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Tale by Moonlight// The Inkwell Writing Prompt

We gathered around the campfire waiting for Baba Tunde to tell us a story. He sat on a woody chair with his back fully rested on it as he chewed kola nuts to help him stay awake through the night. It was cold, the fire was already dying down, but he managed to keep himself warm in his sweater. We could see his dangling eyes through the illumination of the moonlight, he cleared his throat.

"What did I say?" he asked.

"You haven't said a word," we replied. That was his way of knowing our attention was not divided.

"Good! We can start as you all are paying attention" he said. Baba Tunde made it his duty to always tell us a tale by moonlight. It was always a story of the tortoise portraying how wise it was compared to other animals in the animal kingdom.

"Today, I'm going to tell you a story of a tortoise and hare". We sat quietly round the fire with our eyes fully focused on him.

"Once upon a time" he began, " there lived a lazy hare, while other animals were busy ploughing and sowing, the hare slept and refused to work. Go take my field and farm Other animals offered the lazy hare which pretended he had no land to plough. My hoe is not that good he would say and the hare kept making excuses not to work. Harvest time came, lazy hare started to suffer hunger but no one was willing to share his farm produce with him so, he decided to disguise himself as a ghost at night when there was moonlight, every animal that saw him ran into hiding while the hare comes out from it hiding place and steal enough food for the day, this continued for a while and the other animals reported the situation to the king. The king employed guards but the guards were equally afraid of the ghost figure and they also ran away to hide." He paused, then chewed some of the kola nuts he was holding.


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It was 9;00pm, the weather was now cold, our rattling teeth could be seen from the moonlight that brightened the evening. We waited patiently for the continuation of the story as Baba Tunde remained silent for a while.

"So, the king made an announcement that anyone who was able to capture the ghost that came by moonlight to steal people's farm produce would be rewarded awesomely. No one came out. After a few minutes, the tortoise came out and promised to get the thief. He made a statue of a man and rubbed a glue around it. The lazy hare came to the farm the next day and still disguised himself as a ghost, everyone ran except one person. The lazy hare was surprised to notice one person still standing. He acted like a ghost a few more times but the man was still standing. In annoyance, the lazy hare walked to the standing man and gave it a slap. Unfortunately, the hare's foot glue to the image, he slapped the image a few more times until all it's feet got stuck on the statue. The next day, the hare was seen glue to the statue and everyone knew it was the lazy hare that disguised himself as a ghost".

Baba Tunde ended his story that night with a moral lesson not to be lazy in life because it will only bring us disgrace.

"That's all for today, see you tomorrow for another tale by moonlight" he said.

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