The Boy and the Master III

Like the tortoise I am


“Patience!” said the master and stopped.

The boy was bleeding with the blow he had just received onto his right arm. The sword of his fellow knight was dipped into the blood of the boy. The boy was trying to hide his pain, the tears were on the verge of a break out. The moment was getting harder to pass by.

First, second, third, his blood kept on dripping from the sword.

“He is bleeding master,” said the fellow knight.

“It was you who made him bleed,” said the master sternly.

Did he not care that the boy was bleeding? Or did the boy deserve the pain that had now overtaken his mind. He dropped onto the ground, unconscious.

“Take him in,” said the master.

The fellow knight carried him on his shoulders, almost dragging him in.

“Slowly,” commanded the master. “He is not yet dead.”

The knight carried him inside and provided for his wounds. The master stared into the blue sky. He could see the snow clad mountains far off the boundary of the Kingdoms.

Hours later the boy woke up. His right was tied onto with cotton and wrapped around his shoulders. He felt a slight dizziness in his head. He felt the pain on his arm radiate into his torso. Suddenly his attention shifted from his pain to the person who had entered the chamber. It was the master.

“Patience, my boy,” said the master.

The boy gazed into the eyes of the master. He had taught them skills, new tricks with the sword, and the boy had overdone his part.

“I wanted to be the most skilled,” he said with a slight regret in his voice.

“Do you know the mountains clad with snow in the north of the kingdom?” the master asked.

The question took the boy by surprise. The mountains had nothing to do with what had happened to him.

“Yes, I do,” said the boy and nodded.

“Tell me, are they the best of their kind?” he asked.

“If I may say, they are,” said the boy.

“Then know this my boy, that they were not made at once. The plates of the great land we live on did not collide once but many, many times. Thus, you may see the high mountains today,” the master said as his poured the hot water onto the glass.

The master prompted the boy to drink the water. He did. It was hot. It burnt a slight tip of his tongue. He put it back on the table.

“You can drink the water my boy, if you try all at once. But wouldn’t they burn your tongue?” exclaimed the master.

“They would, they have already,” said the boy.

“And would you be able to use your tongue if they were all burnt right from the first try?”

“No, I wouldn’t,” the boy remarked.

“You need your arms for a long time, to serve you, to serve the purpose you have. You need your spirit for a long time, to achieve the purpose you have set on your mind,” said the master and looked at the mountains of the kingdom at the north, glazing with the sun over them.

“Like the tortoise you may be, slow but never stopping, paced and always learning. The earth wouldn’t turn the journey of a thousand years at once,” said the master.

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