Two Friends

Only face is the introduction of a man.

As Vikramaaditya walked away from the tree, Vaitaal again started speaking – “Listen now, and do not be angry. Your justice is very good that is why I like to talk to you, it increases my knowledge.” Vikram didn’t say a word and continued to walk. Vaitaal also continued his talking, he said – “Now I tell you a story just to pass time, listen to it and do justice.” Vaitaal started his story and Vikram started listening.

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Vaitaal said – “There lived a rich man in Ujjayinee Nagaree. He had only one son. His name was Gandharvsen. He was very handsome, like a prince. He used to go to city riding on a horse. Many girls were attracted to him, but he didn’t like any of them. By chance, one day he went to that side of city where washermen were washing the clothes. Suddenly he saw a girl who was washing her clothes with full attention. He instantly fell in love with her. He gazed at her for a few moments, then sat on the steps of a nearby temple. He sat there till sunset. All washermen had gone from there after loading their clothes on donkeys.

Gandharvsen got very sad. Then he got up and said to Devee in the temple, “If I am married to this girl, I will offer my head to you after one month.” And he came back to his home. He was not able to forget that girl even for a moment. He fell sick. His family got worried about him. Several Vaidya (traditional doctors) came to see him but nobody was able to identify any disease.

He had a good childhood friend. His name was Devdatt. He also got worried seeing his condition. He asked him the reason of his sadness. Then he told everything to him. Devdatt went to the father of that girl and talked to him. He got very happy with this proposal. The girl, whose name was Roopmatee, told that she also liked him but was helpless. Hey Vikram, Thus Gandharvsen and Roopmatee got married. Gandharvsen loved Roopmatee so much that he did not allow her to go anywhere even for a moment.

Thus one month had passed. Gandharvsen remembered his vow taken in the temple, so after one month he came to the temple along with Devdatt and Roopmatee. He asked them to wait outside and he alone went inside the temple. He cut his head and offered it in the feet of Devee. When he did not come out of the temple for some time Devdatt and Roopmatee got worried. Devdatt went inside and got stunned seeing the severed head of his friend.

He thought, if he tells this to others, they will think that Devdatt himself has killed Gandharvsen to get Roopmatee, so he also cut his head and offered in Devee’s feet. Seeing this sacrifice, Devee appeared and she joined both the heads to both the bodies, but in hurry, she made a mistake. She joined Gandharvsen’s head to Devdatt’s body and Devdatt’s head to Gandharvsen’s body. Thus both were alive but with different bodies.

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Now you tell Vikram, to whom Roopmatee should choose as her husband? If she chooses Gandharvsen as her husband, will she be not a sinner?”

Vikram got silent hearing Vaitaal. He was walking fast and he had held him tightly. Then he said – “Listen O Vaitaal, Roopmatee should select only that body on which Gandharvsen’s face has been joined .” “Will it not be a sin?” “No, It will not be a sin, because only face is the introduction of a person, only face shows the feelings of a person, that is why Gandharvsen’s face is very important. This body is the slave of eyes. Whatever they will say, the body will do the same. In this way Roopmatee will get the love of Gandharvsen only, if she will marry the body on which Gandharvsen’s face was joined.”

Hearing Vikram, Vaitaal said – “You are right Vikram, only face gives the introduction of a person.” Saying this Vaitaal again laughed heartily and ran away from the king’s shoulder and hung upside down from the same tree. The king Vikramaaditya again got very angry at this. He followed him taking out his sword, took him from the tree, put him on his shoulder and started walking.

He said to him – “If you will run away this time, I will cut your neck.” Vaitaal spoke softly – “Don’t be so angry, O Vikram. You are very courageous. And you are a just king, that is why I want to gain some knowledge from you.” He was speaking and Vikram was listening.

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