Khuddadad and His Siblings

Khuddadad and His Siblings :

The king of Damascus had no children. He had three wives. But none could give birth to a child. He consulted many physicians. And he also prayed to God – the Almighty. At last his prayers bore fruits. Two of his wives became pregnant. Each one gave birth to a male baby except the third wife!

It irritated the king. He sent her out of the kingdom. The hapless woman took shelter near the forest. Months later, she became pregnant too and a male child was born to her. This was the only pleasing aspect to her.

She named the child as Khuddadad. She taught him all that he ought to know. He grew up to be a very handsome, intelligent and courageous youth.

One day, he asked his mother, “Why do we live here alone? Don’t we have relatives?”

“It is our fate, my child,” her eyes became wet as she went on to tell everything that had happened. Khuddadad felt sorry for his mother “What a tough time you must have had? Okay, now it is my turn to work hard. I will impress the king and unite you with him. You need not live like this. You are a queen. I will make sure that it happens!”

As a first move, he joined the king’s army. He fought two battles. The other soldiers were amazed at his expertise! He fought like a lion and fetched the victory fruit for the king. It pleased the king. He promoted Khuddadad as a personal body guard to the two princes.

Khuddadad made a private commitment to himself to impart training in the warfare. But the lazy boys were not interested. They preferred to loiter in the forest and hunt down animals. And as a guard, Khuddadad had to escort them.

One day, the three went to a new forest. It was dense. The three camped under a tree. Khuddadad hated to sit idle. He always longed for action. He said, “Look, let me take a swim in the stream. You just hang on here!” Then he raced to the stream and dived into it.

The water was cool and fresh. Khuddadad enjoyed every moment of it. Meanwhile, the two boys wandered off and went to the other part.

Upon returning, Khuddadad was shocked to see them missing! Calling their names, he ran here and there. But there was no trace of them!

“Did any wild animal caught them and dragged them away,” he mused.

But again there was no blood drop or any trace of struggle over there! He rushed to the king and complained.

“It is your carelessness. Your duty is to escort the two princes. But you have failed in your duty. It is a sheer negligence on your part. I am forced to hang you,” declared the king.

“But considering your good deed all these days, I now spare you. I will give you two days time. Fetch my sons or face the death penalty!” the king said curtly and dismissed him with a wave of his hand.

It was a veritable challenge to Khuddadad. He bowed respectably and left. Taking his sword, he ventured into the forest. He was in a wild mood. He went deeply, unmindful of the lurking danger!

Suddenly, he heard a cry behind! He whirled around, his hand yanking out the sword. He saw a very beautiful maiden inside a pit, crying. He went to her and enquired.

“I am the princess of Persia. There is a demon over here. It had caught me and dumped over here. It is too deep that I can’t climb up!" she said sobbing and added, "There is a demon here!”

On hearing it, Khuddadad recoiled in fret. He was ready to risk his life. Just then, he heard a deafening noise. He spun around and saw the demon. It was as big as a house! But having been trained in warfare, Khuddadad reacted instantly!

There was a banyan tree nearby. Its roots were hanging around. Khuddadad jumped, caught a root and swung himself against the demon. At the same moment his right hand pulled out the sword. When he neared the demon, he held the sword straight and pierced its neck!

The demon gave a scream. It echoed around the forest. The next moment, it fell down dead.

“There is a cave. The demon has held many people as prisoners over there,” the princess told him.

Khuddadad dashed to the cave and released all of them including the two princes! The king was pleased. When Khuddadad told him who he was, at once the king went to the place where his third banished queen (mother of Khuddadad) had lived. They were finally united.

“Now we have a duty,” said the king to Khuddadad’s mother, “We have to perform our son’s, I mean the prince’s (Khuddadad) marriage with the princess of Persia who he had rescued!”

Khuddadad and His Siblings

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