Fiction

Open the Door

by Sidhartha Mishra

Once there lived a wise king who ruled a large kingdom. He was very much loved by his subjects who simply adored him.

He had a very wise minister who was there since his father’s tenure. Now the problem started when the wise minister of the king breathed his last.

Now the king was in a fix. He wanted to appoint a person as a minister who would be equally capable and worthy like his wise minister.

The king made an announcement in the whole kingdom that whosoever wants to be appointed as the minister of the state should come forward and give their names. They would get all the facilities including high pay and all the amenities.

Thousands applied!

All the applicants were called by the king and told that all would be given a task which they have to complete. And whosoever completes it at the earliest would be appointed as the minister!

Now the task was, All the applicants would be taken into a suite in the palace and the door would be locked from outside. There would be only one way to come out of the suite – the door itself. Anyone who opens the door and comes out first would instantly get the appointment!

Hearing this impossible task, more than 99% of the people returned. And only three remained!

Out of these three, two were stalwarts who knew all the Vedas, Puranas, and Upanishads. They were proven pandits and were famous in the entire kingdom.

The third person was a simpleton who had no knowledge of Vedas or Upanishads, nor had any following among the masses.

First three days the three competitors were put in a room of the palace and were given delicious food and all the amenities; and given time to prepare for the final day test.

While the two pandits spend restlessly their days and nights going through all the scriptures in order to find a mantra or sacred hymn to open the door; the third person simply ate the tasty palace food and slept without any tension!

Seeing the reckless attitude of the simpleton, the intelligent guys thought that the former is here only to eat and enjoy. He has nothing to do with the competition!

Now the final day arrived. All three were locked inside the suite. There were no windows, only one door locked from outside!

While the two pandits were busy shuffling the pages of divine books, the third guy ate first and then was sitting putting his back on the wall; when suddenly after some time he went near the door and opened it!

To everyone’s amazement, the simpleton was declared the winner, and made the new minister!

The next day, the king asked the new minister, that how did he open the door?

To this the latter replied that he was seeing the two reputed pandits spending their time in finding a divine solution to open a door that was locked from outside. When they did not find any, he was sure that there was none either!

Now the question arose in his mind that why would a great king like the maharaja give a task which would not be possible to complete!

So he just wanted to check whether the door was really locked from outside or was just closed!

To his good luck, the door opened when he pushed it and he was appointed as the minister!!

About the Author:

Sidhartha Mishra works in JSW company and is an MBA graduate. He lives in Sambalpur town in Odisha state. Writing is his passion and his stories and poems are regularly published in online platforms like Indian Periodical, Pratilipi, StoryMirror, Reedsy, etc. Recently one of his poems has been published in a book titled ‘The Zen Moments’ which is an Anthology of poems.

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