Nine Color Deer
“Once upon a time, there was a magnificent looking deer, the rarest one could find: its coat had nine colours, and its antlers were as the snow. It lived by the Ganges River with a crow as his friend.
One day, a man fell into the river and, in great fright, he yelled for help. Without much thought and regard for its own safety, the Deer of Nine Colours jumped into the water and saved him. The man was so grateful that he offered to be its slave and servant. The deer only wanted him not to disclose where it lived to avoid being hunted down and killed.
That night, at Royal Palace, the Queen had a dream: she saw a magnificent deer with a cost of nine colours and white antlers. It was the rarest animal one could find. She woke up and the deer she saw in her dream was firmly in her mind. She began to yearn for it, wanting to use its beautiful coat to sit on, and its snowy white antlers to make the handle of dusters. She pined for it so much that she told the King either he sent someone to catch it and bring it back to her, or she would die. In order to please his queen, the King decreed that anybody who could tell the whereabouts of the Deer of Nine Colours would be hugely rewarded.
The man who saved by the deer heard about it, and vicious greed rose in his heart. He thought, “That deer is just an animal. Does it matter if it lives or dies?” So he presented the information to the King. But as soon as he had done that, his face broke out in painful boils and sores. He still did not realise his mistake and brought the King’s army to the banks in order to hunt down the deer.
The deer saw them coming. It said to the King with dignity and grace, “ You should not kill me. I have served your country well. Your Majesty, this man fell into deep water a few days ago, and was going to be drowned had I not thrown myself into the river, carried him on my back and brought him to safety. I did that at the risk of my own life. It is very ungrateful of him to do this to me.”
The deer’s words rang with righteous truth, so much so that the King was ashamed of ever wanting to kill it. He admonished the man and said, “ You owe this deer your life, so how can you repay it by wanting it killed?”
Then, the King made a national decree that the deer was to be protected by law and should not suffer any harm. From then on, the country enjoyed clement weather, bumper harvests, and peace all over the land. His subjects also enjoyed a happy life, free from all illnesses and cares.
The moral of the story is that those with a good heart will be rewarded with goodness, and those with avarice and greed will be punished by inflictions.