Hello, This is Jana, and welcome to Storynory. I’m here with a story which has its origins in ancient Persia. Dive with me into a world where a vigilant parrot and a carefree cat weave a story of friendship, adventure, and the quirks of their very different personalities.
In ancient times, two unlikely friends lived in the forest. One was a parrot with flaming yellow feathers, named Apollo after the sun god. The other was a cat named Pardus, which means Panther, though in reality, he was nothing like a panther.
These friends were as different as night and day. Apollo, the parrot, was ever alert. Perching high in the trees, he kept a keen eye on everything that moved below. If he spotted a human hunter sneaking through the bushes or a tiger stealthily prowling the undergrowth, he would flap his wings and squawk at the top of his lungs:
“Emergency! Emergency! Danger in sight!”
At this signal, all the forest creatures - deer, rabbits, squirrels, and even the slower-moving tortoises - would scamper, scuttle, or crawl to safety as fast as their legs, paws, or shells would carry them.
Pardus, on the other hand, was more of a 'take-it-easy' kind of cat. He spent his days lazily chasing butterflies, taking long, leisurely naps under the shade of the trees, and occasionally attempting to catch his tail.
But as the saying goes, opposites attract. Apollo was quite the chatterbox, always bubbling with stories and observations. From his high perch, he had a bird's-eye view of the world, and he loved nothing more than sharing all the wonders he had seen with Pardus. The rainbows, the stars, the silvery moon, and even the towering walls of the nearby city were fodder for Apollo's animated storytelling.
He also liked to drop in references to his triumphs, mentioning stories of when he saved the day by spotting predators from afar. To tell you the truth, he was quite a big-headed parrot regarding his own merits.
Pardus, for his part, perfectly played the part of the most attentive listener. He would fold back his ears, and now and then, he would purr appreciatively,
"Fascinating, simply fascinating."
His deep, rumbling purrs were music to Apollo's ears, encouraging him to embellish his tales with even more details and excitement.
They spent many a happy hour together, Apollo chattering away and Pardus purring contentedly.
One fateful day, a hunter ventured into the forest. Unfortunately, the Apollo was caught off-guard. He was deep in one of his conversations with Pardus when suddenly, a net dropped on them. A hunter had caught them!
Now, the hunter normally took the game he caught to the market. But on this occasion, he thought to himself:
“We need a cat at home to catch the mice. And as for the flaming yellow Parrot, he will make a stunning gift for my wife and can keep her company while I’m away hunting.”
So he decided to keep Apollo and Pardus and took them both home.
Oh, but if he thought Pardus would turn into a mouse-catching machine, he was sorely mistaken. Pardus' philosophy towards mice was, "Those little things? What have they ever done to me? And besides, chasing them around sounds like far too much trouble."
And Apollo, well, he didn't take to domestic life either. Being cooped up in a cage did not suit him at all. His once-gleaming feathers lost their lustre and began to moult. Rather than being the delightful chatterbox he once was, his squawking turned into a cacophony of annoyance, especially since he didn’t know any human words.
So, one day, the hunter admitted to his wife, “My love, I fear I may have erred in bringing those two good-for-nothings home. I shall take them to the market at week’s end.”
Off he went on a long hunting expedition, leaving his pregnant wife, who was worn out and in need of rest. She decided to nap, blissfully unaware that a pair of nefarious burglars had spotted her husband leaving and plotted to break into the house.
Meanwhile, Apollo, ever the sentinel, was peering through the bars of his cage and out of the window. He spotted the suspicious duo hauling a ladder up to the window. Immediately, he started to squawk and flap about in a frenzy that would have put a whirlwind to shame.
His commotion was so uproarious that the neighbours came running to see what the fuss was about. They arrived just in time to see the burglars attempting to climb through the window. Without hesitation, they pushed the burglars, who tumbled back into the street in a most undignified heap.
When the hunter returned home, he heard all about the story. You can imagine how happy he and his wife were with the parrot. They praised him, fed him nuts and berries, and even let him out of his cage to flap around the room.
The lazy cat meowed,
“Hey, what about me? I was in danger, too! They could have cat-napped me!”
But nobody was listening to the lazy cat. After that, six times a day, he had to listen to Apollo recounting how he stopped the burglars. It was the parrot’s proudest moment and favourite story ever, and he never stopped squawking about it. The poor cat was driven mad and had to run away and live on what scraps he could find for himself.
And as for Apollo? Well, he became the family’s hero. All the future children were brought up with tales about how his vigilance saved the day.
And even though he missed his friend Pardus, he knew he had found his calling as the watchful protector of his new home. He would not dream of leaving because he had an important job to do here that gave him a sense of purpose.
As for Pardus? Well, he carved out a niche for himself as a legend, the cat who determined that he was simply too fabulous to be anyone's pet, opting instead for the life of a roamer. And given that his new lifestyle occasionally left him with an empty stomach, he was finally compelled to master the art of mouse-catching. After all, necessity is the mother of invention!
And that was the story of The Clever Parrot and the Laid-Back Cat. Now you’ve heard the story, what is your opinion? Do you think the Parrot was really smart or just big-headed? And what about the motives of the two friends? What did the parrot-like best of all? And what did it take to make the cat stop being completely lazy?
And if you like our stories - but are just a bit older than our target audience - or if you are grown up and want to wind down to a fascinating story or piece of audio, we have another podcast called Relaxivity, which is just for you! Our stories and verses on Relaxivity are rich and interesting but presented in a relaxing style. When I say “relaxing,” I don’t mean a big yawn, but they are in a style that we hope you will find pleasing and immersive. So do subscribe -for free - to Relaxivity.