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Short Stories - The Crystal Ball

The Crystal Ball

In the south of Spain, there was a small village whose people were very joyful. The children played under the shades of trees in the gardens of their homes.

A shepherd boy named Nasir stayed near the village with his father, mother and grandmother. Each morning, he took his herd of goats up the hills to find a suitable place for them to graze. In the afternoon he would return with them to the village. Each night his grandmother would tell him a story - the story of stars. This story really interested Nasir.

On one of those days, as Nasir was watching his herd and playing his flute, he suddenly saw a wonderful light behind a flower bush. When he approached the bush, he saw a transparent and very beautiful crystal ball.

The crystal ball was glittering like a colorful rainbow. Nasir carefully took it in his hand and turned it around. With surprise, suddenly, he heard a weak voice coming from the crystal ball. It said, “You can make a wish that your heart desires and I will fulfill it.”

Nasir could not believe that he had actually heard a voice. When he made sure that he had indeed heard that voice from the crystal ball, he was very confused. He had so many wishes that he could not decide upon one particular wish. He said to himself, ‘if I wait till tomorrow I will remember many things. Then I will make my wish.’

He put the crystal ball in a bag and, gathering the herd, happily returned to the village. He decided that he would not tell anyone about the crystal ball.

On the following day also, Nasir could not decide what to wish for, because he really had everything he needed.

The days passed as usual, but Nasir was still unable to make his wish. But he appeared to be very cheerful. The people around him were amazed to see the change in his disposition.

One day, a boy followed Nasir and his herd and hid behind a tree. Nasir, as usual, sat in one corner, took out the crystal ball and for a few moments looked at it. The boy waited for the moment when Nasir would go to sleep. When Nasir did fall asleep after a while, the boy took the crystal ball and ran away.

When he arrived at the village, he called all the people and showed them the crystal ball. The citizens of that village took the crystal ball in their hands and turned it around with surprise. Suddenly they heard a voice from inside the crystal ball, which said, “I can fulfill your wish.” One person took the ball and screamed, “I want one bag full of gold.” Another took the ball and said loudly, “I want two chests full of jewelry.” Some of them wished that they would have their own palace with a grand door made from pure gold, instead of their old houses. Some others wished for bags full of jewelry.

All their wishes were fulfilled, but still the citizens of the village were not happy. They were jealous because the person that had a palace had no gold and the person that had the gold had no palace. For this reason, the citizens of the village were angry with each other and stopped speaking to each other. The gardens in the village where children used to play were no more. There were palaces and gold everywhere. The children became terribly unhappy. Only Nasir and his family were happy and contented. Every morning and afternoon he would play the flute.

One day the children of the village took the crystal ball to Nasir. The children said to Nasir, “When we had a small village, we all were happy and joyful.” The parents also spoke. They said, “In one way or another, all of us are unhappy. The luxurious palaces and jewelry only bring us pain.”

When Nasir saw that the people were really regretful, he said, “Even though the crystal ball asked me to wish for something, I have not done it so far. But if you really want everything to return to its own place, then I will wish for it.”

Everyone happily agreed. Nasir took the crystal ball in his hand, turned it around and wished that the village would become the same as it was before. In a moment, the palaces disappeared, the green gardens appeared, and the same old village full of trees was there.

Once again the people started to live happily and the children played under the shade of trees. Nasir continued his contented life every day, playing his flute at sunset. Its sweet sound was heard throughout the beautiful green village.

Moral: We should be happy with whatever we have and not be greedy.

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