In a forest there lived a lion. He had grown old and could not run fast anymore. As days went by it became more and more difficult for him to hunt.
One day while he was wandering through the forest in search of food, he came across a cave. He peeped in and smelt the air inside the cave. “Some animal must be staying here,” he said to himself. He crept inside the cave only to find it empty. “I will hide inside and wait for the animal to return,” he thought.
The cave was the home of a jackal. Everyday, the jackal would go out in search of food and return to the cave in the evening to rest. That evening, the jackal after having his meal started towards home. But as he came closer, he felt something wrong. Everything around him very quiet. “Something is wrong,” the jackal said to himself. “Why are all the birds and insects so silent?”
Very slowly and cautiously, he walked towards his cave. He looked around him, watching for any signs of danger. As he got closer to the mouth of the cave, all his instincts alerted him of danger. “I have to make sure that everything is alright,” thought the jackal. Suddenly, he thought of a plan.
The clever jackal called out to the cave. “Hello my good cave, what happened to you today? Why are you so quiet?”
The jackal’s voice echoed deep inside the cave. The lion, who by now could control his hunger no longer, thought to himself, “I think it is because I am here that the cave is silent. Before the jackal realises that something is wrong, I should do something.”
The jackal continued to call out, “Have you forgotten our agreement cave? You are supposed to greet me when I return home.” The lion tried to make his voice sound hollow and called out from within the cave, “Welcome home my friend.”
The birds chirped loudly and flew away on hearing the lion’s roar. As for the jackal, he shook with fear. Before the hungry lion could pounce on him and eat him up, the jackal ran for his dear life as fast as his legs could carry him.
The lion waited for a long while for the jackal to enter the cave. But when the jackal did not come in, the lion realised that he had been fooled. He cursed himself for his foolishness that made him lose a prey.