A Bird Story

I love telling stories to Sara. One of her favorite time to listen to stories is while she is in the car with me. This evening, when there was a small errand to be carried out, she insisted me to tell her a story.  This is the story that I belted out.

There was a small boy who was very truthful. Whatever he said, he used to do that. He always kept his word. The small boy used to get up early every morning. Then, he used to go to the balcony. In the morning, the air would be cold. There would be lot of birds in the balcony. There would be parrots, parakeets, pigeons, sparrows, dove, koel, myna, barbet, kingfisher and many other birds. He used to feed them every day. One day, a very big peacock came to their balcony. The peacock told him in a human voice - I am hungry, please give me something to eat. The boy was very surprised. How could a peacock speak in a human voice? He asked the peacock How can you speak like a human?

Then the peacock told a story. The peacock said,

Long long ago, I used be live in a King's palace. The king was very fond of birds. He had various types of birds. There were parrots, parakeets, pigeons, sparrows, dove, koel, myna, barbet, kingfisher and many other birds. The king kept all the birds in a cage. The birds were not happy to be in the cage. They never sang any songs or played any games. They were always silent.

One day, dark clouds gathered around the palace. There was loud sound of thunder and big lightening. It started to rain. It rained heavily. It rained so heavily that there was water all around. Slowly, with more rain, the water started rising and flood came. The flood water entered the palace. The king was very afraid. He started running here and there. He asked for help. Help me, please help me..”. But no one knew how to stop the rain.

All of a sudden, an old man with a long white beard appeared. He told the King, I will stop the rain and will save your palace from being flooded. But you have to make me a promise. You have to release all the birds. You should not keep them in the cage. The king readily agreed. The old man then took out some magic dust from his pocket, said "Aabra ka dabra...Aabra ka dabra... and threw the magic dust on the water. Immediately, the rain stopped and the flood water started flowing out. The king was very happy. He kept his promise and released all the birds one by one. All the birds sang their favorite song and flew out happily. But I, the peacock did not fly. I kept sitting there inside the cage.

The king was surprised. All the birds flew out happily but why is the peacock not flying away. He asked the old man for help. The old man then took out some magic dust from his pocket, said Aabra ka dabra...Aabra ka dabra... and threw the magic dust on me. Immediately I was able to speak in a human voice.

That is how I am able to speak in a human voice... 

The small boy asked the peacock, so what did you tell the king?
The peacock continued...

My dear king, 200 years ago, when I was a small baby, my family used to live in a big forest. There were tall trees with green leaves. There were many flowers, fruits and berries in the forest and we used to live very happily. My father, mother, brother, sister, aunt, uncle friends everyone lived nearby.  One day, a bird monster came to the forest. He was a big monster with a blue body and red eyes. He had white hairs all over his body and had large arms and legs. He was always hungry. He used to eat birds for breakfast, birds for lunch and birds for dinner. So, he started eating all the birds in the forest one by one. First he ate all the sparrows, then he ate all the parrots and then all the mynas. Then his eyes were on the peacock.

He came to the tree where we lived and started attacking us. I ran away from there. While running, I fell into a creek. The bird-monster ate all other peacocks but it could not find me. Later in the night, I came out of the creek and I have been going here and there all the places hiding from the bird-monster. Finally, I was caught by a hunter and the bird-monster could not catch me. The hunter sold me to you, o king, and that is how, I came to the palace. I am very safe in the palace and I do not want to go out. If I go out the monster will kill me. Please allow me to stay here.

The king was a very nice man. He said, Peacock - you live in my place without any fear. I will protect you.” That is how I stayed in the palace....

The small boy asked, “Then, how come you are out of the palace now? Is the bird-monster not attacking you?” The peacock told another story: 

One day, when I was playing in the park near the palace, the bird-monster saw me. He came running towards me. As he came the wind blew heavily with the dust and sand was blown everywhere. It made a terrifying noise. I was afraid. I started running towards the palace, shouting; “King O King, please save me from the bird-monster”. Hearing my words, the king came rushing out with his sword. He fought with the bird-monster. The fighting continued day and night, non-stop. They did not eat anything or drink anything. They just kept fighting. They were equally matched. Neither the king could defeat the bird-monster, nor could the bird-monster defeat the king. After 21 days of fighting, the monster became very weak. He could not lift his sword anymore. The king saw this as a chance. He lifted his sword high and tore the belly of the bird-monster. The bird-monster gave a terrifying scream and died.

I came out of the palace, thanked the king very much as he had kept his word. Then I flew away. From that day, I am flying from one place to another in search of persons who keep their word. That is how I came to your place. I know you are a very good boy who keeps his promises. That is why I have come to you....

The small boy gave the peacock some food to eat and asked, “Tell me what do you want from me?” The peacock said, “I want you to promise me that you will look after all the birds and animals and will not hurt them ever. The little boy promised that he would. The peacock gave the little boy one of his feather as a gift and flew away happily.