hear Janak’s explanation. ‘How can mice eat iron,’ he thought to himself, but apparently he said something different, “Don’t feel sorry, Janak. The mice have always proved a menace to everyone. Let us forget about it.”

“Yes,” Janak said. “This is the only way out.” He was happy that Jveernadhana believed his words. In fact he had expected a lot of heated arguments in this respect.

While taking leave from his friend, Jveernadhana said to Janak,”I’m going to temple to make an offering of laddoos. Could you please send your son with me. I would like to send some laddoos for you also. He would also look after my shoes outside the temple while I offer prayers inside.”

Janak asked his son to go along with Jveernadhana. Then, Jveernadhana, instead, of taking Janak’s son to temple, took him to a nearby hill and tied him with a big rock and came back home.

When Janak didn’t see his son return, he asked Jveernadhana where his son was?

“I’m sorry,” said Jveernadhana. “While your son was looking after my shoes outside the temple, a big vulture swooped down upon him and carried him away.”

“What nonsense!” shouted Janak. “How can a vulture carry off a young boy?” But Jveernadhana repeatedly claimed that a vulture carried away Janak’s son. The argument reached such a point that they began quarrelling with each other, using dirty words.

Ultimately the matter had to be taken to the court. The Judge listened to both the parties and ordered Jveernadhana to bring Janak’s son to the court, otherwise, he would be sent to jail.

“My Lord”, said Jveernadhana, “How can I, when a vulture has already carried away the boy.”

“Shut up!” the judge reprimanded Jveernadhana. “How can a bird carry away a young boy in his talons?”

“It can, my lord,” said Jveernadhana. “If mice can eat my iron balance, why can’t a bird carry away a grown up boy.” Then he narrated the whole story to the judge.

The judge then asked Janak to tell the truth. He warned him that if he didn’t tell the truth he would be sent to prison. At last, Janak admitted his guilt. The judge ordered him to return the iron balance to Jveernadhana. He asked Jveernadhana to return the boy to Janak.

6. Long Stories


the monkey and the log

Once some monkeys were sitting in a tree. The tree was at such a placed, where construction of a temple was going on.

A carpenter was sawing a huge log to cut it into two parts.Just then the bell rang for the lunch break. The carpenter pushed a wedge into the split portion of the half sawed log and went to take his lunch, along with other workers.

When the monkeys saw that there was nobody around, they jumped down from the tree and came near the temple. They began to play with the tools lying there. One of the monkeys, who was very curious about all those things, went round the half sawed log. Then sat on top of it. He spread his legs on both sides of the log, whereas his tail dangled through the split portion.

Now the monkey started prying the wedge out of the log with his hands. Suddenly, the wedge came out. The split parts of the log firmly snapped shut together crushing the monkeys tail in between. The monkey cried in pain and jumped off the log, but his tail was cut off for ever.

6. Long Stories


the lions bad breath

Long ago, there lived a lion in a dense forest. One morning his wife told him that his breath was bad and unpleasant. The lion became very angry and got embarassed to hear this comment. He wanted to check this fact with his councillors, as well. So he summoned them one by one to his court.

First came the sheep.

“Hello friend sheep,” said the lion, opening his mouth wide, “tell me, if my mouth smells bad?”

The sheep thought that king lion wanted an honest answer from him, so he said, “Yes, Your Majesty. There seems to be something wrong with your breath.”

This plain speak did not go well with king lion. He pounced upon the sheep, killed him and ate him.

Then king lion called the wolf and said, “What do you think? Have I a bad breath?”

The wolf knew the fate his colleague, the sheep, had met. He wanted to be very cautious in answering a royal question.

So, the wolf said, “Who says that Your Majesty’s breath is unpleasant. It’s as sweet as the smell of roses.”

When the king lion heard the reply he roared in anger and immediately attacked the wolf and killed it. “The flatterer!” growled king lion.

Finally, came the turn of the fox, who was lion’s third councillor.

When the fox came, the lion asked him the same question.

The fox was well aware of the fate of his two colleagues. So he coughed and cleared his throat again and again and then said, “Your Majesty, for the last few days, I have been having a very bad cold. Due to this, I can’t smell anything, pleasant or unpleasant.”

The king lion spared the fox’s life.

6. Long Stories


the wolf and the lamb

Long ago, there lived a wolf in a dense forest. The forest was surrounded by hills and gorges. A small river flowed through it.

Once the wolf was drinking water at the head of a stream, when he saw a lamb drinking water from the same source down at some distance. The cunning wolf began to think of an excuse for attacking the gentle lamb and eating him. So he shouted down at the lamb, “How dare you make the water dirty I am drinking?”

