Shishu Sansaar | Arabian Nights Stories-3
|Arabian Nights Stories-3|
|Story No 55|
55 - The Witch and the Draper's Wife
There was a man of the drapers who had a beautiful and chaste wife. A young man saw her coming out of Hammaam (bathroom) and loved her so much that he got engrossed in her ideas. He devised all kinds of ways to access her but to no avail. And when he got tired of doing all kinds of efforts, he went to a witch to get help. She promised him to bring her to him. He thanked her for this and promised her to give many kinds of things.
She asked him to buy a turban cloth of the finest cloth he could get for her husband. So he went to the Draper and bought a turban cloth of lawn, returned and gave it to that old woman. She took it and burned it in two places. Then she asked him to buy a devotee's cloth and taking the turban cloth with her, went to the Draper's house and knocked at the door.
When the Draper's wife saw her as a devotee, she opened the door and took her inside the house and welcomed her. They talked for a while, then she told her that she wanted to Vuzoo-ablution for prayer. At this, the wife brought her some water, she did the Vuzoo, prayed and satisfied herself and went away. At the same time the Draper came there, at the time of nightly prayer, and sitting down at the prayer place, where the old woman prayed, looked down and saw the turban. He recognized it and suspected some foul play. He got very angry with his wife and did not speak to her on that day and night. She could not know the reason for this anger.
Then she looked down and saw the turban and noted the traces of burning thereon, understood that this turban cloth was the reason of his anger. She thought that since it was burnt, that is why he was angry.
In the morning the Draper still being angry with her, went out. After a while the witch came to her and found her pale, dejected, and heart-broken. She asked the reason of her sorrow, and the wife told her how her husband was angry with her on account of the burning of the turban cloth.
She said to her - "Don't be so desperate for I have a son who is a fine tailor. He will repair your turban cloth as it was." "When shall this be?" "Tomorrow. I will bring him here when your husband is not here, and he shall repair it and will go before your husband comes in." Thus she comforted her and went away. She went to the young man and told him about this development.
Now as the Draper saw the turban cloth, he decided to divorce his wife and waited only till he could collect the dowry to give her parents. In the morning that witch took the young man to the Draper's house. The wife opened the door and let them in. She then said to the wife - "Go and bring the turban cloth and give it to my son." So saying she bolted the door on her, the young man loved her against her will and went away.
Then the witch cried - "This is my son. He loved you exceedingly and was to lose his life for you; that is why I devised this way for him and came to you with this turban cloth, which is not of your husband's but is of my son's. Now I have fulfilled my wish, so you trust me and I will put an artifice on your husband for setting you right with him and you will be subject to him, my son and me." The wife said - "Do so."
Then the old woman returned to the young man and said to him - "I have set your affair with her, but now we must mend what we have already damaged. Go to the Draper, and mention to him about the turban saying, "The turban I bought from you, I chanced to burn at two places. I gave it to certain woman to mend it. She took it and went away. I did not know her house." When you see me passing by, rise and lay hold of me, "This is the woman", ask me your cloth. I will then arrange your affair with his wife and the matters will be all right.
According to the plan he went to the Draper's shop and sat down and talked to him as the witch said to him. Hearing his talks, the Draper got startled by the thought that he had suspected his wife wrongfully and he got soft towards his wife. After a short while the woman came there, so the young man jumped seeing her and seized her and asked for his cloth.
She said - "I entered one house, I prayed there and I forgot the turban cloth there and came away from there. Now I don't remember the house in which I prayed. I will go house to house till the night, and try to find out the house because I don't know the owner of the house." Hearing this the Draper said - "That turban cloth is with me and in my house." Immediately he rose and handed the turban cloth to her, as it was hers and she handed it to the young man.
Then the Draper made peace with his wife and brought her many clothes and jewelry to please her.
End of Story No 55
Created by Sushma Gupta on January 15, 2002
Modified on 11/30/13