Baddy, the fox was very naughty. He loved pulling pranks on people and would tell them things that weren’t true. He was so good at telling these lies that everybody believed him.
One day, as he was coming back from the market, he saw Meeku, the mouse on his way to school. Exam results were to be announced that day and Baddy decided to have some fun.
“Meeku, I’ve been looking for you. I just spoke to your teacher. She said you’ve failed in your exams,” said Baddy, the fox.
“What? Oh no! I thought I had done well this time!” said Meeku disappointedly.
“Well, I wish I could tell you more but this is all I know,” said Baddy and walked on. He turned to watch Meeku run to school and laughed.
The next day, Soni, the cow was happily munching on some grass on a meadow. Baddy decided to play a prank on her and said, “Soni! There you are! I’ve been looking all over for you. I just heard that your house is on fire.”
“What? Oh no! Everything I own is in that house,” cried Soni and ran home.
When Soni reached her home, she was out of breath. She was relieved to see that her house was still fine, but was angry at Baddy for playing such a prank on her. She tried telling the other animals of the forest about Baddy, but nobody really felt as strongly about this matter as she did.
A few more days passed and Baddy saw Cheeku, the rabbit and Jumpy, the monkey walking down the street. He thought it did be great fun to play a trick on them. Baddy went up to Cheeku and said, “’Cheeku, Cheeku. Quickly, you have to go home. I just saw a few masked thieves enter your house!”
Shocked, Cheeku and Jumpy ran to Cheeku’s home. When they got there, they saw that everything was intact and there were no thieves as such. They understood that Baddy had just played a prank on them. Cheeku was determined to teach Baddy a lesson.
Baddy was making lunch when his doorbell rang. When he opened the door, it was Inspector Jumbo, the elephant. Seeing him, Baddy became a little nervous and somehow managed to ask him what the matter was.
“Cheeku, the rabbit has accused you of robbing his home. You are under arrest.” said Jumbo “Inspector, I don’t know what you’re talking about. I didn’t rob anyone. I’m innocent,” said Baddy.
Jumbo asked, “Did you or did you not tell Cheeku that there were masked men entering his house?”
Baddy replied, “ Yes, but I didn’t mean to.”
Before Baddy could finish, Jumbo put the handcuffs on his wrists and said, “That’s all I need to hear. Come with me to the station. We’ll sort it all out over there.”
More from Champak: Naughty Baddy Gets Caught
When Baddy was lead into the police station with handcuffs on his wrists, Cheeku exclaimed, “There he is! He’s the robber!”
Baddy had never been more scared in his life. He was made to sit in the interrogation room and was questioned.
“Baddy, unless you want to be put behind bars, confess and return everything you stole from Cheeku’s house,” said Jumbo.
“Inspector, I didn’t steal anything,” said Baddy.
“Did you not tell Cheeku that a couple of masked robbers were at his home?” asked Jumbo.
“Yes, but I was just kidding,” said Baddy.
“I don’t care whether you were kidding or not. You were the one who told me that my home was being robbed. So you must know who they were or have a hand in the robbery. You are the one who has to take the responsibility,” said Cheeku.
“Are you saying your house was really robbed?” asked Baddy. He was shaking uncontrollably with fear. “Sir, I really don’t know what’s going on. Please let me go. I didn’t steal anything from Cheeku’s home.”
Baddy began to cry and Inspector Jumbo, the elephant turned to Cheeku.
Cheeku was trying hard not to laugh. Seeing him, Inspector Jumbo began laughing too. Baddy was confused.
“It seems like you’ve understood the consequences of lying,” said Jumbo.
“Yes Sir, I have. I promise never to lie again. I promise never to play pranks on anyone,” said Baddy.
They let him go and Baddy never lied again.
Jumbo elephant loved eating sugarcane. He had planted the sweetest sugarcane plants in his farm and enjoyed sharing sugarcane and its juice with all his neighbours and guests.
One day when Jumbo went to the farm, he was shocked to see sugarcane stalks fallen on the ground. He looked around carefully, but found no sign of anyone entering and walking around the farm.
Next morning, some more of the sugarcane stalks were on the ground. Every night someone entered the farm and broke some of the stalks.
Jumbo started putting a big lock on the door of his farm and the boundary wall around his farm was very high. It was not possible for anyone to jump over and come inside but each morning Jumbo saw that sugarcane stalks were broken.
