Little Piniki cried silently, sitting behind the tree stump outside his den. Why did those despicable creatures have to be his family? Especially, his father, a living tornado in Piniki’s life who had only minutes ago, given him a spanking for making friends with a prey. ‘I should run away. Now.’
After thinking much, Piniki left his abode. He travelled places and learned many things, sometimes the hard way. But it was better than being with his father.
Piniki finally settled in a forest as he grew old, far from his birthplace, putting miles between himself and his childhood, physically at least. It still haunted his mind, his dreams, his life. Until…
A large bear called Grunt had made the lives of the little animals of Dheemvan like hell. Everyone lived in constant fear of Grunt’s wrath, or worse, his hunger. Which is why when Manchee, a youthful, energetic rabbit hopped out to play, his mother tried to stop him, but in vain.
“Don’t you worry, mother. I’ll be just fine.”
The mother surrendered but not without serving a piece of caution, as mothers are wont to do: “Beware of that monster bear, Grunt.”
As her mother released him, Manchee flew out of his hole, hopping and frolicking, dressing himself with leaves and flowers in a haphazard fashion, putting twigs in his ears and one in his mouth so that whoever saw him, laughed out loud.
By and by, he reached the Dheemvan lake, wanting to play by himself today. Much to his disappointment and curiousity (and a little fear but he wouldn’t admit that), Manchee saw Grunt’s huge figure sitting on a large rock.
The bear looked so quiet that the curious little rabbit couldn’t help trying his luck, and for all he knew, his life.
“Hello, Mr. Grunt”, he spoke out loud.
The bear started in surprise, then grunted and said, “Kid! If you love your hide, get lost and don’t irritate me.”
“I love my hide more than I can express but I also love questions. Here’s one for you. What’s your real name?”
The bear stared, more surprised than annoyed.
“You see, sir”, Manchee continued despite Grunt’s glowering face, “everyone can call me Mr. Talkative or Mr. Questions, but I’ll still be Manchee.”
The bear laughed! Then, he said (without a grunt, one may note), “Clever little sneak, aren’t you?”
“Then, may I know your name, sir?” said Manchee in his charming way he so frequently used to get away from the scoldings of adults, especially his mother.
And so the two talked (much to the horror of Manchee’s mother; other mothers will be able to understand) until the sun splashed, dissolving its and yellow ink in water. And Pinaki finally set his past where it belonged- in the past.
Moral- Sometimes, all one needs is a comfortable company. Don’t form prejudices against people by some of their outward actions. They may have a harsh story as the backdrop of their harsh personalities.
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