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Sadhana and Vandana were best friends. Both studied in class III. They were always together, living in homes, opposite to each other.

One day, Sadhana was in her garden, when she saw a colourful butterfly sitting on a rose. She ran to catch it, but the butterfly flew away. It kept fluttering from one flower to another, sometimes landing on the trees. Sadhana kept running after it, but could not catch it.

After a while, Vandana came to the garden. She saw Sadhana jumping and running around. “What are you doing, Sadhana?” she asked.

Sadhana whispered, with a finger on her lips, “Shhh… The butterfly will fly away.” Meanwhile, the butterfly had once again flown and sat on top of a guava tree.

“Just sit quietly. The butterfly will come down on the grass,” said Vandana.

“Okay, let’s wait for it,” Sadhana agreed.

The butterfly flew again, fluttering around, came and sat on the green grass. Vandana promptly took out her handkerchief, placing it on top of the butterfly and gently caught it.

“Come on, give me the butterfly,” said Sadhana.

“Look, there’s another one there. You can catch that. This one is mine,” Vandana said pointing to another butterfly.

“No way! I have been after this one, for so long! Give it to me, it’s mine!” Sadhana replied.

“But I caught it! So, it’s mine now!” said Vandana.

“No, I want it!” Sadhana was adamant.

“Ok! Then go and catch it,” said Vandana and released the butterfly from her hand. It flew up high and disappeared. Sadhana looked at Vandana in disbelief.

“I will not talk to you anymore!” said Sadhana angrily. “Our friendship is over!”
“Fine, I also don’t want to talk to you either! I too, break my friendship with you!” Vandana declared and walked away.

Both went home angry. For some time, they remained upset with each other and
did not care about their broken friendship.

But after a couple of days, they were anxious and wanted to talk to each other again. However, neither wanted to take the first step. Both wanted the other one,
to talk.

Sadhana and Vandana tried to show that they had new friends and were happy playing with them, but they were unable to enjoy without each other. They would slyly look at each other and when their eyes met, they would quickly turn away.

Now, they couldn’t tolerate the pain of being apart any longer.

“Mummy, Vandana doesn’t speak to me anymore,” Sadhana said to her mother.

“Why? Did you both fight?” asked her mother.

“Yes, we were catching a butterfly in the garden. She caught my butterfly and took it. That’s why we broke our friendship,” explained Sadhana.

“What? Why were you catching butterflies again? I had told you not to do that! Butterflies are garden fairies. They are the life of a vibrant garden,” said her mother.

“Sorry, mummy. I will remember that and not trouble them again.

But please tell Vandana to talk to me,” Sadhana pleaded.

“I can’t tell her. You should tell her, that, yourself,” said her mother.

“No. I do not want to be the one taking the first step. That will show I am weaker than her.”

Meanwhile, Vandana made the same request to her mother.

“Mummy, tell Sadhana to be friends with me again and heal our broken friendship,” said Vandana.

“Why don’t you tell her directly? Oh, I get it. You think, it will be an insult if you take the first step,” teased her mother.

“No, no… I don’t want to show her that I need her friendship and that I am sad without her,” Vandana said.

The next day, Vandana was passing by a shop when she noticed Sadhana buying something. Both of them saw each other and quickly turned their faces away.

Feeling bad about this incident, Vandana went home, sad. In the evening Sadhana’s mother came to Vandana’s house.

“Why don’t I pretend to be sick? Sadhana will surely come to visit me.” Vandana covered herself with a quilt and lay on bed.

Seeing her lying down, Sadhana’s mother asked her, “Why are you in bed? Are
you unwell?”

“Aunty, I have a cold and my head is aching. I feel sick,” Vandana, put on an act.

Vandana’s mother touched her head. “But you don’t have a fever. Wait, I’ll give you a pill, for your headache,” she said.

“Get well soon, Vandana,” wished Sadhana’s mother and left.

On reaching home, she told Sadhana about Vandana’s sickness. As soon as Sadhana heard this, she came running to see her best friend. On seeing Sadhana, Vandana threw the quilt and jumped out of bed.

“You were not feeling well. Are you ok?” asked Sadhana concerned about her friend.

“I was not well, because we fought. But now you are here and talking to me, I feel perfectly fine!” replied Vandana, hugging her friend.

“Oh! So, this was a trick! You pretended to be sick to heal our broken friendship,” Sadhana laughed.