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Arabian Nights Stories-3

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Story No 65-4/4

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65-4 - Three Sharpers, Two Sultaans, and a Lunatic (4 of 4)
For a similar story to this - read the story in    SECTION-4/Story 73-4-2

When I reached home, my mother was weeping, I consoled her and told her the whole account. She said - "May Allaah give you all kinds of happiness, but you come to me every two days to meet me." Next I went to my shop and was busy till noon time. Then I went back to the same place where that woman left me. She was waiting for me. She took me from there blindfolded. Now whenever I had to come out or go in, the old woman always blindfolded me before that; and whenever I asked her, "Why do you do so?" She replied the same, "There are many houses here whose doors are open and many beautiful women are living here, you might fall in love with them, so this is for your peace of mind."

This happened for the next 30 days at all times and on all days. Once I thought "Why did she marry me? She is so rich then why should she marry me?" I was not able to establish the cause of it. One day I got an opportunity to be with one of her black slave girls. I asked her some questions about her mistress. She replied - "The history of my mistress is very marvelous, but I cannot tell you lest she hears and I have to die." I promised her - "If you will tell me, I will keep it to myself and not let anybody know it." Then I took the oath of the secrecy and she told me --

"Once my lady went to take bath with the aim of pleasuring. At that time she made a gift of lots of money. After taking the bath, she took her noon time meal in a flower garden. She enjoyed the food till evening and when she left that place she distributed the remnants of food to the poor. On her return, she passed through the market and stood by your shop. It was a Friday. You were adorned in one of your finest clothes and talking to your neighbor. She got love-stricken and when she came home, she sank in melancholy. She did not eat or drink well.

At this her mother went to a doctor to treat her. He said that there was no physical ailment, but she was in love. So the old woman understood her case. He took her mother in private and said - "Believe me what I will say will be true. Your daughter is in love and there is no medicine for it except the union with that man." "How to manage it? Because without you this cannot be managed." Then the mother went to her daughter and said to her - "The doctor says that you are not physically ill. So tell me about him and I will try to fulfill your wish." Then she told her about you after 20 days. Then her mother found you, and thus you are here. Don't tell this anybody." "No, By Allaah, no."

I continued to live with her for one month daily to go to my mother and to see my shop, and returning to my wife in the evening, blindfolded and guided by my mother-in-law. Now one day, as I was sitting in my shop, a girl came in the Bazaar bearing the image of a rooster made of precious metal, crusted with pearls and rubies and other gems. She offered it for sale. They opened the bidding for 500 Deenaars, but soon went up to 950 Deenaars. I was quiet for all this time. The girl came to me and said - "All people increased the price for this rooster, but you never spoke a word, please say something." I said - "I don't need it." "But you have to bid more than the others." I said - "OK, I add 50 Deenaars for your happiness." She said - "So you gained this rooster."

I came to my shop to take money thinking that I will present this gift to my wife as a surprise, but when I was counting the 1,000 Deenaars, the girl did not take the money and asked me if she could take one kiss on my cheek. I asked her, "For what purpose?" "That will be the price of the rooster." I thought to myself that a kiss on my cheek for 1,000 Deenaars is a good price, so I gave my consent. She came up to me and kissed on my cheek so hard that she bit me and left a mark. Then she gave me the rooster and went her ways.

When it was noon, I went to my wife and I found her sitting in wrath. I took out the rooster and giving it to her said - "Take this rooster I have bought for you. I hope it will please you." She took it in her hand, turn it around and asked me - "Did you buy this for me?" "Yes, For a 1,000 gold pieces." Then she looked at my face and asked - "But what is the meaning of this bite on your cheek?" Then she called her maids who came down with a corpse of a young woman, head cut, and placed upon the middle of her body. I saw that the corpse was of the same girl who sold me the rooster.

My wife must have sent her with that toy, by way of trick, to test me, but I was not aware of this. Then she called her maids again, and three maids came with three roosters like that which I bought for her. She said to me - "You bought me this rooster when I have three of its kind. Well you have broken your vow so I don't want you any more. You may go wherever you like." And she asked her mother to take me away from there. She blindfolded me as usual and left me at my usual place and disappeared. But I went mad after her. When people saw me in this condition they brought me to this madhouse. I am not a maniac, but such is my tale."

The King said to his Minister - "If you will not discover the girl who married this youth, you will pay by your head." The Vazeer was confounded to hear the case of this young man but he could not disobey the Sultaan also. So he asked three days from him, and took the young man with him and left the place. The Sultaan said - "As soon as you find the house, this man will go in and will come out like an ordinary man."

Now the Minister did not know where to go. He went around the streets of the whole city for two days and the third one till noon. The he thought of a way, he asked the youth - "Do you remember the place where the woman used to blindfold you?" He replied, "Yes." and he showed him the place. Then he asked the youth - "Can you recognize the door ring which that woman used to ring?" "Yes, I can." Then the Vazeer went house to house ringing their door bells but the youth said, "No."

Then they came to a door whose bell rang in the same fashion, so the youth cried, "Yes, It is the same." The maids opened the door and the Minister found that the palace belonged to the daughter of the Sultaan who had been succeeded by his Lord. But when the Princess saw the Minister together with her spouse, she adorned herself and came down and greeted with Salaam to him and asked him - "How come you are with this man?" At this he asked her - "What is your business with this young man?"

She told him the story from the beginning till end. The Minister said - "The King has ordered that he should enter and quit this premises as before, as he came here without his eyes being bandaged with the kerchief." She obeyed his command. Such was the history of that youth whom the Sultaan heard reading the Quraan in the Maristaan.

End of Story No 65



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Created by Sushma Gupta on January 15, 2002
Modified on 07/12/14