The Kid’s Story – What Caused the Tortoise’s Crooked Shell?: A catastrophic hunger once ravaged an extinct animal kingdom. All of the crops were in danger of dying because it had not rained for two solid years.
The animals prayed and hoped for the dreadful drought to end, but it didn’t since there weren’t enough clouds in the sky to produce rain.
The shrewd tortoise Ijapa resided beyond the village with his wife and two boys.
Ijapa was no longer able to mislead them into parting with the meagre amounts of food they had because the famine was so severe and was already having a terrible impact on all the animals.
Ijapa left his house one morning, exhausted and starving, intending to look for food scraps there. However, there was nothing there, and the tortoise stayed just as hungry as before.
But just as the tortoise was about to head back home, he noticed the rabbit Ehoro hopping in the direction of the market. Ehoro had a peculiar air about him. He had a glowing, well-fed, joyous appearance.
Ijapa was interested.
He pondered, “Why is Ehoro looking so healthy and I am so hungry?” He cried out as he walked up to the rabbit, bowing his head as though in mourning.
Ehoro hurried to greet Ijapa when he saw him. What is it, dear friend?” the sympathetic bunny enquired.
My father is ill and is in the hospital, Ijapa said. Despite the fact that my wife is carrying our third child, I am concerned about her health.
And only last night did I learn that my mother-in-law is starving to death as a result of a lack of food. I’m really sorry, but there’s nothing I can do.
Ehoro had his doubts because it was common knowledge that the tortoise was sly and not always to be trusted. Ijapa, however, excelled as a performer and quickly won the rabbit’s affection.
Ehoro instructed, “Meet me near Ore Brook after dusk.” ‘I will support you despite my reservations,’ Just hoping I won’t regret doing this.
As soon as night fell, Ijapa ventured into the pitch blackness in search of Ehoro, who was waiting by the creek.
Following their greetings, both animals entered the dense woodland, with the rabbit taking the lead and the tortoise trailing closely behind. They soon arrived at a short trail leading to a clearing in the heart of the forest, hidden among the trees.
When the rabbit came to a stop, he drew the tortoise to him. Do you understand that what you are about to witness must be kept a secret? The rabbit clasped his hands around his mouth and started to sing as the tortoise nodded in unison.
A long, white rope appeared out of nowhere. Ehoro seized the rope and started to ascend. Ijapa caught hold of the rope after a brief hesitation and followed the rabbit into the night sky.
The rabbit and tortoise ascended steadily until they reached the very top of the rope, where there was a wonderful fluffy cloud in the shape of a door. A friendly, elderly bunny with a smile stood there when the door opened.
Ehoro embraced the elderly rabbit, calling out joyfully, “Mother!” My friend Ijapa is here for dinner, he says.
Ehoro’s mother extended her hand to the tortoise and offered it a friendly handshake. Come in and join us for dinner. The table is set, thanks.
Ijapa spewed when he saw what he saw. The most opulent dinner he had ever seen was spread out on a huge table.
There were exotic fruits and fresh fish of various varieties that had been herb-marinated and grilled. Additionally, there was yam, rice, and delectable soups. The ravenous tortoise jumped right in and devoured everything he could get his hands on.
Ehoro warned against overindulging lest you be unable to descend the rope and return by foot to the settlement.
The tortoise kept eating until he ultimately slouched back in his chair and looked around the room sheepishly, his belly sticking out like a gigantic balloon.
They took some time to relax before Ehoro decided it was time to head back home. Ijapa caressed his protruding belly before gently rising to his feet and moving toward the door.
Aren’t you going to bring some food for your family back home? Mother of Ehoro questioned Ijapa.
No thanks, Ijapa answered. I can’t bring any food with me since I’m so stuffed.
The rabbit and the tortoise then returned to the forest and made their separate ways to their homes while Ehoro’s mother let down the rope.
Ijapa arrived home to find his family still asleep, so he snuck into bed, covered himself with a blanket, and dozed off for twelve hours.
Ijapa soon woke up, and he was famished. I need to eat, he told himself. “I need food now,” you might say.
Ijapa had a thought at that point. “I’ll return to Ehoro’s house while he’s still at work,” he said. When she lets off of the rope, I’ll conjure up some lies to tell his mother while stuffing my tummy once again.
Ijapa cleared his throat and started singing the same song that Ehoro had performed the night before when he got to the clearing in the jungle.
Ijapa’s voice sounded very gruff, which made the song sound less lovely and sincere than when it was sung by Ehoro.
That doesn’t sound like my son, Ehoro’s mother reasoned. The elderly rabbit paused briefly before deciding to release the rope. As she lowered the rope into the clearing below, she reasoned that “maybe he has caught a cold.”
When the rope fell to the ground, the cunning tortoise was thrilled and grabbed it with both hands to start climbing as rapidly as he could.
Ijapa heard a voice shouting from the forest below while he was halfway up the rope.
Where do you suppose you’re going, by the way? Come back down right away.”
It was Ehoro, and you could see he was furious. The rabbit yelled, “Mother, we’ve been deceived!” Ijapa kept climbing the rope while thinking about the feast that was waiting for him above.
The second time Ehoro reached out to his mother, nothing occurred. The smart turtle then carried on ascending the rope towards the sky.
Ehoro breathed deeply, cleared his throat, and started singing to his mother above the skies.
“Now that’s my boy!” the mother of Ehoro shouted upon hearing her son’s voice. But who made the initial call?
The elderly rabbit looked down through the clouds to what was going on above. She then noticed the smart tortoise clambering up the rope in her direction.
Ehoro yelled, “Mother!” from a great distance down. Get the rope cut! Remove the rope!
The elderly rabbit went to get a big carving knife and started hacking at the rope. The knife initially appeared to have no impact because it appeared that the rope was composed of iron.
However, Ehoro’s mother persisted in making frantic cuts at the rope until the tortoise had to cling to a very thin thread of it.
Then, with one more hack with the knife, the old rabbit cut the rope. Ijapa fell to the ground, heading for the woodland below.
Ijapa was tossed around in the air by the winds as they whipped back and forth, landing heavily on his back in the trees.
A large boulder that was resting on the forest floor was the sole thing that could, unfortunately, cushion the cunning tortoise’s fall. Ijapa’s shell split so many places when he hit the rock that it took on the appearance of a jigsaw puzzle.
Long after, the tortoise finally woke up. Despite being extremely confused, he managed to move and discovered that he actually wasn’t in that much pain.
However, his shell remained jigsaw puzzle-like and would never again assume its previous gorgeous, smooth, spherical shape.