Once upon a time, a young hawk lived on a tree. He had no friends and was very lonely.
One day, he saw a beautiful she-hawk. He liked her so much that he asked her to marry him.
The she-hawk said, “I will agree to marry you only on one condition. You should have friends because friends are always ready to help in times of trouble.”
“I don’t have friends, but I will soon make friends,” he said and flew away.
The hawk went to a tortoise and said,”Will you be my friend.”
The big and strong tortoise was a very good fellow. So he agreed to be his friend.
The hawk then went to an eagle. He requested him to be his friend. The eagle also agreed.
During his search for friends, the hawk happened to see a lion outside his den. He put up the same question to the lion, “Will you be my friend?”
The lion said, “Yes. If you ever have a problem, let me know. I will be happy to help you.”
The hawk thanked him and flew away. After getting such lovely friends, he was very happy. He went straight to the she-hawk and said, “I have won a few friends. Now will you marry me?”
The she-hawk had always found the hawk very handsome and good-natured. So she agreed to marry him.
They got married at a ceremony attended by their friends.
The hawks were very happy together.
After sometime, they decided to have babies. The she-hawk laid some eggs. When these eggs hatched, two sweet little baby hawks were born. They were all very happy in their nest.
One day, two hunters came and sat under their tree. One of the hunters said,”What a bad day! We have not caught even a single animal today.”
“Let us catch some fish from the lake,” suggested the other hunter.
They tried a lot but could not catch any fish. They were so tired that they decided to spend the night under the tree.
Under the tree, there were many mosquitoes which did not let them sleep. The hunters decided to burn some leaves and twigs to drive away the mosquitoes. When the fire was lit, the heat and the smoke reached the nest of the hawks. The baby hawks felt uneasy and started crying.
As the hunters heart their cries, they looked at each other with disbelief. One asked the other, “Did you hear that sound? Are there birds on the treetop.”
The she-hawk woke up her husband and said, “Look dear, we are in danger! Go quickly and call your friends, otherwise these hunters will kill our children.”
The hawk at once flew away to call his friends for help.
He first went to the eagle and asked for help. The eagle told him, “Don’t worry. Go back to your nest. I will teach these hunters a lesson.”
The eagle then went and dived into the lake. Soaked in water, he flew over the fire. The water from his wings fell on the fire. His repeatedly doing so doused the fire.
As the fire went out, it became dark. Now the hunters could not see anything. They were forced to climb down the tree. But as soon as they came down, they lit the fire again. The eagle again put it off. This went on till midnight.
The she-hawk said to her husband, “The eagle must be tired. Quickly call your other friends.”
The hawk went to the tortoise who at once came to help his friend.
On seeing the big and strong tortoise, one of the hunters said, “Leave the birds! Let us catch this tortoise.”
The hunters took off their turbans and tied them to the legs of the tortoise.
They tied the other end of the turbans to their waists and started pulling the cloth to take the tortoise home. But the tortoise was too strong for them.
As they started pulling him, he pulled them in the opposite direction and dragged them to the middle of the lake.
Feeling that it was almost impossible to catch the tortoise, the hunters untied the cloth from their waist and quickly swam back.
The dejected hunters decided, “Let us forget about the tortoise and get the birds.”
Seeing the hunters climb the tree, the she-hawk worriedly said to her husband, “Quick! Quick! Get more help! Call your other friends.”
The hawk went to the lion and informed him about the hunters who were troubling his family.
The lion got furious and said, “How dare the hunters trouble your babies! Come on, let us go and teach those men a lesson.”
The lion marched towards the tree. On seeing the two hunters, the lion roared loudly.
Hearing the roar of the lion, the hunters got scared and started trembling from head to foot.
When they saw the lion coming towards them, they quickly jumped into the lake and swam away, never to return.
The happy hawks thanked the lion, who stayed with them for sometime to make sure that they were safe.
Satisfied that the hunters wouldn’t return, the lion returned to his den.
The eagle and the tortoise also came to check if the hawks were safe. The hawks told them that they were safe and heartily thanked them.
Before going off to sleep, the hawk said to his wife, “Now I understand why you wanted me to have friends.”
“Friends are needed in times of both happiness and trouble. One needs friends not only to share smiles but also tears,” said the she-hawk.
“You are right. If we didn’t have friends, our children would have been caught by the hunters today. I am glad to have such caring friends.” said the hawk.
“Yes, we are really lucky to have such friends. We will also help them when they need our help,” said the she-hawk with tears in her eyes.
“Tomorrow we will invite them for dinner,” said the hawk.
Next day, they invited their friends for dinner to show their gratitude and love for them. All of them had a wonderful time together.