Selfish Eagle

in Stories

A group of eagles lived high up in a mountain overlooking a desert.

It was June and the temperature was rising to unbearable levels. Everything was getting drier than usual. All the animals hid in their burrows and came out only when they needed food.

With water becoming scarce, a small population of humans living in a village in the desert migrated to other places.

As the people moved out of the village, the eagles began to starve. They depended on the leftovers from the village homes.

Illustration by: Neha Kumari

Now, the eagles would go in search for food even before the sunrise. They would fly to areas far away from home to look for food. Most days they would find nothing to eat. But sometimes, they would find a small piece of food and share it.

Each eagle got less than a mouthful.

One day, while they were looking for food far away from home, one of the eagles spotted a piece of flesh under a rock. Greed made her selfish and she decided not to share it. The piece of flesh was not fully visible, but it was big enough for the eagle to eat its fill.

The eagle knew telling others about it would mean sharing it. So, she kept quiet.

That morning, the eagles returned home empty stomach. The selfish eagle kept mum and did not talk about the piece of flesh which she had seen.

My friends, it is getting difficult for us to find food together. We must live separately to reduce the burden on the group. I will, therefore, make the sacrifice of leaving this group so that I do not become a burden on someone,” the selfish eagle told others.

The eagle then left the group.

While others were starving, the eagle flew to the place where she had seen the piece of flesh. She was happy that she wouldn’t have to starve anymore.

The eagle landed near the rock and grabbed the piece of flesh in her claws.

As soon as she settled on a cliff to feast on it, she realized it was just a piece of brown-colored foam.

Heartbroken, the eagle knew she would not survive without the group. So, she flew back to rejoin the group.

When she returned to her group, she saw all the eagles eating from a heap of food. The food had been left there by villagers who had returned home after seeing clouds amass in the sky.

The eagle was left shamefaced. She knew her selfishness had cost her dearly.

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