This troubled Jumbo a lot. On many nights he kept awake and guarded the house, but he did not see anyone going towards his farm. In the morning he found the sugarcane stalks broken and on the ground.
One day, poor Jumbo mentioned this to his friend Jumpy monkey. Jumpy said, “This seems to be the work of a ghost.”
“Why will a ghost break the sugarcane?” Jumbo said, not believing Jumpy.
“If a ghost is not breaking the plants, then is the wind breaking them?” Jumpy replied.
“You have stayed awake the whole night and guarded the stalks. You saw no one come or go, and still the stalks were broken in the morning. This clearly means that it is the work of ghosts, because no one can see them if they do not wish to be seen,” Jumpy continued.
On hearing this, Jumbo got frightened. He started getting afraid to go in the direction of his farm even during the day.
One day Cheeku rabbit came to visit him. Jumbo always offered Cheeku sugarcane juice, but that day he did not do so.
Cheeku found this unusual and asked his friend, “What is the matter Jumbo? You look troubled today. I am also missing the sweet sugarcane juice that you always offer.”
“Don’t mention sugarcane,” Jumbo said, looking sad.
“Why?” asked Cheeku. “You were always so proud of the sugarcane you grew.”
“Ghosts have invaded my sugarcane farm.
Every night they come and break many of my sugarcane stalks. I have stopped going to the farm out of fear,” Jumbo explained to Cheeku.
“Jumbo, you are so intelligent. Why do you still you talk like this? There are no ghosts. They are only exist in our minds and stories,” Cheeku tried to explain.
“If there are no ghosts, then who is breaking my sugarcane?” asked Jumbo.
When Cheeku heard the details, his face became serious. He did not believe in ghosts. “But who is breaking them without being seen?” Cheeku thought to himself and decided to find out.
After thinking for a while Cheeku said, “I am going to spend the night in your farm today and try to find out who breaks the sugarcane.”
“Oh no, I cannot put your life in danger,” said Jumbo who was worried.
Cheeku pleaded to Jumbo and at night he hid behind a tree in the farm.
Around midnight, he heard a faint sound. He could not see anyone. Soon, one of the stalks fell. And after some time another one. Cheeku too started feeling afraid. He was sure there were no spirits and ghosts, but something was there. He tiptoed towards the sound. When he reached close to the spot, he heard the sound of someone chewing something.
Then, he noticed Meeku rat chewing at the base of a sugarcane stalk.
“So you are the sugarcane ghost!” said Cheeku angrily.
When Meeku heard Cheeku’s voice, he tried to run away but Cheeku sprang and caught him. He thundered, “Tell me quickly! Why have you been breaking Jumbo’s sugarcane?”
“I’ll tell you. I’ll tell you. First leave me,” said Meeku, panting.
“Very smart. If I leave you, you will run away,” said Cheeku. Then relaxing his hold slightly, Cheeku said, “Come, tell me now. Why are you doing this?”
“I was living here happily with my family. Then one day Jumbo trampled and broke my house with his huge and heavy feet. I have been breaking his sugarcane to take revenge for that,” said Meeku with a long sigh.
“When did I break your house?” asked Jumbo as he reached the scene on hearing the noise.
“You had come here to take sugarcane to give juice to your guests,” said Meeku. He was frightened and sure that Jumbo would trample on him and break his bones.
But instead of being angry, Jumbo said sorrowfully, “My friend, I must have trampled your house by mistake. I am very sorry and beg your pardon.”
“You called me ‘friend’!” said Meeku, surprised. He could not believe that such a huge elephant was asking for forgiveness and not punishing him.
“Yes, we all are friends. We should live together with love and not take revenge on one another,” said Jumbo. Then after thinking for a while he said, “I will make a hole in the soil with my long and strong teeth. You can make your house in the hole and live happily again.”
“Thank you Jumbo but we have already made a new house,” Meeku said.
“Oh it is nice to hear that!” said Jumbo.
“But what I have done was not right. I should be punished for it,” said Meeku. Seeing Jumbo’s nobility, he felt very sorry for his act.
“Yes, you should get the punishment,” Jumbo closed his eyes for a while and then said, “Your punishment is to taste all the plants in this garden and tell me which one is the sweetest.”
Then Jumbo added, “Cheeku has found the sugarcane ghost. I want to reward him with the juice of the sweetest plant.”