“You must be mistaken, sir,” said the poor lamb gently. “How can I be making your water dirty, since it flows from you to me and not from me to you?”

The wolf. began thinking cunningly of some other ruse in order to make an issue and get a justifiable excuse to kill the lamb and eat his delicious flesh.

“Do you remember having applied all sorts of contemptuous and even abusive epithets to me, just a year ago?” said the wolf to the innocent lamb.

“But, sir,” replied the lamb in a trembling voice, “I wasn’t even born a year ago.”

“Shut up, you fool,” shouted the wolf again. “Do you think I’m a fool? If it was not you then it must have been your father, who abused me long ago.”

“At the most, I can apologise on behalf of my erring father if he at all ever did so,” pleaded the lamb trembling.

“I think you’re the kind of fellow who first commits a sin and then tries to argue it out. Let me teach you and your family a good lesson”, saying this the wolf jumped upon the poor lamb and tore it to pieces and ate it.

6. Long Stories


The jackal and the arrow

Once a hunter was hunting in a forest. After sometime, he felt hungry. He saw a wild boar coming towards him. He shot an arrow at the boar. The arrow pierced the boar’s neck and protruded at its back.

But the boar, before falling on the ground, killed the hunter with his pointed tusks. Soon the hunter and the boar both were lying dead at the same spot.

At the same time, a hungry jackal happened to pass through that place. He saw a man and an animal, both lying dead there. ‘What a good luck I have? So much food to eat for days together’, thought the jackal to himself. He began to think whose flesh to eat first – the man or the animal.

He decided to go slow at the eating, so that the food would last for a longer period.

The jackal decided first to lick the blood and eat a little flesh stuck round the tusks of the boar. But, as soon as, he put the pointed tip of the boar’s tusks in his mouth it pierced his jaws and went through his head. The jackal died on the spot.

6. Long Stories


the wolf and the crane

Once, there lived a greedy and cunning wolf in a dense forest. One day, while he was having his dinner, a bone got stuck into his throat. He tried hard to take it out, but couldn’t succeed in his effort.

The wolf began whining with pain. The pain was unbearable. The wolf got worried and began thinking, “The pain will subside in due course. But, what will happen if the bone doesn’t come out. I won’t be able to eat anything. I will starve to death.”

The wolf began thinking of some possible remedy to overcome theproblem.

Suddenly he recalled that there was a crane who lived on the banks of a nearby lake. He immediately went to the crane and said, “My friend, I’ve a bone stuck deep into my throat. If you could please pull it out of my throat with your long beak, I shall pay you suitably for your help and remain ever-grateful to you.”

The crane saw his pitiable condition and agreed to help him. He put him long beak, and in the process, half of his neck also, deep into the throat of the wolf and pulled the bone out. The wolf was very happy to have the bone pulled out of his throat.

“Now pay me my fees, please,” The crane requested.

“What fees?”, said the wolf. “You put your head into my mouth and I let it out safely. That’s enough of my kindness. Now get lost, otherwise, I’ll kill you and eat your flesh.”

6. Long Stories


The little mouse and the big elephants

Once upon a time a village was devastated by a strong earthquake. Damaged houses and roads could be seen everywhere. The village was, as a matter of fact, in a total ruin. The villagers had abandoned their houses and had settled in a nearby village. Finding the place totally devoid of residents, the mice began to live in the ruined houses. Soon their number grew into thousands and millions.

There was also a big lake situated near the ruined village. A herd of elephants used to visit the lake for drinking water. The herd had no other way but to pass through the ruins of the village to reach the lake. While on their way, the elephants trampled hundreds of mice daily under their heavy feet. This made all the mice very sad. Many of them were killed while a large number of them were maimed.

In order to find a solution to this problem, the mice held a meeting.In the meeting, it was decided that a request should be made to the king of elephants to this effect. The king of mice met the king of elephants and said to him, “Your Majesty, we live in the ruins of the village, but everytime your herd crosses the village, thousands of my subjects get trampled under the massive feet of your herd. Kindly change your route. If you do so, we promise to help you in the hour of your need.”

Hearing this the king of elephants laughed. “You rats are so tiny to be of any help to giants like us. But in any case, we would do a favour to all of you by changing our route to reach the lake and to make you more safe.” The king of mice thanked the king elephant and returned home.

After sometime, the king of a nearby kingdom thought of increasing the number of elephants in his army. He ordered his soldiers to catch more elephants for this purpose.

The king’s soldiers saw this herd and put a strong net around the elephants. The elephants got trapped. They struggled hard to free themselves, but in vain.

