The Toilet Fund

Champakvan jungle was celebrating World Toilet Day on November 19. All the animals had gathered at King Shersingh’s palace.

“Today, we celebrate World Toilet Day to understand hygiene and sanitation. I wish everyone in our jungle constructs a toilet in their home so that no one has to do potty in the open,” announced their king.

“Pardon me, King Shersingh! But it is more fun emptying bowels in the open, rather than using a toilet,” said Jumbo elephant.

“We have to get over this thinking, Jumbo,” said Jumpy monkey. Defecating or doing potty in the open is not fun anymore. Our poop is the main source of water pollution. The problem becomes even more serious during monsoons, when all the poop gets washed down to the river, contaminating the water with harmful bacteria. This polluted water causes infectious diseases like cholera, diarrhoea, vomiting,” explained Jumpy.

“Jumpy is right! That’s why I want all of you to have at least one toilet in your home. We have created a fund to help you construct the toilets,” said King Shersingh. “From tomorrow, my cashier, Bandu jackal will give 25,000 each
to construct a toilet,” he added.

Bandu had been newly appointed as the cashier of Champakvan. When the king gave him the responsibility of distributing the funds for toilets, he was very pleased!

The next day, all the animals came over to collect the funds. Jumpy was first in the queue.

Bandu gave the money to Jumpy, who signed and counted the money. “Bandu, this is only 20,000 instead of 25,000 that King Shersing had announced,” said a surprised Jumpy.

“Oh yes, silly me! I forgot to tell you all that last, night King Shersingh called me and revised the toilet fund to 20,000. The remaining 5,000 will now be used to build public toilets in Champakvan, that can be used by animals and tourists. This way, our jungle will become cleaner,” said Bandu.

“This is a good thought, but we would like King Shersingh to say this to us. Please call him,” said Jumpy.

“I would have called him but he has gone to town for some urgent work. You can clarify with him once he’s back,” replied Bandu.

“No problem. Give us the money,” said everyone.

Jumpy stood quietly in one corner. He felt something was not right. At night, he went to Bandu’s house. There was a new motorbike parked at his gate. He tiptoed to the backyard and sneaked in through the window. He was taken aback at the sight. Bandu was sitting on his bed, counting money and keeping it in a bag.

“It is fun and easy to fool all the animals,” he laughed loudly and said.

Jumpy was angry and thought, “Bandu cheated us. I must inform King Shersingh about what he did. He should be back in the palace by now.”

As he passed from the backyard, he saw Bandu’s motorbike again. He thought of an idea. He pumped out all the petrol from the bike and left for the palace. He found the king’s car on his way and stopped the car and narrated everything to King Shersingh in one breath.

“I had told him to give 25,000 to everyone. How dare he to do that. Let’s go to his house,” fumed Shersingh.

When they reached Bandu’s home, it was locked from outside. “It appears that he has run away with all the money,” said King Shersingh. “He wouldn’t have reached too far as I drained all the petrol from his bike,” said Jumpy,

They went on the road to search for him, and at some distance, they found Bandu’s bike parked near the roadside, but Bandu was not there.

They knew he couldn’t have gone far. Jumpy looked behind the bushes and saw him crouching there. “I found him,” shouted Jumpy, snatching the bag of money from Bandu’s hands. King Shersingh’s bodyguards caught him.

“I trusted you and gave you this job and you cheated everyone,” King Shersingh roared walking towards Bandu.

“Please forgive me, King Shersingh,” Bandu begged.

“This is the rest of the money, sir,” Jumpy said handing over the bag of money to King Shersingh.

“Please give it to Minister Bholu and this is your reward for finding Bandu,” said King Shersingh handing over some money to Jumpy.

“No sir, I can’t take this money. We need to use this money to construct public toilets. That will be the best reward for me,” said Jumpy.

“I am very impressed, Jumpy! Champakvan needs citizens like you,” said King Shersingh and patted his back in appreciation.

Meeku’s Fridge

Long, long ago, in Champakvan, the animals were not aware of any advancements in technology. They lived simple, happy and satisfying lives in
the forest.

Meeku mouse was a resident of the forest. He had completed his education in England and recently returned to Champakvan.

He had brought back with him a box, three times larger than himself, and called it a ‘fridge’.

After he settled in, his neighbour Skippy squirrel came to visit him. “Oh! What have you brought with you? It is huge! What will you keep in it?” she asked, laughing heartily.

“This? It is called a fridge. It will cool things in no time. I can keep whatever I want to store, like vegetables and fruits. Open it and see,” Meeku replied, looking proudly at his shining new fridge.

Skippy opened the door of the fridge and was filled with joy when she got a cold blast of breeze. “Wow! This fridge is wonderful!” she exclaimed.

She was called a tale-carrier in the forest as she was good at spreading news. So the news of the new fridge spread in the forest like a wildfire.

Soon crowds started gathering outside Meeku’s house to see the fridge. After all, it was the only fridge in the forest. Everyone would enter the house one-by-one and enjoy the cold blast of air from the fridge.

Meeku was forced to demonstrate his fridge to everyone. He would say to himself, “If only I had not told Skippy about the fridge! I should have told her that it was a simple box to store things. Then the word would not have spread this fast. So many animals wouldn’t gather and I would use my fridge for storing
my food.”

Soon, as time passed the number of visitors to see the fridge declined and now he could easily use it for storing.

One day, Skippy said, “Meeku, do you know my house is under the open sky?”

Meeku nodded his head in agreement.

“The tree I stay on is placed right under the harsh sun. My house becomes an oven in the afternoon and I get baked like bread. Can I live in your fridge instead?”

“How can you live in a fridge?” Meeku was shocked at this unusual request. “That is a fridge, not a hotel. You will be frozen inside.”

“Oh! I have enough warm clothes with me,” said Skippy, waving her sweater. “I will squeeze in a small corner, please….”

How could Meeku refuse her? “Okay. Bring your luggage,” Meeku frowned.

Skippy was overjoyed. She ran and quickly gathered her belongings. She came and dumped them in the vegetable container of the fridge and closed it from inside.

The very next day, Cheeku rabbit arrived at his house. He was a farmer and Meeku bought vegetables from his farm.

“Hello, how are you? I need a little help from you,” he said and Meeku understood, looking at the juice bottles in his hand that he needed his fridge for storage.

“This is carrot juice. Will you keep these bottles in your fridge? In my home, we all are very fond of cold drinks.”

Meeku was frustrated and it was now visible on his face.

“What happened, Meeku? Any problem?” asked Cheeku.

Meeku didn’t want to refuse Cheeku’s request. What if he stopped selling him vegetables. So, he managed a weak smile and said, “Keep them inside and consider it your own fridge.”

Cheeku promptly filled the fridge with his containers and made this a daily routine.

Skippy loved her stay in the fridge. She only went out to gather food and quickly returned. All the vacant place in the fridge was taken up with Cheeku’s juice jars. Meeku was unable to completely utilise his fridge.

Frustrated with the situation, he went to Blacky bear’s ice shop.

“Oh, Meeku, why are you here? You have a fridge at home, don’t you? What do you need here?”

Meeku narrated his plight.

“You are too nice, Meeku. These people are not bad, however, they are taking advantage of your hospitality. Sometimes you have to learn to refuse,” said Blacky.

“They have been good to me. I don’t understand how I can refuse them,” Meeku said to him.

“I have a plan. Come close and I will tell you.” Meeku’s face brightened when he heard Blacky’s plan.

He quickly reached home and set the freezer at maximum. Soon Skippy came out shivering and almost frozen.

“How did this fridge suddenly become as cold as Antarctica?” she asked.

