Short Story - The Reward of Compassion
Princess Rosy was famed for her beauty. Brown eyes, sharp features, spotless fair skin and long wavy hair gave her the look of a fairy. One day the princess felt giddy and she collapsed down unconscious. The royal doctor treated her but no medicine was working. The princess was not coming out of comma. The king loved his daughter deeply.
In the same kingdom, two brothers named John and William lived in a village called Rosseu.
William was very honest compassionate and hard working. John was lazy and selfish. He wasted his time playing on his flute all day long.
One day, William heard two parrots talking in human language on a tree in the jungle where he had gone to collect wood.
One parrot said to other, ‘Do you know the princess of this land is in comma?”
‘Can’t she be cured?’’ the other one asked
‘Why not? There is a tree on the north side hill that bears golden fruits. Juice of one golden fruit can revive the princess. But the slope leading to that tree is very slippery. No one can climb it.”
William told about the parrot talk to his brother and the mother. John said he would get the fruit to earn a big reward from the king. He thought that then he would have to do no work all his life. He set out. The mother gave him some water and food for the way.
At the foot of the hill he met an old woman. She said, “I am hungry. Give me something to eat.” John said, ‘Out of my way, old goat.’ I’ve no food to spare.” John began his climb. His foot slipped and he fell dead.
After days of wart William too set out. The mother gave him also some water and food for the way. William also met that hungry old woman. He gave her half of his food. The slope proved less slippery for him.
Midway up, he saw two parrots. One of them fell down and flopped in front of him gasping. William had little water left for the rest of the climb up. He put that water in the beak of the poor bird. It flew away revived. The slope was no more slippery for him.
William got to the tree and plucked a golden fruit. He felt a surge of magic power in him and in a flash he was at the foot of the hill. The old woman smiled at him.
The juice of the fruit brought by William brought the princess back to consciousness. Rosy opened her eyes to ask ‘Who are you Prince?”
William replied, “I am no prince. A poor farmer. I am.”
The king said, ‘Dear son’ You are no less than a prince for us. Say, what reward do you ask?”
“I want no reward. I just did my duty. The princess Rosy coming back to life is reward in itself. I work hard in my fields and live happily with my mother,’ William said.
The king smiled, ‘But we can’t let an honest and hard working Youngman like you go out of our sight.’
William looked at the king puzzled.
The king explained, ‘You will marry princess Rosy and we shall declare you crown prince of our kingdom. You and your mother shall live with us here in this palace to stay within our sights forever.’
Princess Rosy smiled at William IN agreement.