Cleverness Pays More – Short Stories

Once upon a time there were two friends John and Tom. Both decided to the King to seek some work. The King put them in charge of his garden. Everyday John and Tom had to water the plants, pull out the weeds, put the manure in the beds and look after the flowers and fruits in the garden. The King observing both the friends. After two months the King increased the salary of Tom. Seeing this John became displeased and was jealous of Tom. He felt that since both were doing the same work, they should be paid the same wages. But he did not know how to tell the King.

One day the King was taking a walk in the garden. Both John and Tom were working. Seeing nobody else was with the king. John made up his mind to speak to the King. He went up to the king and bowed low. “Your majesty, I too worked as hard as Tom. Yet you have not increased my wages. Please tell me why I paid less,” he said boldly.

At that moment, the sound of a music band could be heard nearby.”Go and find out what that noise is” the King told John. Soon he returned saying that a wedding procession was going in the street. The King asked “Whose wedding is it?” John ran out again. Presently he came back and replied “the Zamindar’s son is getting married.”

“To whom is he getting married?” was the King’s next question. John went again and came back panting as the procession had progressed quite a bit. “My Lord, the Head Priest’s daughter is being wedded to the Zamindar’s son” he said.

The King thanked John and then called Tom who was watering the plants on the other side of the garden. “Go and find out what that noise is” The King made the same enquiry to Tom. John was puzzled at the King’s behaviour.

Soon Tom returned and told the King “Your Majesty, that is a wedding procession. The Zamindar’s son is getting married to the Head Priest’s daughter.” He then went to water the plants. The King turned to John and said “Well, now do you understand why Tom is being paid more than you? To answer my question you had to go three times. Tom went only once and gave me all information I required and went back to his work again.”   John hung his head in shame. He could not find any words. He realized his mistake and decided to take more interest in his work.

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