Pied Piper of Hamelin

Pied Piper of Hamelin :

Hamelin was a small town in Germany. It was infested with rats. Rats ruled Hamelin. They were in houses, inns, shops, schools and in every street. It was a menace and a solution had to be found fast.

The mayor had often held meetings with the town folks to discuss this problem. In the beginning they had thought that cats would drive away the mice. But since there were so many rats, the people of Hamelin could not find the same number of cats. They were in a dilemma.

One day, a stranger came to the town of Hamelin. He carried with him a flute. He had a stern look on his face and walked straight to the mayor’s building.

He faced the mayor of Hamelin and said, “It is well known around Germany that Hamelin has a problem with rats. I will get rid of all the rats. What would my reward be?”

For a moment the mayor was stunned. Here was a strange looking man come from, it seemed nowhere, who promised to get rid of Hamelin’s biggest problem.

“Ten Thousand gold coins from our treasury if you can do as you promise,” said the mayor.

The stranger nodded his head in agreement and said, “In a day’s time Hamelin will have no rats.”

The stranger walked out into the street, pulled out his flute and started playing it. An eerie sound floated in the air. It carried far to every corner of Hamelin. The people of Hamelin were paralysed hearing this enchanting tone.

All of a sudden, there was a ‘whirring’ noise. It was the rats. They came from all directions. Hundreds of thousands of them….They followed the eerie sound that came from the Piper’s flute. It seemed the rats were mesmerized. The stranger headed to the sea, with all the rats of Hamelin behind him. It was an extraordinary sight for the folks of Hamelin.

The stranger continuing to play the flute walked right into the sea. The rats followed him and before they knew it, the rats were caught by the waves and dragged into the sea. All the rats of Hamelin drowned. The strange piper had got rid of all the rats just like he had promised.

The stranger approached the mayor for his reward. The mayor and the town’s people rejoiced at the miracle the stranger had performed. But the mayor had changed his mind about rewarding the stranger ten thousand gold coins.

Instead when the stranger came he said, “It is a wonderful task you have accomplished. But isn’t ten thousand gold coins a hefty reward for a day’s work. I will pay you five hundred gold coins”.

The stranger looked at the mayor and then walked out. In the street he pulled out his flute again and started playing it. This time the sound that came from the flute was different but no less eerie. All the children of Hamelin started to follow the stranger.

The stranger walked out of town and disappeared into the mountains with the children following him.

The parents of the children wept. “Where had the stranger taken their children?”

They went to complain to the mayor. The mayor was helpless. He knew he had been dishonest with the stranger.

The stranger returned to Hamelin but without the children. The mayor ran to him, begging for forgiveness and pleaded with him to get the children back. Without a word the stranger turned and walked away. He returned after a few hours, this time with all the children.

The stranger was rewarded his ten thousand gold coins. The mayor had learnt his lesson.

Pied Piper of Hamelin

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Pied Piper of Hamelin
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