The Lost Sword – Short Stories

In a village there lived a Zamindar. Once he went to buy a pair of bullocks at a fair and found that he was short of five hundred rupees. So he went to a pawn-broker’s shop and asked if he could borrow five hundred rupees. The moneylender replied that unless he pawned something he would not get any money.

The Zamindar said that he did not have anything with him at that moment, but if given the money, he would return it very soon. The moneylender did not agree with this. At last the Zamindar took out an old rusty sword.”Look here, my good man. This sword is very precious to me. It has been handed down from my forefathers. Keep this with you carefully and give me money. You can return the sword to me when I come back with the money.” Saying this Zamindar handed over the sword. The moneylender then gave him five hundred rupees and the Zamindar went away.

Months passed and the Zamindar who had taken the money did not return at all. Nor he did pay any interest. The moneylender became worried and decided that he should plan carefully to get his money back. One day moneylender went to a barber. As the barber was giving him a cut, the moneylender began to speak “I’ll tell you something in confidence. The Zamindar of this village had taken five hundred rupees from me. Till now he hasn’t paid one paise interest also. I too haven’t asked him for my money. Do you want to know why? Because I have lost the sword which he had pawned with me. If he comes with my money, I do not have his sword with me. But do not tell this to anyone.”

The barber immediately went to the Zamindar’s house and as he was attending on the Zamindar, the barber related all that the moneylender had told him. Hearing this, the Zamindar became very happy. He thought his five hundred rupees and the interest would be safe and he would not have to repay it. So the Zamindar collected together five hundred rupees plus interest and went to the pawn-broker’s shop.

“Take your money and the interest for all these months. Give my sword back” he told the moneylender. Smiling inwardly the moneylender replied “Oh, what can I say sir. The sword which you have left with me is lost. What shall I do now?” Hearing this Zamindar pretended to be very angry. “What did you say? You lost it? I told you it was my ancestral sword and I would take it back when I returned the money to you. The sword should store in our family. Go and look for it once again.” He shouted at the moneylender.

“Alright, I will search once more” said the moneylender and went through a door which led to his house. He took out the sword which he had carefully locked in an iron box and brought it out. The Zamindar could not believe his eyes. It was his own sword. There was no doubt about it. Seeing no other go, he paid the moneylender his money, took his rusty, useless sword and returned home. The moneylender was happy that his little plan had been successful and he touched the money to his eyes and locked it up in a safe.

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