A Short Story :

The Three Questions

This Short Story
The Three Questions is quite interesting to all the people. Enjoy reading this story.

King John was the King of England. He did not like anyone else to look ricer than himself. The Abbot of Canterbury was rich. He was enjoying luxurious life. The King did not like the Abbot. He was in great anger. He sent his soldiers to bring the Abbot. The soldiers brought him before the King. The King asked, “Who is greater? The King or an Abbot? Then how bold of you to enjoy much better than the king? You are plotting to become the King of England. It is a crime. Therefore you must die."

The Abbot was greatly frightened. He said very humbly. “Your Majesty, I have never used others’ money for my use. Is it a crime to spend my own money for my needs?"

“Yes," replied the King. Then he added, “It is a crime to live grander than the King."

The Abbot trembled in fear.

The King continued. “But I shall give you a chance to get pardon. Answer my three questions correctly to my satisfaction."

Then he gave out the three questions.

1. Tell me how much I am worth.
2. How long will it take for me to go around the world?
3. What I am thinking now?

The Abbot listened. His confusion and fear increased rapidly. He could not speak. Finally he begged for time to answer. Three weeks were given. The Abbot left the palace in a dejected mood.

On the way, he went into Oxford University and Cambridge University. He met great professors and learned men. He asked them for answers to these three questions. They were not able to find the suitable answers. He was returning home safely. On the way he met his shepherd boy.

The shepherd asked the Abbot, “Why are you looking so sad, my master?"

“My dear shepherd, the King has set three questions for me. I have to find answers to his satisfaction, or else die for plotting against the King. The questions are difficult. I have only three days more," replied the Abbot.

The shepherd said, “My Lord, let me go in your place. I shall meet the King. I shall answer the three questions to his satisfaction." Then he added, “People say I look very much like you. Therefore permit me to wear your dress. The king will not be able to find out."

The Abbot agreed.

Immediately the shepherd put on the Abbot’s dress. He exactly looked like the Abbot. He then went to meet the King.

The King had not expected the Abbot so soon. He was not able to find the difference. He said, “I am happy, Abbot. You have kept your promises. Now are ready with the answers?"

The shepherd in the Abbot’s dress replied, “Yes, Your Majesty. I shall try to answer to the best of my ability."

The King asked, “What am I worth? I am the King of England."

“Your Majesty," replied the shepherd, “according to the Bible, Jesus, the King of Heaven and Earth, was sold for thirty pence. Your worth must be one pence less. It should be twenty nine pence."

The King had a sense of humor. He started laughing. After some time, he gave out second question. “How soon can I ride around the world?"

The shepherd said, “Your Majesty, you must rise with the Sun, ride with it the whole night. In this way, you will be able to go round the world in twenty four hours."

Again the King had a merry laugh. Then he looks seriously at the shepherd. He said, “Tell me quickly. What am I thinking now?"

“Sire, you are thinking I am the Abbot. But I am not the Abbot. I am only his poor shepherd. I have come to ask pardon for the Abbot and for myself." Then he quickly removed the Abbot’s dress. Now he looked like a shepherd. He knelt down before the King for pardon.

The King was not at all angry. He started laughing. And he laughed for a long time. Finally he said, “I am pleased with your intelligence. I shall make you the Abbot."

But the shepherd said, “Your Majesty. I can not read and write. I can not become an Abbot."

The King said, “Then you shall receive a pound a week as long as you live. Go home and tell the Abbot. I have forgiven him."

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