Once upon a time, there lived a stork by the side of a tank. There were plenty of fish in the tank and the stork always had a full meal. As the years passed, the stork grew old and found it difficult to catch fish for food. Sometimes, he would be hungry for days.
The stork thought of a plan. He stood by the tank with a sad look on his face. He did not attempt to catch any fish. The fish, frogs and crabs in the tank noticed and asked him what the matter was.
“I have heard that some humans will soon fill this tank and grow crops over it.” There will not be any fish left alive. This makes me sad”, replied the stork. The fish were very worried and asked the stork to help them.
The stork offered to take all of them to a bigger tank some distance away. But since he was old, he would need to rest between trips and would be able to carry only a few fish at a time. Saying this he set out on his first trip taking a few fish in his beak. However, he did not go to another tank. Instead he took them to a bog rock and ate them there. Each time he was hungry he would take a trip with a few more fishes.
A crab was left in the tank. He also wanted to save himself and requested the stork to take him also. The stork felt he could try a different meal for a change. He agreed to take the crab.
The stork flew up with him. After a while, the crab looked down to see the tank where he was going to, but all he could see was dry land.
“Uncle, where is the big tank you are taking me to?” he asked.
The stork laughed and pointed to a rock below. There were heaps of fish-bones on the rock. The crab realized that he was going to be the stork’s next meal. He thought quickly of a way to save himself. The crab dug his sharp claws into the stork’s neck and did not let go till the stork fell down dead. He then cut off the stork’s head and dragged it to the tank he lived in. There he told everyone how the stork had been cheating everyone and how he had killed him.
(Story Source: Stories from Panchatantra. Image from Creative Commons)
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