Continue reading Meeku’s Fridge

Unity Is Strength

Champakvan forest was quiet and peaceful. The animals and birds lived happily. They shared and helped each other in times of need.

A few days ago, a group of hunters came inside the forest and started hunting birds and animals, using guns. The animals were scared and cried over the loss of their friends. The fear of being hunted down troubled them the most.

They all decided to go and meet the king of the forest, Shersingh. King Shersingh heard them patiently and said, “I too am worried about your safety. But these hunters are armed with guns. Even I am afraid of guns. We will have to find a way to fight these hunters,” said Shersingh.

Honey hippo who was listening quietly said, “Your Majesty, I have a plan that can drive the hunters away from the forest.”

“What is you plan Honey?” asked Shersingh “Your Majesty, we must all stand together and fight these hunters. We must show – Unity is Strength,’’ said Honey.

“But even if we stand united, we can’t fight them. They have guns to shoot us,” said Lamboo giraffe.

“I know. We must plan cleverly before we act. My thick skin makes it difficult for the bullet difficult to pierce through it. I will go towards the hunters and distract them by walking towards them and the rest of you can attack from behind,” said Honey.

“If I get hurt, Dr Damru needs to be there to quickly remove the bullet from my body,” said Honey.

“You are putting your life at risk. Let us hope we don’t fail you,” said king Shersingh.

As planned, the next day, the crow took up the duty of a spy. He found out the camping spot of the hunters and passed the message to king Shersingh. All the animals hid in different places as planned by Honey.

Lamboo giraffe hid behind a tree, Fatty elephant hid behind a cluster of tall trees and Jumpy hid behind the bunch of bushy leaves. Cheeku rabbit took cover inside a bush. His Majesty, King Shersingh concealed himself behind a big mound.

The hunters were walking with guns in their hands. They looked alert and ready to shoot at the slightest sound.

As planned, Honey came before the hunters, then turned back and started running in the direction of his friend’s hiding places.

The hunters chased Honey, but Honey quickly gave them an escape and hid between the tall grasses.

One of the hunters reached the mound, where king Shersingh was hiding. As he climbed onto the mound to take a better look, his gaze fell on Shersingh. A chill ran down his spine. He dropped the gun and fell down rolling over the mound. The hunter managed to run away. Seeing the plight of the hunter, King Shersingh could not control his laughter.

The other hunters too were shaken when they saw their friend running. Taking charge of the situation, all the animals came out of their hiding places and attacked the hunters. In the chaos that followed, the hunters dropped their guns and ran away. The animals chased them out of the forest.

When the animals returned back to the forest, they saw the guns lying there on the ground. Jumpy collected all the guns and started imitating the hunters. He held a gun in his hands and by mistake pulled the trigger. The animals were in for a shock when they heard the sound of the gun shot. King Shersingh hid himself in a pit.

All the animals started laughing when they found out the reason behind the gun shot. Lamboo said, “We too have guns to fight now and need not be afraid of anyone.”

But Shersingh was lost in his thoughts. He thought about what could have happened if Jumpy had shot anyone.

He said, “We don’t need these guns that take the lives of others. I don’t want any of us to be killed by a gun shot. Let’s not create a situation where someone thinks they are more powerful because they have a gun. It’s better to dump them in the lake.”

Everyone agreed with Shersingh and they collected and threw the guns deep into the lake.

King Of Art!

Blacky bear loved painting. He would draw pictures during his free time. And sometimes when he drew during class, he would get a scolding from his teacher.

Blacky loved drawing sceneries like sunrises and snow-clad mountains. He drew flowers, plants and trees. He needed colours and brushes to finish these paintings.

But whenever he asked his parents for them, they would not buy them and instead tell him, he should concentrate on his studies.

At school, other children were busy with their studies that they hardly looked or paid any attention to Blacky’s drawings.

Blacky continued to draw different pictures to fulfil his hobby.

Everyone was fond of the banyan tree in the forest of Champakvan. Blacky would sit in its shadow and make drawings. Whenever Blacky felt sad, he would take his drawing book and sit in the shade of the banyan tree and draw.

The banyan tree would be pleased to see Blacky drawing.

One day, the banyan tree said to Blacky, “Blacky, you make such good drawings! I’m such a big tree! Can you draw me on that small paper?”

Blacky was happy that someone praised his drawing.

“Yes, Banyan tree! I can draw you! But I will need some time for that,” he replied.

That evening he went to draw the banyan tree.

One day, it rained heavily so Blacky could not go out.

Sitting at home, Blacky was drawing when his father came.

His father said, “What are you doing, Blacky? You keep drawing something or the other all the time. Pay attention to your studies. Only your studies will be helpful, not these drawings!”

Blacky stopped drawing and opened a book.

The banyan tree waited for Blacky to show the drawing.

But since Blacky had exams at school, he could not visit the banyan tree.

Once his exams were over, he went to the banyan tree to show him the drawing.

The banyan tree praised the drawing a lot. He said, “Blacky, why don’t you send your drawings to Champak magazine? They often have drawing competitions and you should participate.”

Blacky had no idea about it. The banyan tree would often read stories in Champak, so he was aware of it.

The banyan tree gave Blacky the address of Champak magazine and asked him to send his drawing there.

Blacky sent his drawing to Champak and won the first prize. Everyone in Champakvan loved his artwork!

As a prize, he received the same colours and brushes, which he often asked his parents to buy for him.

The news that Blacky was a great artist spread through the forest like wildfire.

At the assembly hall in school, the headmistress honoured Blacky by calling him on stage, giving him a prize and the title of ‘The King of Art’.

Blacky’s parents realised their son’s talent and promised to support him along with his studies.

United We Stand

Putru owl lived in Champakvan forest. One night, he set out to look for food and saw a tent on the outskirts of the forest. A jeep was parked beside it.

“These weren’t here before!” muttered Putru. Before sunrise, he woke everyone and told them about the jeep and the tent.

Blacky bear had interacted with humans before when he was in a circus and had then escaped to the forest. He quietly went to the tent and peeked inside to see guns, axes and a few men sleeping inside. He immediately understood why they had come.

“They are here to cut down trees of the forest,” said Blacky.

Everyone was shocked. If the trees were cut down, there would be no forest for them to live in.

“You used to say that humans are clever creatures. Do they not know that cutting down trees will bring harm to them as well? Trees make up the forests, give us our homes, and bring rainfall. Trees hold the soil together and also clean the air,” said Cheeku rabbit.

“That’s not all. Trees provide food, medicines and many other things,” said Jumpy monkey.

“But today, humans are being short-sighted. They want to cut down the trees for wood to make homes, furniture and paper,” said Blacky.

“We won’t let them cut the trees!” said Jumbo elephant, angrily. “But they have guns. They can kill us!” said Blacky.

“We must be brave but careful. Let us make a plan to save our forest,” said Jumpy.

“Yes, we must do something quickly! Once they wake up, they may start cutting the trees!” said Jumbo.

Meanwhile, Cheeku had come up with a plan. “If we take those guns and axes, the humans will not be able to bring any harm to us or to the trees,” voiced Cheeku.

They all agreed with his plan and started acting accordingly. Meeku called the mice family to use their razor-sharp teeth to make holes in the tent. Jumpy and Monty entered the tent through the holes and took the guns and the axes, and gave them to Blacky who was standing outside.

Jumbo picked the axes and guns with his trunk and dropped them into the river. “Our trees are safe now. We must scare the humans so that they don’t come here again,” said Cheeku.

All the animals surrounded the tent and started making scary noises. The men sleeping inside woke up with a start.

