The Forest - II

Chutki Stories Jul 25, 2021

(link to Part I)

Chutki, Ishika, Ramesh, and their pets were gathered under the Pipal tree. The three children were wearing the mysterious lockets they had received in the forest the day before.

"I could barely sleep last night. I was so excited! I kept checking around my neck to make sure it hadn't vanished", Ishika said.

Chutki was jumping with excitement. "Me too! After my family slept, I was examining it for a long time," she said.

"I kept my locket hidden, and I asked my daadi to tell me about the legends of the forest", said the ever sensible Ramesh.

"What are you waiting for? Tell us what she said!" Chutki exclaimed.

Ramesh replied, "I will. But Chutki, did you give Pintu a piece of chalk recently?"

"I did. Baba had given us a box of chalk to draw with this morning. Pintu grabbed a piece too. Why?" asked Chutki.

"Well, Chutki, Pintu seems to think Nandu is a blackboard", said Ramesh dryly. He pointed to the little monkey who was out of Chutki's view and using the piece of chalk to scribble on the buffalo calf. Chutki went red and called Pintu away. He jumped on her shoulder and played with one of her pigtails.

"Oh! Enough about Pintu and Nandu. Tell us what your grandmother said!" said Ishika impatiently.

Ramesh assumed an air of importance and cleared his throat. He began his story, "Once upon a time, this sleepy little village of ours was part of a great kingdom. For many years the kingdom was ruled by a powerful, kind ruler. He took good care of his subjects well and defeated all enemies. His son was a selfish man who was often cruel to the subjects. So, the King banished the Prince from the kingdom. The King declared that his daughter, the Princess, would rule after him.

"After the King died, the Princess took the throne. She was as kind and just as her father. She was also a great devotee of Lakshmi and Vishnu, the presiding deities of this temple. The Prince returned one day. He convinced his sister that he had changed his ways. The Princess allowed him back into the palace and made him the chief of her bodyguards and an advisor.

"One day, during the temple festival, thousands of devotees gathered at the temple. The Prince attacked his sister, but she defeated him easily. However, the Prince had other plans. He had secretly brought in some enemy soldiers. The Prince threatened to harm the devotees gathered there unless the Princess gave up the throne. She agreed to do so if he promised not to harm anyone. Leaving her crown, jewels and weapons behind, the Princess went into the forest to spend the rest of her life in prayer. Fearful of the Prince, no one stopped her."

Ishika was furious. "What? What cowards! How could they let the Prince rule over them like that?" she said.

"Look, we don't know what the Prince threatened to do! Still, the story says that the murti of Vishnu disappeared from the temple that day. It is said that the Princess spent the rest of her life in the forest. Vishnu appeared there to be with his devotee".

"Is that the murti we saw?" asked Chutki in excitement.

Ramesh replied, "Well, I could obviously not tell my daadi that we saw the murti. So I asked her if the murti was ever found. Daadi told me that no one ever saw it again. But the legend says that Lord Vishnu is visible to some people. And those who can see Him are blessed by Him with special powers".

"What sort of powers?" asked Chutki. But Ramesh did not know. The three children held their lockets and thought silently.

To be continued…

Dear Readers,

Some of you have told me that you wanted to submit your story but exams are in the way. Don't worry. Let's wait for your exams to be done. Please send in your submissions via email to You can send me writing, art or an audio clip. I will post them all next week.

Every submission will receive a free printed copy of the story of their choice. So please do send your postal address and favourite story when you send your submissions.

I can't wait to hear from you all!

Sambhavi Aunty


The Purplebean
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