Friendship on earth

Friendship is such a strange and wonderful thing! When friendship is formed in Heaven, it never dies. On earth, friendship dies before it even takes birth. This is the difference between friendship in Heaven and friendship on earth.

This story is about two village friends. One of them borrowed twenty rupees from the other to buy a dog. He went to the bazaar and chose a dog that he liked. Unfortunately, after a month had passed, the dog fell ill and died. Now it happened that this fellow was supposed to return the twenty rupees to his friend at the end of the month, but he kept postponing and postponing his obligation.

Finally, the friend to whom he owed the money came to his house to collect it. He was saved because his wife answered the door and said that he was not at home. The friend came back the next day and the next, but the answer was always the same: “He is out.”

Now a third friend entered the picture. He knew that the rogue-friend was deliberately avoiding the one who had given him the loan. So he said to the rogue-friend’s wife, “This time when our friend comes to collect what you owe him, I am going to inform him that your husband is at home. Then you will be in serious trouble. So the best thing is to return the money.”

The wife cried, “Please, please, do not tell him! Here — I am giving you one rupee as a bribe.”

So the third friend accepted the bribe and went away. The next day he appeared again and made the same threat. Once more, the wife gave him one rupee as a bribe. Like this, twenty more times he came and twenty more times he received money from the wife to remain silent. Each time the loan-giver came to collect his money, the wife said the same thing: “He is out.”

One day, fortunately or unfortunately, the friend who had given the loan and the one who had received it met face to face on the road. Their meeting was unavoidable. The fellow who had borrowed the money became extremely frightened. In a pitiful voice, he began pleading, “Please, please, give me another chance! This time when you come to my house, I will definitely be there and I will give you the full amount.”

“I have already received the money,” said his friend, smiling.

“How is it possible?” asked the rogue.

“Our mutual friend has given it to me,” said the friend.

“Surely you are pulling my leg!” said the rogue.

“Not at all,” answered the friend. “Every day he threatened your wife that he would inform me that you were actually at home when she said you were out. So she started giving him one rupee after another as a bribe. Eventually, he was able to pay me the complete sum: twenty rupees. And he also earned a commission!”