“Animals have surrounded us. Quick, get the guns!” shouted their chief.

“But there are no guns here! Did we leave them in the jeep?” asked another. “I brought them inside the tent myself!” said the third.

“The axes are gone too! What’s going on?” said their chief.

Jumbo pulled the tent from the ground and now the frightened men were surrounded by animals.

Upon receiving a signal from Jumpy, all the animals started moving towards them.

The men didn’t wait anymore. They ran into their jeep and drove away, promising never to return to the forest.

Blacky said, “We stood with each other bravely and defeated those who were stronger than us. We prevented our forest from getting destroyed. I am proud of us all.”

“If anyone ever comes back here with bad intentions, we will drive them away again, together,” said Jumpy.

All the animals then celebrated their victory that day.

Fear Of Coronavirus!

All the animals of Champakvan were scared of at the speed with which the corona pandemic was spreading.

One morning, when Meeku mouse went to the market to buy some vegetables, he saw that everyone in the market was following social distancing while shopping and that they all wore masks.

Meeku always bought his vegetables from Blacky bear’s shop. He stood in the queue like everybody else. When it was his turn he handed over the list and his bag to Blacky and said, “Blacky, here is my list, please weigh the vegetables for me.”

“Right away,” said Blacky.

Blacky was weighing the vegetables when suddenly Meeku coughed.

Blacky stopped immediately and asked, “Meeku, you are coughing! Are you sure you’re not infected by coronavirus?”

“No, I am absolutely fine. Something just irritated my throat and so I coughed,” said Meeku, embarrassed as everyone was looking at him accusingly.

“How is that possible? I am sure it is coronavirus and you are hiding it. I cannot give you vegetables. You go to the hospital immediately and get yourself checked,” said Blacky, rudely.

Jumpy monkey and Damru donkey who were buying vegetables from the next shop moved away quickly. “Run, Meeku is infected by coronavirus. We will get infected too if we stay here,” Jumpy screamed.

“Yes, you are right. It is not safe to stay here,” shouted Damru, trotting away.

Soon, the entire market knew about Meeku coughing and all the shopkeepers started shutting their shops and ran.

Meeku was not able to understand what was happening around him. He tried to stop everybody. “Don’t run away from me, please stay,” he pleaded. “Could they be right, am I really infected?” he thought to himself. He became very upset and sat there and started to cry.

Dola deer was also visiting the market at the same time to buy vegetables. When she heard the noise and saw Jumpy, Damru and Blacky running away, she stopped them and asked, “Why are you all running? What is the problem?”

“Dola, Meeku is infected with coronavirus and if we stay here we will get infected too,” said Jumpy, out of breath.

“If you want to save yourselves you better run too,” Damru added.

Dola tried to calm them and asked, “First you all stop running and tell me who told you that Meeku has coronavirus?”

“I saw Meeku coughing,” said Blacky.
“Yes, we also saw him coughing,” Jumpy and Damru said in a chorus.

“Coughing does not necessarily mean that one is infected by coronavirus and treating Meeku like this based on your suspicion is not right after all he is also a member of our family,” Dola explained.

“Dola, we don’t know all that but we are very scared that we may get infected too,” said Jumpy fearfully.

Dola consoled him and said, “Don’t be scared, Jumpy. Only a doctor can say if Meeku is infected or not. Let us take him to the hospital.”

They all agreed with Dola and took Meeku to the hospital.

Doctor Jumbo elephant screened them all as they reached the hospital. He asked them to sit on the chairs placed at a distance and asked them, “What is it? Why do you all look so scared?”

“Doctor, Meeku has been infected with coronavirus. Please admit him in your hospital,” said Jumpy.

“But how do you know that he has been infected?” asked Doctor Jumbo.

“Meeku was coughing that’s how we know,” Jumpy replied.

Dola then explained the situation to Doctor Jumbo, “Actually Doctor, everybody doubts that Meeku was coughing because he is infected and that is why we have brought him here to know for sure.”

“You did the right thing by bringing him here. Let me check for his symptoms,” and Doctor Jumbo took Meeku inside for a check-up.

After taking a swab test and a full examination Doctor Jumbo came out and said, “The swab test report will take a few days to come. But I have physically examined Meeku and he is not infected by coronavirus. There is no need to hospitalise him.”

“Then why was he coughing? I have heard that Corona patients cough,” asked Blacky.

“Coughing alone does not mean that one is infected. High fever, breathlessness, headaches, diarrhoea, loss of taste and smell are some of the other symptoms of this disease. Meeku always uses a mask and he regularly sanitizes his hands. Also, he has not been in contact with any corona patients in the last few days. He does not have any symptoms,” said the doctor.

“Why was Meeku coughing then?” Damru wanted to know.

“Meeku drank cold water before leaving for the market as it was really hot and he had ice cream last night and that’s why he was coughing. I have given him medicines for his sore throat,” he explained.

Jumpy, Blacky and Damru were all embarrassed after finding out the truth from the doctor.

They all apologised to Meeku, “We accused you without any reason and took you to be a coronavirus patient. We ran away from you and treated you badly, please forgive us.”

Jumpy turned to Dola and said, “Had it not been for you we would have never got him to the hospital and known the truth.”

“Don’t be scared of coronavirus, just be alert. It can happen to anybody but a little precaution can prevent us from this disease. Wearing a mask while going out, washing our hands regularly, maintaining social distancing, covering our nose and mouth while coughing or sneezing are some of the things that can prevent us from this disease. Also, contact a doctor in a nearby hospital if you notice any symptoms. Most importantly, do not treat a coronavirus patient badly, try to help them instead,” advised Doctor Jumbo.

Meeku thanked doctor Jumbo and said, “I am thankful to you for giving us so much information about coronavirus. For a moment even I was scared but now I am no longer scared.” He also thanked Dola for her help.

Why is the Lion here?

Meeku mouse was playing hide and seek with his friends.

He counted,”.1, 2, 3, 4, 5……10’’ and asked aloud, “I hope all of you have hidden? I am coming out to catch you.’’ said Meeku as he came out from behind the tree.

There were a lot of bushes near the trees but Meeku could not see anyone behind them.

“I am sure that Baddy must be hiding inside the bushes. I know him very well. He is very lazy and won’t go too far to hide,” thought Meeku as he entered the bushes. 

It was Laptu jackal and not Baddy who was actually resting there. Seeing Meeku, he got annoyed. 

“Sorry Laptu, I didn’t mean to disturb you. I was searching for my friends.” apologised Meeku, ready to run. 

“You’ve disturbed me and you will have to pay for this,” said Laptu as he leapt towards Meeku. Hearing him say this, Meeku started to run. 

“Ha…ha …. ha…’’ laughed Meeku as he left Laptu behind. Just as he was catching his breath, he thought he saw something that looked like a pair of ears behind the bushes. 

“These look like Baddy’s ears”, Meeku said to himself and then watched closely. He noticed a tail outside the bushes.

“Caught you! I have seen your tail outside the bushes, Baddy. Come out of your hiding.” said Meeku. 

Baddy came out of his hiding, looking like a thief caught in the act.

“I thought Laptu wouldn’t let you go off easily,” said Baddy laughing.

“Stop laughing Baddy … I have to catch Cheeku rabbit. Let’s see where he is hiding,’’ said Meeku and set out again.

Suddenly, Meeku heard a voice from behind the rocks.

“I caught you Cheeku!” he shouted putting his hand behind the rocks to pull Cheeku out.

“But …this is Blacky bear.” he realised when he put his hand.

“Sorry uncle. We were playing hide and seek and when I saw a figure behind the rocks, I thought it was Cheeku hiding there,” said Meeku and ran off, barely giving any chance to Blacky to speak.