Suddenly, the king of elephants recollected the promise of the king of mice, who had earlier talked about helping the elephants when needed. So he trumpeted loudly to call the king of mice. The king of mice hearing the voice of the king of elephants immediately rushed along with his followers to rescue the herd. There he found the elephants trapped in a thick net.

The mice set themselves on the task. They bit off the thick net at thousands of spots making it loose. The elephants broke the loose net and freed themselves.

They thanked the mice for their great help and extended their hands of friendship to them forever.

6. Long Stories


Long, long ago, there lived a strange bird in a huge banyan tree. The tree stood beside a river. The strange bird had two heads, but only one stomach.

Once, while the bird was flying high in the sky, he saw an apple shaped fruit lying on the bank of the river. The bird swooped down, picked up the fruit and began to eat it. This was the most delicious fruit the bird had ever eaten.

As the bird had two heads, the other head protested, “I’m your brother head. Why don’t you let me also eat this tasty fruit?”

The first head of the bird replied, “Shut up.You know that we’ve only one stomach. Whichever head eats, the fruit will go to the same stomach. So it doesn’t matter as to which head eats it. Moreover, I’m the one who found this fruit. So I’ve the first right to eat it.”

Hearing this, the other head became silent. But this kind of selfishness on the part of the first head pinched him very much. One day, while flying, the other head spotted a tree bearing poisonous fruits. The other head immediately descended upon the tree and plucked a fruit from it.

“Please don’t eat this poisonous fruit,” cried the first head. “If you eat it, both of us will die, because we’ve a common stomach to digest it.”

“Shut up!” shouted the other head. “Since I’ve plucked this fruit, I’ve every right to eat it.”

The first head began to weep, but the other head didn’t care. He wanted to take revenge. He ate the poisonous fruit. As a result both of them died.

6. Long Stories


the lion and the hare

There lived a lion by the name of Bhasuraka, in a dense jungle. He was very powerful, cruel and arrogant. He used to kill the animals of the jungle unnecessarily. He even killed the human beings, who travelled through the jungle. This became a cause of worry for all the animals. They discussed this problem among themselves and ultimately came upon a decision to hold a meeting with the lion and make an amicable settlement with him and put an end to this ongoing trauma.

So, one day, all the animals of the jungle assembled under a big tree. They also invited king lion to attend the- meeting. In the meeting the animals said to king lion, “Your Majesty, we are happy that you are our king. We are all-the-more happy that you are presiding over the meeting.” King lion thanked them and asked, “Why is it that we have gathered here?” All the animals began looking at each other. They had to muster enough courage to broach the topic. “Sir,” said one of the animals, “Its natural that you kill us for food. But, killing more than what is required is a positive vice and unnecessary. If you go on killing the animals without any purpose, soon a day will come, when there will be no animals left in the jungle.”

“So what do you want?” roared king lion.

“Your Majesty, we have already discussed the problem among ourselves and have come upon a solution. We have decided to send one animal a day to your den. You can kill and eat it. This will save you from the trouble of hunting and you will not have to kill a number of animals unnecessarily for your meals.”

“Good,” the lion roared back. “I agree to this proposal, but the animals must reach to me in time, otherwise, I’ll kill all the animals of the jungle.”

The animals agreed to this proposal. Everyday one animal walked into the lion’s den to become his feast. The lion too was very happy to have his food right before him. He stopped hunting for his prey.

One day, it was the turn of a hare to go into the lion’s den. The little hare was unwilling to go and become a meal of the lion, but the other animals forced him to go to the lion’s den.

Having no alternative, the hare began thinking quickly. He thought of a plan. He began wandering around and made a deliberate delay, and reached the lion’s den a little late than the lion’s meal time. By now, the lion had already lost his patience and seeing the hare coming slowly, he became furious and demanded for an explanation.

“Your Majesty”, the hare said with folded hands, “I am not to be blamed for that. I have come late because another lion began chasing me and wanted to eat me. He said that he too was the king of the jiungle.”

The king lion roared in great anger and said, “Impossible, there cannot exist another king in this jungle. Who is he? I’ll kill him. Show me where he lives.”

The lion and the hare set out to face the other lion. The hare took the lion to a deep well, full of water.

When they reached near the well, the hare said to the lion, “This is the place where he lives. He might be hiding inside.”

The lion again roared in great anger; climbed up the puteal of the well and peeped in. He saw his own reflection in the water and thought that the other lion was challenging his authority. He lost his temper.

“I must kill him”, said the lion unto himself and jumped into the well. He was soon drowned.

The hare was happy. He went back to other animals and narrated the whole story. All the animals took a sigh of relief and praised him for his cleverness. They all lived happily thereafter.