On hearing this, Meeku went in the farm joyfully. After some time his voice was heard, “Dear Jumbo, this plant is the sweetest.”
Jumbo quickly went and got that stalk. He squeezed the juice and offered it to both his friends. All felt very happy.
Cheeku was a naughty rabbit. He lived in Champakvan. He played the whole day. He spent the day eating juicy, red carrots. He had become round and chubby. Whenever Baddy the fox saw him, he felt tempted to eat Cheeku.
However, Cheeku knew that Baddy wanted to eat him. Therefore, he stayed away from him. Cheeku spent most of his time hiding in the bushes or playing.
One day, Cheeku was sitting near a mucky pond. He was happily enjoying carrots when he saw Baddy coming towards him. He did not have enough time to escape. So he thought of an alternate plan.
He entered the mucky pond. He covered himself with muck. He applied dirt to his entire body and face. His entire body, except his eyes, was muddy. He looked like a brown lump with red eyes. Instead of running away, he sat in a corner of the mucky pond.
Just then Baddy arrived. He felt that Cheeku was around. He searched for Cheeku in the bushes. However he couldn’t find him. He did not have the slightest idea that Cheeku was hiding in the pond.
Cheeku thought that Baddy would go away as he had not found him in the bushes. However, Baddy came towards the pond. He was thirsty. He wanted to quench his thirst. Cheeku got scared knowing that if Baddy found him, he would definitely kill him.
Cheeku was a smart fellow. He never gave up easily. He started thinking about what he should do next.
He shouted at Baddy, “You strange animal! Who are you? How dare you come near my pond to drink water? Don’t you know who I am?”
Baddy gazed around. He realised that the sound was coming from a small creature that was half sunk inside the pond. Its eyes were a dangerous red in color. He was stunned to see such a weird creature talking to him.
No one had ever spoken to him in such a manner.
Baddy replied in a nervous tone, “Sir, I have come to drink water from this pond. I was totally unaware that you own this pond. I have never seen you before. May I please drink water from your pond?”
“No,” said Cheeku. He added, “You can drink water from my pond on one condition.”
Baddy was very thirsty. He couldn’t wait to go elsewhere to drink water. He said, “What is the condition, Sir?”
Cheeku said, “I don’t know who you are, but let me introduce myself. I am the King of Muck.”
Baddy became nervous when he heard the word ‘King’. He had seen the Lion who is the king of the jungle. However, he had never heard of the King of Muck. He was surprised to meet another king. He thought that a Lion staying in muck is known as the King of Muck’.
Baddy was deep in thought.
Suddenly Cheeku shouted, “Listen to me carefully. I ate a big fat rabbit a while ago. However, I am not satisfied with it. I did not like its taste.”
Baddy was now very frightened. He was sure that this king had eaten Cheeku since he was around a while ago. He was surprised that he did not like the taste of a rabbit.
He said, “Sir. Rabbits are very tasty. How come you did not like its taste?”
Cheeku replied, “My brother, who stays in the jungle, had come to meet me yesterday. He brought a few pieces of fox’s meat for me. That meat was so delicious. After eating that meat, I don’t like any other type of flesh.”
Hearing this, a chill ran down Baddy’s spine. He started shivering in fear. He thought that if the King of Muck realised that he was a Fox, then he would get killed. He started thinking of ways to escape from there.
“I want to eat a fox,” said Cheeku. “There might be foxes in this forest. You have to get me and my friends a few foxes. I want to treat my friends. They will arrive in a couple of minutes. You can drink water from my pond only after you get me some foxes.”
By now, Baddy was sweating and trembling. He thought that if the king’s friends came to the pond they might recognise him. Then, they would tear him apart and feast on him. He realised that it was thus best to run away from the pond at the earliest.
Baddy said, “Sir, there are a lot of foxes in this jungle. I shall quickly go and fetch a few for you and your friends. I will be right back with some delicious food for you.”
He began to walk away.
Cheeku said, “I am not in a hurry at all. Tell me your name before you leave.” Baddy replied, “I do not have that much time, Sir. First, let me get some foxes for you. Then, I will sit and chat with you.” Baddy ran away never to return. Cheeku laughed at Baddy’s foolishness. He walked to the nearest river. He washed his body and removed all the muck and dirt.
Cheeku now breathed a sigh of relief. He felt proud of his intellect as it helped him get to rid of Baddy.