 “Oh! What an escape!” said Meeku to himself panting. “I should be a bit more careful. I may land in trouble, searching for Cheeku.”

Just then, Meeku noticed a white-coloured ear behind the tree.

“Now, you have been caught, Cheeku! I have seen your long white ears behind the tree. Come out.” said Meeku. Cheeku came out of his hiding on hearing Meeku.

“Too bad! I have been caught because of my long ears.’’ said Cheeku angrily.

“Come on. Both of you go and hide now. I will count till 10.” said Baddy and went behind the tree to close his eyes.

Meeku and Cheeku went into hiding.

“I am coming for you.” said Baddy and set out to look for them.

Suddenly Baddy heard a lion roar at a distance, and he started to sweat.

But he had a feeling that his friends were playing a prank on him. So, he shouted loudly, “Look, don’t you dare try to scare me.”

Baddy felt really scared when he heard the roar the second time.

“Cheeku and Meeku, you had better stop scaring me.” warned Baddy.

“I am not making these sounds.” said Cheeku coming out from behind the bushes. “I am also wondering where the sound is coming from.’’

“That means this is Meeku’s prank.’’ said Baddy and set out to look for him.

He could hear the roar over and over again. Both Baddy and Cheeku stopped on their tracks, as they turned pale with fright.

“Believe me, it’s not me whose letting out these roars.” said Meeku as he came out of his hiding. “This sure is the roar of a lion, which is coming here.” said Meeku filled with fear.

Hurry! Let’s go and hide somewhere.” said a worried Baddy.

“Yes.” shouted Cheeku and Meeku. They leaped into the bushes without wasting any time. 

All three of them hid in the bushes for quite a long time, waiting for the lion to come.

“Hey? Where is the lion?” The three friends spoke among themselves.

“Haa … Haa …….’’ Just then they heard Damru donkey laugh.

“Damru, go and hide in some place safe. A lion is coming here.” said Cheeku on seeing Damru.

 But Damru continued laughing.

“Stop laughing …We will all get killed because of you.” shouted an angry and irritated Meeku.

“Stop Damru’’ warned Baddy.

“Oh, please stop panicking.” said Damru trying to control his laughter. “I am that lion who was trying to scare you! Let me also play with you or I will keep making these sounds to frighten you.”

Saying so, Damru let out a loud roar again.

“Okay, join in for a game. But stop roaring. Else, a real lion will surely pop up from somewhere.” said Baddy. Everyone burst into laughter.

Will guessing work?

Champakvan Public School was one of the prestigious schools of Champakvan. All the parents wanted their children to study there as it had many good teachers and facilities. Toto turtle too was a student of the school. Though he moved slowly, his brain was fast and he was a sharp and bright student. He usually stood first in his class.

Baddy fox studied in the same class as Toto. Baddy never paid attention to his studies. He would ask others for answers during exams. He spent a lot of his time and energy learning new ways to cheat. He had been punished a number of times for cheating in his exams but he did not mend his ways.

A few days before their half-yearly exams, their teacher Jumbo elephant explained, “The question paper in your half-yearly exams shall carry all objective type questions so you must all prepare accordingly. Each question shall have four answers and you have to choose the correct answer. And remember do not even think about cheating. If anyone is caught cheating he or she will be thrown out of the school,” warned Jumbo.

The children were happy with the multiple-choice paper, as then they wouldn’t have to write long answers. 

All were well prepared for their exams except for Baddy fox. He was nervous as he had not studied for the exams and became worried as the days passed.

Soon, it was the day of the first exam. 

Baddy started sweating as soon as he saw the question paper. He did not know what to do. The question paper had four answers to each question and the students were supposed to write the correct answer in their answer sheet. 

Baddy didn’t know the answers to any of the questions. He started guessing the answers and writing them in his answer sheets. He did the same for each question.

While the other students were writing their answers after carefully thinking about each question, Baddy chose the only way he knew and guessed all the answers.

Some of the students skipped the questions they found difficult and went back to solving them after writing the answers they knew.

After the exams, all the students were excited to know their marks. 

On the day of the result, the students started guessing who would score how much, all in fun.

The results were announced and Toto stood first in his class. All the children clapped and congratulated him.

Baddy’s result surprised everyone including Jumbo Sir. 

Baddy had cleared the exams with good marks. Guessing worked for him. Baddy jumped as he soon as heard he had score 75%. He had scored good marks for the first time and felt very proud of himself.

After school, Baddy teased his friends and said, “You all worked so hard and I cleared the exam without studying. You all should learn something from me.”

His constant boasting annoyed others but they kept quiet. Baddy now stopped studying completely. He started wasting his time even more. The half-yearly results had made him arrogant.

Time slipped and soon it was time for the yearly exams. Baddy had wasted all his time in teasing the others and was now stressed as he had not studied at all.

This paper was very different than the multiple-choice paper. It had questions in which one had to write short and long answers. As soon as Baddy saw the question paper, his mouth dried. He could guess no more. He sat through his exams without writing anything as guessing was of no use this time.

A few days later, the results were announced and the students saw their marks on the notice board. Baddy had failed in his exams. Now, the others made fun of him.

But when Toto saw him crying, he went up to Baddy and soothed him. “Baddy, guessing does not work all the time. There are no shortcuts to success. We can achieve success only if we work hard. Guessing helped you once but it does not work every time. If you study every day, you won’t have to depend on guessing and you will not fail.”

Baddy understood what Toto was saying. “You are right, Toto. From today, I will also work hard and pay attention to my studies. I promise not to take the shortcut.”

Baddy and Toto became friends and Toto started helping Baddy every day with his studies. Baddy was no longer nervous about exams.

Greeting Card

Champakvan had an orphanage devoted to the care of orphans. It was home to a lot of children. The boarding, lodging and studies of these children was completely undertaken by King Shersingh.

Shanno cat was employed as the caretaker of the orphanage.

King Shersingh visited the orphanage once a month.

One Sunday, when Shersingh reached the orphanage, Shanno was waiting for him at the gates to welcome him.

“Shanno, I hope the kids are well taken care of?” asked Shersingh.

“Yes, my King! I take care of them like my own kids. I am at their service throughout the day. I am always concerned about them,” replied Shanno.

“My King, I request you to come and see for yourself how well these kids are taken care of,” she continued taking Shersingh to the kitchen.

Lunch was being prepared in the kitchen. There was chapati, rice, dal, vegetables and rice pudding on the menu.

“This food smells good here!’ said Shersingh, taking in the aromas of the food.

“Yes, my king! We serve tasty and nutritious food to the kids every day. They are also served milk, nuts and fruits in the morning,” Shanno added.

“That is excellent! I wish that these kids never face any inconvenience while they are here. Let me know if you need any help,” offered Shersingh.

Then, Shersingh visited the kids in their rooms. Cheeku rabbit, Meeku mouse, Jumpy monkey and the other kids greeted the King.

“Children, are you all comfortable here?” asked Shersingh.

“Yes!” said the kids and nodded.

“My King, like I said, the kids here do not have any problems. We care for them like our own kids. Each and every need of theirs is taken care of,” Shanno added quickly.

As soon as Shersingh got up to leave, Cheeku interrupted and said, “My king, we have made a greeting card for you and we would like to present it to you.”

Shersingh happily accepted their request and said, “Yes, of course! Bring it quickly. I want to see what my lovely children have made for me.”

Meeku brought the card and presented it to Shersingh.

Shersingh opened the greeting card and smiled and said, “It is a very beautiful card. I have never been presented with anything like this before. I will always treasure it.”

