Shishu Sansaar | Arabian Nights Stories-4

Arabian Nights Stories-4

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Story No 79-1/3

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79-1 - Uns Al-Vajood and the Vazeer's Daughter Al-Vard Fil-Akmaam (1 of 3) :
Rose is in Love

Once there was a King who was very mighty. His Vazeer's name was Ibraaheem and he had an extraordinarily beautiful and brilliant daughter - Ar-Vard fil-Akmaam. She loved drinking, verses and rare stories. Her name was Rose-in-Hood, and she was so named for her young and tender beauty. The King loved to keep her in his company because of her fine manners.

Now it was the King's annual custom to gather together all the nobles of the kingdom and play with the ball (polo). So when the day came, the Vazeer's daughter seated to see the game at her lattice and as the men were playing ball, her glance fell on a youth among the guards who was also very handsome. She looked at him again and again for he showed his white teeth while smiling, he had a tall stature and broad shoulders. So she asked her nurse - "Who is this young man? What is his name?" She said - "O Dear, All the young men here are from troops. Which of them you are asking for?" Rose said - "Wait till he comes here, then I will point him out to you." She took an apple and as he rode by, she dropped it on him. He immediately raised his head to see who did this to him and saw the Vazeer's daughter at the window. She was shining like a moon. He lost his heart to her at the very same moment.

When the game had finished and all had left the ground, she asked her nurse again - "What is the name of that youth I showed to you." "His name is Uns al-Vajood." She lay down on her couch and sighed deeply for her love. She wrote some verse too on a sheet of paper which she folded in a piece of gold embroidered silk and kept it under her pillow.

One of her nurses saw this, so she came up to her and talked to her till she had slept. Then she stole the scroll from under her pillow and after reading it knew that she had fallen in love with Uns al-Vajood. She kept the scroll back at its place. When Rose got up, she said to her - "I am your true counselor. Know that love is a fire which can melt even iron and entails sickness and unease." Rose asked her - "And what is the medicine of passion?" "Its medicine is enjoyment." Rose asked her - "And how one gets enjoyment?" She replied by writing letters, sending messages and by greetings before the world. All these things bring lovers together and make hard matters easy to communicate. So if you have something in your heart, I am the fittest person to keep your secret."

When Rose heard this, her reason flew, but she controlled herself till she should make sure, she said to herself - "Till now none knows about this, nor will I trust this one with my secret, till I have tried her." The nurse said to her - "I saw in my dream that a man came to me and said - "Your mistress and Uns al-Wujood love each other so you serve them by carrying their messages and keeping their secrets." I have told you my vision, now it is you to decide."

Rose said - "Can't you keep a secret?" She answered - "And how should I not keep the secrecy, I am the flower of the tree." Then Rose pulled out the scroll from under her pillow, on which she wrote the verses and gave it to the nurse saying - "Carry this letter to Uns al-Vajood and bring me his reply." The nurse took the letter and went to Uns al-Vajood, kissed his hands, greeted him courteously and gave him the paper. He read it and wrote back some verses on the back of that paper. Then he folded the paper, kissed it and gave it to the nurse to give it to her mistress. She took it and gave it to Rose, Rose read it and wrote some verses at the foot of those verses. She also folded the paper and gave it to her nurse to give it to Uns al-Vajood.

Now when the nurse was taking the paper, she met an officer and he asked her - "Where are you going?" "To the bath." But in her fear and confusion, she dropped the letter unknowingly and went off without thinking what she had done. One of the eunuchs saw it lying in the way so he picked it up. When the nurse came to the door, she sought for it but could not find it, so she turned back to her mistress and told her about this.

Meanwhile the Vazeer came out of the Haram and seated himself on a couch, that the eunuch who had picked up the letter, came in holding it in his hand and said - "O Lord, I found this paper lying upon the floor and picked it up." The Vazeer took it, opened it, and read the verses written on it. He understood their meaning, then he examined the writing and knew that it was his daughter's. So he went to her mother and wept a lot. His wife asked him - "Why are you weeping so much?" He handed over that letter to her. She took it and found it to be a love letter in her daughter Rose's handwriting to Uns al-Vajood.

She composed herself and said to her husband - "There is no use to weep. The right course is to keep your honor and conceal the affair of you daughter." And she went on comforting him. He said - "I fear for my daughter because of this new passion, because you do not know that the Sultaan loves Uns al-Vajood very much, and my fear has two causes: first is for myself, it is that she is my daughter; and the second is because of the King, that Uns al-Vajood is favorite of Sultaan, and great troubles may come out of this affair. What do you say we should do?" She said - "Have patience till I pray for the right direction."

So she prayed a two-bow prayer to seek Divine guidance. After that she said to her husband - "In the midst of the Sea of Treasures, there stands a mountain named the Mount of Bereaved Mother, and nobody can go there without suffering pains, distress and difficulties. You leave your daughter there."

Accordingly the Vazeer and his wife agreed to build a virgin castle to lodge their daughter with necessary provision to be renewed each year and attendants to serve her. So they gathered carpenters, builders and architects and dispatched them to the mountain where they built an impregnable castle never seen before. Then he made carriers ready for journey and going in to his daughter by night asked her to proceed on a pleasure trip.

Hearing this Rose became sad because of separation and wrote upon the door some verses, so that her lover could know what has befallen on her which would make the flesh to shiver, hair to stare and hardest stone to melt and cause every eye to tear. After writing this she mounted and they set forward with her till they came to the shore of the Sea of Treasures. Here they pitched their tents and built a great ship to take her to that mountain. When they had reached the mountain, the Vazeer asked his people to set his daughter in the castle and come back to the shore where they would breakup the vessel. They wept over what had befallen on them.

Uns al-Vajood rose in the morning and prayed his morning prayer, after which he took his horse and went to the Sultaan. On the way he passed by the Vazeer's house and he saw the verses written on the door by Rose. Reading them, his senses failed him and he came back home where he passed his day in excessive grief. As the night fell, he disguised himself in the rags of a Faqeer and set out to wander in the night. He wandered all night and till the Sun spread his heat all over. He saw a tree beside a stream of cool water. He drank water and sat down under the shade of the tree.

Then he again rose and wandered around till an extraordinary lion came upon him. He gave himself up and turning towards the Temple of Makkaa. He started reciting prayers usually read before death. He had read somewhere in the books that if one flatters the lion, he can cheat him. So he started saying - "O Lion of the forest, O Lord of the waste, O Terrible Leo, I am a lover longing for my beloved, I have lost my reasoning, that is why you hear my speech and be kind to me." When the lion heard this, he drew back and sat on his hind legs, raised his head and began to move his tail and paws.

Seeing this Uns al-Vajood read some verses. When he had finished them the lion rose, licked him with his tongue and walked on before him as if he was asking him to follow him. So he followed him and they came upon a mountain and he took him to the farthest side of the mountain where he came upon a caravan track over the desert, and knew it to be that of Rose and her company. He took the trail and the lion after making sure that he was following the track, went away. Uns al-Vajood continued walking along the foot marks till he came to dashing sea. The foot marks had disappeared after this point so he understood that they took the ship from here. So he lost hope and read some couplets.

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Created by Sushma Gupta on January 15, 2002
Modified on 07/13/14