HOW THE PARAKEET KING REGAINED HIS FREEDOM
A parakeet king and his subjects once had their nests in a huge tall tree in one of Buliurang forest.They were always up early in the morning,usuallly before sunrise,to make ready for the flight to far-off place in search of food.Late in the evening they returned home,then stayed in their nests to rest till the next morning.This happened day after day,for such was their life.
But one bright morning th they discovered to their consternation that there was no possibility of their leaving their nests.Their wings and bodies were glued together.”why?”They wondered,but they did not get any answer.
“what can we do?”They asked each other in panic.Only the Parakeet king was calm.He said “I think somebody has come by day to snare us.A human bein must have done this to catch us.You know we can speak,we can imitate human speech aand therefore everybody wants us in the house.This person can sell u for lots of money or he can also prepare delicious food of us for his family.”
“All right then,but how can we escape now?”Asked one bird
“Don’t worry.”The king answered.”I have an idea.This morning someone will surely come to find out whether he was successful in snaring us.When he arrives here,don’t move,lies as if dead.He will certainly think we are dead and then he will throw us to the ground.When you are on the ground,keep still and count to ninety nine.This will mean that all of us have fallen,then fly away together.Understand?”They nodded.
The king was right.A few hours later,the birds saw a boy approaching their tree.He looked upwards and saw the birds lying in their nests.
“How lucky I am!”He whispered in joy.”All of them are still in their nests!Hmm,I’ll get plenty of money.I can buy fine clothes and something for my parents.”It was this boy called Anthony,who had put lime in the nests to catch the birds.Full of expectation,h climbed up the tree but great was his dis appoinment on discovering that all the creatures were dead.
“Unlucky me!”He cried.Annoyed at the sad discovery,he flung all of them one by one to the ground.The parakeet king’s nest was on the highest branch of the tree and therefore the king was the last to be throen to the ground.But just as the boy was about to throw the bird down,his knife fell out of his pocket.The sound of its fall caused the birds on the ground tothink that their number was complete,and therefore they all fleew away at the same moment.The birds,as well as Anthony,were surprised,the birds on discovering that their king was not in their group and Anthony of finding that the birds were not really dead at all.Now he realizdd that the birds had played a trick upon him.
“How stupid I am!”He grumbled.”But never mind,another time I’llbe lucky.”While he was standing under the tree h noticed a bird fell down at teh lower branch of a nearby tree.The bird couldn’t fly away as there was still lime on his wings and legs which held him fast to the branch.Time after time he attempted to get loose,but in vain.
“Well!”Anthony thouight,”It is the parakeet king,how beautifull he looks!”Anhtony stealthily approached the bird and in one moment he got hold of his legs.Al;though the parakeet struggled to get free,he could not,for the grasp of the boy’s hand was too firm for the little bird.
“Poor me!”Lamented the unlucky creature.”This boy will prepare a delicious meal of me for his family.”
Anthony took the bird home.But on the way the bird suddenly spoke to him,”Please don’t kill me.I’ll bring you much wealth and happiness.”
“Can i trust you?”
“You’ll see,just let me live,”The parakeet king answered.
On arriving home Anthony the put he bird in a beuautiful yelloow cage and hung it on the front of his house.There every morning he sang his lovely song to the great enjoyment af all around.His subject too had heard him and they flew tot he house,sitting on the ridge of the roof.Soon the beauty and the mekpdious voice of the small creature became known all through the land.People came from every corner of the country to see and hear the bird sing,bringing with them noce food,money and fine clothes for Anthony.Soon Anthony became a wealthy man and didn’t having trusted the bird.
The fane of the bird also reached the king’s eara.He too wanted to see the bird and hear him sing.Thererfore a messenger was sent from the court to Anthony with instruction to come to the place of the king,bringing the bird with him.This was a great day for Anthony.He put on his best clothes and mad for the palace,carrying the bird in a beutiful,brand new cage.On his arrival at the palace gate,a courtier met him and took him into the presence of the king.The latter was already sitting with other guests in the big hall where the bird was to sing.
High and low,loud and soft,sounded the melodious voice,as clear as a bell,that came from the bird’s throat.The king and the aydience were very pleased.
“No instrument whatsoevr could surpass that heavenly voice,”Thet said.
After the performance Anthony was asked to sell the bird to the king.As he himslef was eager to keep the bird,he hesistated but the bird whispered to him”Don’t be afraid,please sekk me to the king.You won’t regret it,it will be to your advantage.”Up to that moment t
E bird hadn’t disappointed him,so why not trust in this time?Therefore Anthony presented the parakeet to the king.In return he received a great amount of money,besides valuable presents.From that time on,Anthony was the wealthiest man in the village.
At the royal court the parakeet king lived a truly kingly life.His cage was made of gold and his food was delicious.Nevertheless,a gold cage was no match for life of freedom in the forest.He pined for his subjects.Flying together with them in the air to far off place was the life he desired,this would sham death and this de did one bright morning.he lay at te bottom of his cage,making no movement whatsoever.Thw keepere thought he was dead.Hearing about the death of the beloved bird,the king was filled with sadness.He stood near the cage with tears running down his cheeks.
“Dear bird,I’ll never hear your voice again,”He whispered.Then he ordered a stately burial for the bird in the palace garden,which was full of beautiful flowers.However,when the bird was laid on the ground while the grave was being dug,all of a sudden he spread his wings and flew high into the sky,out of reach of all those present.
“Free!”Shouted the parakeet king in joy,as he looked for his subjects in order to live happily with them in the forest.
Finally he can regain his freedom and flew away whereever he wants to go.He met with his subjects again and did fly togehter,they built beautiful nests as a king.