“Shanno, you are working really hard to help these kids. You deserve a reward for your efforts. I will return soon,” said Shersingh as he left.

That night Shersingh visited the orphanage with Inspector Tommy Dog and his team.

Shanno was surprised to see Shersingh with the police. She came out quickly and asked, “What is it Inspector? Is there a thief here?” 

“Yes, we are here to catch a criminal. A crime has been happening for many days and now we have the proof for it,” said Inspector Tommy and hand-cuffed Shanno.

“Why are you taking me in, Inspector? What crime have I committed? I look after the kids in the orphanage. I am not a thief,” cried Shanno.

“You should be ashamed of yourself! I trusted you and you took advantage of my trust. Now you will spend the rest of your life in prison,” roared Shersingh, his eyes red with anger.

“My King, there is some misunderstanding. I have not done anything. Please leave me!” pleaded Shanno.

“There is no misunderstanding. The children of the orphanage gifted me the card and it mentioned all the details of your wrong doings. You have been torturing these little children by hitting them and threatening them. How you fed them stale food that too, just once a day. 

All the food that was being prepared was just to fool me. You have been keeping all the money that was sent for the welfare of the kids, for yourself. Your misdeeds have finally come to light now,” Shersingh growled.

Seeing his rage, Shanno admitted to her crimes. Shersingh demanded a tough punishment for Shanno.

Then Shersingh praised Cheeku, Meeku and Jumpy for their presence of mind and said, “We were able to uncover Shanno’s wrongdoings due to your intelligent thinking. I assure you, that you will never face such a problem again. You will all be looked after well!”

Shanno was sent to prison and the children lived happily with another caretaker.

Environment Day

Baddy fox wanted to cut the trees of Champakvan. He did not know why, but he disliked the animals of Champakvan and was always thinking of new ways to harm them.

“If there are no trees, then the forest will be destroyed by itself. The animals will suffer from hunger, heat and shelter. And that’s what I want,” Baddy told this to the woodcutter with a cunning smile.

“Yes, and I will get to sell the tree in the city for a profit,” said the woodcutter picking up his axe.

“We must work cleverly and no one should know our plan,” said Baddy.

“No one will know. Otherwise, it will be tough to cut the trees,” the woodcutter agreed.

“Tomorrow, I shall go to Champakvan and figure out which day you can begin cutting the trees,” said Baddy.

“Let me know when you think the time’s right and I will come with my companions and axes and saws,” replied the woodcutter and bid goodbye to Baddy.

Next day, Baddy went to Champakvan. The forest was beautifully decorated. Colourful ribbons were tied to the trees. Fairly lights hung from every branch. The animals had decorated their homes. Baddy was curious and wanted to know why the forest had been decorated.

Just then he saw Blacky bear handing balloons to Jumpy monkey on the tree.

“Blacky, what is happening in the forest? Why is it decorated so beautifully? Is there a wedding happening?”

“Don’t you know?” asked Blacky looking at Baddy in surprise.

“No. That is why I am asking you,” said Baddy, rolling his eyes.

“June 5 is Environment Day. We are making these preparations to celebrate that great festival in Champakvan,” replied Blacky.

“Oh! So these decorations are for Environment Day,” whispered Baddy to himself.

“Did you say something?” asked Blacky.

“No, no! I didn’t,” muttered Baddy and walked away.

At the Brave Hardy Crossing, the main crossing of Champakvan, named after one of its scientists, many animals had gathered. They were discussing something important amongst themselves. Baddy wanted to know what they were talking about, so he sat down quietly at one side to listen to them.

“We should ask King Shersingh to be our chief guest,” said Dola deer.

“But he is from our forest. How can someone from our forest be the chief guest? We should look for someone else,” said Cheeku rabbit.

“You are right, Cheeku. If we get someone from Sundarvan, it will be better. When they see the environment celebrations, they will go back and praise our forest in their forest,” said Greta giraffe.

“Whom can we invite?” asked Cheeku and scratched his head.

“How about Baddy fox?” suggested Dola.

“No! No! Baddy always wants to harm Champakvan. How can we make him our chief guest?” Cheeku objected.

“Maybe Dola is right. Baddy may be planning against Champakvan, but we never think of harming him. Perhaps, when he is invited as our chief guest, he may improve and become a good person,” said Greta.

All agreed with Greta’s suggestion. Suddenly, Cheeku caught sight of Baddy, sitting behind a bush, quietly.

“Look! Baddy is here. Let us go and invite him for the function,” he said excitedly.

All animals went to Baddy and invited him to be their chief guest.

Baddy had been feeling uneasy listening to the conversation, and now he was more troubled. He could not even think how of a fitting reply.

“I…I…,” he stammered and then said, ‘’I will surely come.”

On his way back, Baddy started wondering about what had happened. “Here, I was thinking of harming Champakvan and these animals are inviting me to be their chief guest.”

On the day of the function, Baddy came to Champakvan forest. He was given a very warm welcome and presented a garland of fresh flowers and made to sit on the sofa comfortably.

The animals of the forest put up skits telling everyone the importance of trees and why more trees should be planted. They said in chorus, “Fewer trees means heating of the atmosphere, less rain and homes will disappear.”

Baddy became thoughtful and realised he would have done something horrible if he had cut the trees. He decided that he would never again harm the trees of any forest.

He would also stop the woodcutters from cutting trees.

The function came to an end and the animals requested Chief Guest Baddy to address the gathering with a few words.

“I am very happy to be here and I promise that from today, I will not harm the trees in any way. I promise to plant 100 trees in Champakvan and look after them.”

Hearing him, all the animals were very happy. Baddy had truly been transformed.

Clever Cheeku

Champakvan was going through a massive heatwave. The sun beat down upon the earth, making it terribly hot. It felt as if the animals were living in a furnace. As a result, all the animals spent most of the day indoors and only ventured out in the evenings. The evenings were no cool dip in the pond either. The ground was still as hot as before, but the shade under the trees made life a little better.

Over the years, the summers were getting worse. This year was the hottest, and every evening, all the animals would plan for the next day.

Meeku, the mouse stepped out to stock up supplies for the next day. As he was walking around, looking for some food, he saw that his friend Cheeku, the rabbit was digging a hole.

Meeku found this to be very strange. While the rest of the forest was looking for supplies to last them the next day, Cheeku seemed to be wasting his time digging. After some debate, Meeku decided to go over to Cheeku and find out what he was doing.

Saving Rainwater

“What are you doing, Cheeku?” asked Meeku.

“Digging a hole of course,” said Cheeku.

“I can see that, but what are you digging?”

“A lake,” said Cheeku, continuing to dig.

“You’re joking right?” asked Meeku. “The entire forest is reeling under the heat of the summer and instead of gathering supplies for tomorrow, you’re digging a hole? Why are you doing such a silly thing?” Meeku burst into laughter.

“It is not silly. I’m very serious about digging a lake,” said Cheeku. Meeku stopped laughing

“What’s the matter, Cheeku? What’s wrong with our lake?” asked Meeku.

“Our lake is fine for now, but do you realise that every year, just after the summer, we face a severe water shortage? I’m digging this lake so that there will be enough water for all of us,” said Cheeku.

“I don’t understand one thing though,” said Meeku. “How do you intend to fill this lake up?” “With rainwater of course. Every year when it rains, we let so much water go to waste. In fact, my plan is to dig a pit near my house and send all the water from the drains of my terrace to this pit,” said Cheeku.

“What for?” asked Meeku.

“This will raise the water table and recharge the groundwater instead of letting all the rainwater flow away back to the ocean. Imagine if we saved all that water, we’d never have to worry about going thirsty ever again,” said Cheeku.

“Hmm, you make a good point. But do you really think you’ll be able to finish digging before the rains start?” asked Meeku.

More from Champak: Where Are The Rains?

“No, I don’t think so, but if you work hard now, you can reap the rewards later,” said Cheeku.

Meeku was deeply moved by Cheeku’s actions. After gathering all his supplies for the next day, Meeku came to Cheeku and said, “I would like to help you with your cause. You seem to be doing something great and I want to be a part of it.”

Cheeku was very happy to see that Meeku was also interested and together they began to dig.

Blacky, the bear and Jumpy, the monkey, who were passing by, stopped when they saw Cheeku and Meeku hard at work. “What are you guys doing?” they asked.

When Meeku and Cheeku explained, Blacky and Jumpy wanted to help too. Each grabbed a pickaxe and helped loosen the soil for Meeku and Cheeku to dig. Jumbo, the elephant joined in as well and started digging. Soon, the word spread across the forest and animals joined in from far and wide. Even the King of the jungle, Shersingh, the lion was there.

Seeing all the animals working together, Shersingh said, “Looks like next year we’ll have enough water to last us more than a year. All the rainwater will no longer go to waste.”

However, Jumpy had something to say, “Cheeku has started a good thing, but this is only to save water. What will we do about the heat that rises every day? We won’t be able to escape this heat just by digging.” All animals started thinking the same.

Teetu, the butterfly chimed in, “We can plant more and more trees, and this will bring down the heat. We should get started now.”

Cheeku then said excitedly, “Yes! This is a good idea. Before today, all we did was talk about bringing change, but from now on we will dig for water and also plant trees sincerely. This will help reduce the heat.”

After listening to him, all the animals became excited as they had got the solutions to all their problems. All of them started working enthusiastically towards these solutions.


Blacky, the bear, loved weekends. Weekends meant a trip to his grandma’s house. He liked to walk through the woods to reach his grandma’s house. Little birds and honey bees used to greet him on the way. He always carried some homemade goodies for his grandma. Blacky’s mother used to bake some cakes or cookies and give them to Blacky to take to Grandma. He used to spend the night at his grandma’s house and then come home the next morning. He liked to listen to grandma’s funny stories and play with the rabbits who lived near her house.

The much-awaited weekend came, and Blacky finished his homework as soon as he got home from school so that he could be completely free for two days.

Baddy Steals The Show

Blacky’s mom called out, “Blacky, I have kept some honey buns for grandma. Take them with you when you go, and give my love to grandma. Come soon tomorrow. We are going out for a birthday party.”

Blacky said, “Ok, mom. I will come soon. Don’t worry.” He took the basket of honeybuns and filled his water bottle, and started to walk towards the woods. It was quite a distance but Blacky loved to walk instead of going by cycle. It was a sunny morning and he stopped to watch the tailor bird weaving its nest. Then, he came across two deer playing hide and seek. The elephants were bathing in the river and Blacky waved to them. They too waved back.

After walking for half-an-hour, he felt tired and sat under a tree to rest. The cuckoo bird who lived in that tree was singing a melodious tune. Blacky drank some water from his bottle and settled for a small nap. Soon, he was asleep.

Baddy, the fox, was watching Blacky from behind a tree. Seeing him asleep, he came near him. Baddy’s mouth watered as he could sniff the sweet smell of honeybuns coming from Blacky. He crept up to Blacky and took the basket of honeybuns. He went behind a bush and opened the basket. The honeybuns were very delicious and he ate them all. Then, he took some grass and hay and filled the basket. He kept it near Blacky and left the place.

After some time, Blacky woke up and rushed to reach his grandma’s house in time. His grandma greeted him with a warm smile and gave him strawberry milkshake. Blacky said to his grandma, “Grandma, open the basket and see what I have brought for you.”

Grandma opened to find only grass and hay. She was disappointed. So was Blacky. He said, “Oh, my! I had brought honeybuns for you, Grandma. I do not know what happened. I am very sorry.”

His grandma said, “Don’t worry my child. Come and play with your friends. They are waiting for you.” Blacky went to play with Cheeku, Meeku, and all his other friends and had a good time at his grandma’s house, but at the back of his mind, he was always worried about what had happened to the honeybuns. Blacky left for his home the next day.

More from Champak: The Night Ghost

Next week, Blacky carried some grapes in a tiffin box but the grapes were replaced by pebbles by the time he reached his grandma’s house. Another time, Blacky took some cookies but found only rotten eggs on reaching grandma’s place. Blacky realized then that someone must be replacing his basket of goodies when he takes his nap on the way to his grandma’s house. So, Blacky decided that he would plan a trick to catch the thief in action.

The next time he was going to his grandma’s house, he took some mango juice in a bottle and added a lot of chilly powder to it. Before his usual nap, he said loudly, “I hope grandma likes the delicious mango juice that I have gotten for her this time.” Then, he fell asleep.

Baddy, who was waiting for Blacky to come and fall asleep so he could steal his goodies, heard this. He hurriedly stole the basket and drank the juice inside in one gulp but soon his mouth and throat started burning. He started howling badly. Hearing the noise, Blacky opened his eyes and caught hold of the fox. He dragged Baddy all the way to his grandma’s house, and told her, “See, grandma, this is the thief who has been stealing all the goodies meant for you!”

Blacky’s grandma congratulated Blacky on figuring out a smart way to catch the thief, and called the Police to come and take Baddy to his parent’s house so that he could get a scolding. Blacky never had any problems bringing goodies to his grandma ever again.

Baddy Steals The Show!

Hurray! Our experiment is successful!” cheered Blacky, the bear and Jumbo, the elephant as they saw their car floating mid-air.

On hearing their excited shouts, Baddy, the fox came into the garage where the two were working to see what was happening.

“Blacky and Jumbo, is your experiment over? Why do you both look so happy?” asked Baddy.

“Yes! We have successfully built a solar hover car,” said Jumbo excitedly. He then pressed a button on the remote and the car started to rise from the ground.

“Wow! This is incredible!” exclaimed Baddy.

“Day after tomorrow, we shall exhibit it before the entire jungle,” said Jumbo.

“We will become famous and everyone will refer to us as the inventors of this impressive solar hover car,” said Blacky happily.

The Night Ghost

“But we must thank you, Baddy, for letting us work in your garage. Thank you so much!” said Jumbo.

“Yes, Baddy too is responsible for the invention of this solar hover car,” pitched in Blacky.

“I am more than happy to have helped you both. I am happy for your success,” said Baddy.

The three then locked the garage and went home.

The next morning, NEWS when Blacky and Jumbo switched on the television, they saw Baddy all over the news and that everybody was praising him for his new creation—the solar hover car!

“What’s this, Jumbo?” asked Blacky shocked.

“I have no idea. I am quite surprised myself,” replied Jumbo.

Both of them hurried to Baddy’s house where a lot of reporters had already gathered and were waiting to interview Baddy.

“How does your invention work, Baddy?” asked one reporter.

“My latest invention is a car that can be driven with the help of sunlight. But the best part is that it is not to be driven on the road like other ordinary cars; it actually flies! It is a solar hover car,” said a boastful Baddy.

“Fly? Could you demonstrate?” asked the reporter.

“I would have given you a demo but it is very cloudy right now, so it will not work,” said Baddy.

“Does that mean we will not be able to use this car at night?” asked the reporter. “You will be able to operate it in the night but it needs to be charged for which you will need sunlight. Right now, it is not fully charged and so I cannot demonstrate how to use it,” answered Baddy.

“Did anybody else help you build it?” asked another reporter.

“Yes, Blacky and Jumbo helped me. One of them got me tea and the other got me snacks while I was working on the car,” said Baddy with a laugh.

More from Champak: The Case Of The Missing Lotuses

All the reporters started laughing too.

“Liar! We built this solar car!” interrupted Blacky and Jumbo angrily.

“What? Why are you both lying? Now that my experiment is successful, you want credit for it?” asked Baddy.

“No, we are telling the truth. This is our invention and we worked very hard on it,” said Blacky angrily.

“If both of you built this car, why didn’t you inform us earlier and how come Baddy knows all about it?” questioned one of the reporters.

Blacky and Jumbo tried their best to convince the reporters but nobody was ready to believe them. Baddy then announced that he would demonstrate the car’s flying capabilities the next day at 11 a.m., following which everyone dispersed. Blacky and Jumbo went home disappointed.

The following morning, Baddy had parked the car in the garden so that it would be charged by the time everyone arrived. When it was 11, he stepped outside to see people already waiting for him.

“I know that all of you have been eagerly waiting to see this car hover in the air. You shall witness it now,” announced Baddy as he sat in the car.

He switched it on but it didn’t start. Baddy tried again and this time, the car slowly started floating in the air. There were loud gasps of surprise from the crowd. And then some started to clap.

Carried away by the applause, Baddy failed to notice that the car was rising fast. Suddenly, he realised what was happening and tried to slow it down but he couldn’t do it. He tried everything but the car just kept rising and rising.

Baddy panicked and started yelling for help. By then, the car had already risen so high that nobody could hear his cry for help. Everyone assumed he was waving his hands because he was excited. As the car flew higher, it became difficult for Baddy to breathe and he eventually fainted.

When Baddy finally woke up, he realised he was lying on his bed at home and noticed the reporters gathered around him.

“How did I get here?” asked Baddy.

“Your car was out of control. We didn’t know what to do when we didn’t see you for a long time. Your car had risen so high that we couldn’t even see you. That’s when Blacky and Jumbo arrived and they brought the car down with the help of a remote,” explained a reporter.

“Yes, and they brought you down in time, otherwise it would have been fatal for you,” said Dr Drake, the deer who was called in to check on Baddy.

“They’re waiting for you outside now,” he informed.

Baddy immediately rushed outside to apologise to Blacky and Jumbo.

“I am sorry. I lied about the invention. It was yours and I wanted to take all the credit for it,” said Baddy regretting his behaviour.

On hearing his confession, everyone who was gathered there became angry with Baddy and started yelling at him.

“Please, stop! We have forgiven Baddy. We request you to forgive him too,” said Jumbo to all the reporters present there.

Baddy apologised to everybody and assured them that he will never try to steal the credit for someone else’s hard work.

The Poem Feat

Sundarvan’s King Shaatir Lion was very fond of poems. He would reward anyone who recited even average poems.

When Bunky Monkey came to know this, she said to her husband, Beeru Monkey, “You should go and narrate a poem to get the reward from the king.”

Beeru said, “That’s fine, but the problem is I don’t know any poem.  What will I say in front of the king?”

Bunky was clever. She suggested, “While going there, just narrate whatever you see on the way, in the form of a poem. Be confident. You will definitely be rewarded.”

Beeru liked her suggestion. He immediately set out for the king’s palace.

On the way, he saw a crow sitting on a rock, near the pond. He was repeatedly filling water in his beak, pouring it on the rock and rubbing it with his beak.  Beeru instantly made up a poem.

“Rub, rub and rub, While pouring water, I know, O Blacky, What is there in your heart?”

After creating the poem, Beeru felt good. He went to the palace. He narrated his poem in front of the king. The king appreciated his effort. He rewarded him suitably.

The king’s minister, Lukkhu Hyena, wanted to kill the king. He wished to become king himself.

The king’s barber, Blacky Bear, was also involved in this conspiracy. Lukkhu had made a plan.

When Blacky would go to the palace to shave the king’s beard the next day, he would slit his throat with the razor.

Blacky, as per the plan, did reach the palace. However, he couldn’t muster the courage to kill King Shaatir. He kept pouring water on the slab and rubbing the razor against it.

Seeing him do so, again and again, King Shaatir remembered the poem that he had heard from Beeru the day before. He repeated that poem

“Rub, rub and rub, While pouring water, I know, O Blacky, What is there in your heart?”


Blacky was stunned when he heard these words from King Shaatir. He fell at the king’s feet. He pleaded, “Maharaj, I am innocent. Minister Lukkhu Hyena asked me to do this. Please forgive me. I am not at fault.”

The king was taken aback by Blacky’s words. Blacky revealed the entire plan. The king set him free. He ordered that Lukkhu should be arrested. He punished him for his deeds.


The king received Beeru in his palace with great respect. He told him how his poem had saved his life. The king applauded Beeru. He gave him credit for saving his life through his poem. He gave Beeru very high remuneration. This ended all of Beeru’s problems.

Blood Donation Camp

Jumbo, the elephant walked out merrily one morning. While on his way, Leelu, the kangaroo met him and asked, “What is the matter Dadu? You seem very happy. Where are you going?”

“I am going to the grounds for the camp,” told Jumbo.

“Which camp?”

“Blood donation camp,” said Jumbo, as he walked away.

“Blood donation camp!” Leelu was excited. “I will go and see for myself whether Jumbo Dadu is really donating blood or not?” Leelu skipped and hopped towards the grounds. Damru, the donkey saw her on the way and asked, “Leelu, where are you going early in the morning?”

“I am going to the blood donation camp. You can come along if you want.” As soon as he heard this, Damru joined Leelu.

When Jumpy, the monkey saw them, he inquired, “Where are both of you going this morning?”

“We are going to the blood donation camp.” Damru shared. Jumpy laughed and asked, “Are you going to take blood or give it?” Damru’s face fell.

Jumpy spread the news to his friends. Some laughed, while others made fun. When Blacky, the bear heard it, he became serious and said in anger, “When this small lanky Damru can donate blood, why can’t we?”

“Blacky is right.” Geetu, the rhinoceros said. “We should go there too,” said Geetu and both of them walked to the camp. There was a big crowd outside. All the animals, whether small, fat, thin or lean were standing in a queue.

Leelu and Damru soon got a chance to enter. Blacky and Geetu were upset about seeing them go in.

“Big animals like us are standing out, while that tiny Damru is inside.” The two charged in elbowing aside others in the queue. Inside they saw Damru and Leelu talking to Mili, a member of the camp.

“Can we donate blood too?” asked Damru.

“Yes, why not! If all tests are clear you can easily donate blood. By giving blood you maintain good health. You will also come to know how healthy your body is,” Mili explained.

“There is no problem in donating blood?” questioned a scared Damru.

“There is no need to worry if your body is healthy. Besides we take blood from a healthy person only. Blood is not taken from a weak body. We take only one unit of blood which is produced again in two days. There is no discomfort to the donor,” Mili said with a smile.

“Can the donated blood be given to anyone?” Damru inquired.

“Yes! Only to them whose blood group matches the donor,” Mili replied. “Blood group?” he asked.

“Yes. Blood also has groups. They are of four types.” Mili explained.

“I think I have heard about them. Perhaps there are four groups. ‘A’, ‘B’, ‘AB’ and ‘O”, “Damru said thoughtfully.

Mili smiled and glanced at the place where the blood tests were being conducted. A few people were waiting there. She looked at her watch and said, “Come I will show you. You are right. There are four types of groups-A’, ‘B’, AB’ and ‘O’. ‘AB’ is the only blood group which accepts blood from any group, but can give blood only to someone with “AB”. Therefore, it is called the universal acceptor.

“Like our Jumbo Dada who eats everyone’s lunch, but does not give anyone,” Leelu said and all three laughed.

Mili continued, “O’blood group is just the opposite of AB’. It can give blood to anyone, but cannot accept blood from any group. A patient with ‘O’blood group needs blood from ‘O’only.”

“Then this blood group must be very useful. It can help anyone.” They said.

“Yes! That is why it is called the ‘Universal Donor’. No special condition is required for other groups. ‘A’ blood group can take blood from ‘O’or ‘A’ and give to ‘A’ and AB”. Similarly ‘B’ blood group can take from ‘B’ or ‘O’ blood group and be given to ‘B’ or ‘AB’. Therefore the blood group is checked first. Once the blood is collected, it is stored safely and can be used anytime. Now I am taking your blood sample for the test. Do not be afraid,” said Mili and brought the needle near Damru’s finger.

As soon as she did this Blacky, immediately rushed and said, “I will donate blood first, then this tiny one.”

“Okay brother you can get it done first,” said Damru as he stepped aside.

Mili took Blacky’s blood sample. It was sent for testing

First Kanny, the tortoise put the blood sample in a liquid. Within minutes the blood went down, formed a ball and rose up.blood-donation-camp

She said, “If this comes up in the form of a ball, then the hemoglobin is alright, and if it stays at the bottom then it is less.”

Then she performed three more tests, and then said, “Everything is fine. Get your Blood Pressure checked”.

“Why do I have to check that? It must be alright too. Don’t you see how healthy and strong I am?” murmured Blacky. Then he got his BP checked.

“Your blood pressure is very high therefore you cannot donate blood. Only those who have normal blood pressure can donate blood. It should be 120-90,” Sikku, the fox, a worker at the camp explained to Blacky.

Blacky was staring at her in astonishment. He could not believe that someone as healthy and strong as he could not donate blood. He went and sat in a corner crestfallen. By now Damru’s blood sample was taken and the tests were conducted.blood-donation-camp

“Everything is normal,” informed Mili and asked for the BP checkup.

Sikku checked and said, “Your blood pressure is normal 120-90. You can donate blood.”

“What if the pressure was low?” Damru asked.

“It would be an issue, as pressure too high or low is not good,” Sikku explained.

“Then there is no problem if I donate blood.”

“No! No! There is no problem. You are absolutely healthy. Go ahead,” said Sikku.

Damru went eagerly towards the bed. Blacky was watching all this with a downcast face.

“Blacky why are you sad? Damru is absolutely fit though he is thin. If you are fat doesn’t mean you are healthy,”  said Mili.

Geetu saw Blacky’s fallen face and said, “Forget it! Instead of growing fat, we should look after our health. We should become healthy and strong like Damru. Look he is donating blood. We came here for the sake of our pride, but he had come to help the needy. We should also think similarly.”

Blacky looked at Damru. He went up to Damru and said, “Friend you are doing a very noble thing. We should all come forward to do this without fear. Please forgive me. I tried to trouble you for no rhyme or reason.”blood-donation-camp

Blacky said this and went out of the camp. Damru heaved a sigh of relief. He was happy for doing a good deed, as well as for bringing about a change in Blacky’s thinking.

Naughty Baddy Gets Caught

Blacky bear was returning home carrying a pot filled with honey.
Suddenly, a lot of thorns got stuck in his foot. He cried out in pain. He sat down and kept the honey pot on the side and started removing the thorns from
his feet.

“Why are there so many thorns on the path?” thought Blacky to himself.

After some time, when Blacky had removed all the thorns, he went to pick up his pot but saw that it had disappeared. It was no longer on the spot where he had kept it. He started searching for the pot everywhere but could not find it.

“What are you looking for?” said Teetu butterfly who was passing by.

“Someone stole my pot that was filled with honey,” said Blacky sadly. He explained what had happened to Teetu.

“Was your pot brown in colour?” asked Teetu curiously.

“Oh yes! How do you know?” asked Blacky surprised.

“While I was coming here, I saw Baddy fox running away with a brown pot,” Teetu replied.

“Oh, how dare he! I am going to teach him a lesson. But I don’t know how to find him,” said Blacky in dismay.

“Why don’t you ask Cheeku rabbit to help you? He is the best detective we have in Champakvan. He can surely help you,” suggested Teetu.

“Thank you for the idea Teetu, but I don’t think Cheeku will help me this time,” said Blacky, his face falling even more.

“Why do you say that?” asked Teetu, surprised.

“It so happened, a few days back there were some guests at Cheeku’s house.
They wanted to taste the honey from our forest. Cheeku came to me to ask for some honey but I refused to give it to him despite having some with me. Cheeku is upset with me since then,” Blacky told Teetu.

“What you did is wrong Blacky. A good neighbour should always help other neighbours in times of need,” said Teetu.

“I agree it was my mistake. I forgot we need each other in times of difficulties. Not sharing the honey was not good behaviour on my part. Now you tell me how I should patch up with Cheeku?” said Blacky who was feeling bad.

“I can help you if you promise to not behave so selfishly in future. I will talk to Cheeku and ask him to help,” said Teetu.

Blacky promised Teetu that he would be a better neighbour and Teetu and Blacky left to meet Cheeku.

Teetu explained everything to Cheeku and Blacky apologised. They both hugged each other. Blacky then told Cheeku what had happened to him.

“Was the pot filled with honey till the top?” Cheeku questioned.

“Yes, the pot was filled to the brim. Also, there was also no lid over it,” said Blacky.

”And Teetu said that she saw Baddy running with the pot on his shoulder. Teetu, which direction were you coming from?” Cheeku asked Teetu.

“I was coming from the west,” said Teetu.

“Hmmm… The Black Mountain forest is to the west. Baddy must be staying in that forest for some days,” Cheeku thought to himself.

“Each criminal leaves behind some clues that help us find them. Let us walk towards the Black Mountain and see if we can find anything,” Cheeku said to both of them.

After some time, they were standing on the way towards the Black Mountain.
Everyone knew that naughty thieves usually lived there. Even during the day, the way was quiet and empty.

“See, there are a few drops of honey on the ground. The honey must have spilled while Baddy was running,” said Cheeku pointing towards the drops on the ground. “This clue is enough for us to get to him.”

“How can a few drops of honey help us catch Baddy?” asked Blacky, confused.

“With the help of this robotic fly,” said Cheeku as he removed something from his pocket. “This fly has a sensor. It can smell the honey and find out if there is more of it in the area of 100 kilometres from here,” explained Cheeku with a smile.

“So, this robotic fly will reach exactly where Baddy has kept the honey pot,” said Teetu with excitement.

The robotic fly smelled the honey and flew away. Cheeku then took out his laptop and opened it. After some time they could see Baddy on the screen. He was enjoying the stolen honey along with his friends.children fiction

“See how the robotic fly has shown us exactly where Baddy is. The robotic fly has a spy camera in it because of which we are able to see Baddy on the screen here,” Cheeku told both Teetu and Blacky.

“Now let us inform inspector Jumbo elephant about Baddy’s new hiding place in the Black Mountain,” said Cheeku.

“But I want to punish him and teach him a lesson,” said Blacky angrily.

“The police are there to teach him and his naughty friends a lesson. You should be happy, Blacky. You are getting your honey pot with some honey still left inside it,” explained Cheeku.

The police caught Baddy and his friends. Blacky shared the remaining honey with Teetu and Cheeku. He realised there is more happiness in sharing than having everything by himself.