එක එක කාලෙට එක එක දේවල් මිනිස්සුන්ගෙ ඔළු වලට එනවනෙ. ලඟදි දවසක පොත් වගයක් හම්බඋනා. හරියටම කිව්වොත් J. K. Rowling ලියපු “The Tales of Beedle the Bard” පොතයි. Rudyard Kipling ගෙ “Just So Stories” පොතයි. දෙකම සුරංගනා කතා පොත්.
ඉස්සරවෙලාම The Tales of Beedle the Bard පොත කියවල ඊට පස්සෙ Just So Stories පොතෙන් බාගයක් විතර කියවං යද්දි අළුත් අදහසක් ඔළුවට ආව. මාත් සුරංගනා කතාවක් ලිව්වොත් කොහොම හිටීද. ඒ වෙද්දිත් ඔන්න සුරංගනා කතාවක් වගේ එකක් ඔළුව ඇතුලෙ පැළවේගෙන එනව.
Just So Stories පොත පොඩ්ඩකට පැත්තකින් තියල මං සුරංගනා කතාව ලියන්න ගත්ත. මේං! කතාව ලියවෙනව ඉංග්රීසියෙන්. පිට පිට ඉංග්රීසි පොත් කියව්වම ඔහොම තමයි. එතකොට ඔළුවෙ තියෙන සිංහල වචන ටික තේ මණ්ඩි වගේ යටට ගිහිං ඉංග්රීසි වචන ටික උඩට එනව. ඉතිං ඔළුවෙ තියෙන අදහස එකට ඇමිණෙන්නෙ ඉංග්රීසියෙන්.
කතා සැකිල්ල ඉංග්රීසියෙන්ම ගොඩනැගිච්ච නිසා මාත් ඉංග්රීසියෙන්ම ලියාගෙන ලියාගෙන ගියා. දැං හෙමීට සිංහලේට පරිවර්තනේ කරගෙන යනව. කතාව දිගයි. ඉතිං කෑලි වලට කඩන්නම වෙනව. ඉංග්රීසියෙන් ලියපු ටික නොදා ඉන්න ලෝබයි වගේ. ඒක නිසා ඉංග්රීසියෙන් ලියපු කතාවෙ පළවෙනි කොටස දාල ඊට පස්සෙ ඒ කොටසෙ සිංහල පරිවර්තනේ ඊලඟ පෝස්ට් එකෙන් දාන්නං.
දැං ඉතිං මං පණ්ඩිතය වගේ ඉංග්රීසියෙන් ලිව්වට මොකද ඒකෙ වැරදිනං හෝ ගාල ඇති. වර්ඩ් වල පිහිටෙන් අක්ෂර වින්යාසෙ ගොඩදාගන්න පුළුවං උනාට ව්යාකරණ දෝෂ ටික ඉතුරු වෙලා ඇති. වෛවර්ණ ව්යාකරණ අච්චාරුවක් වගේ පෝස්ට් එක පේන්න බැරි කමකුත් නෑ. ඒක නිසා ඒ ගැන සමාවෙන්න... :)
Once, there was a prince.
Now, you might think that this prince was extraordinary in some way. But no! He wasn't that extraordinary at all. Actually, he wasn't that much different from you and I. He was a kind hearted, hard working individual who also had a hard time getting up early in the morning (like many of us). He was even a bit stupid.
But unlike us the prince had to constantly fight in battles.
Well, not that he wanted to fight in the first place. He would've loved a quieter and a relaxed life. But life comes with the fair share of troubles. For our prince and for princes and princesses like him it was the “Institution of Test” which was at the far west corner of the country (as any such dreaded place would be).
From time to time the institution will send out parties of warriors to fight princes and princesses of the land. (Why? Because that was what the institution did. ‘Testing’ the battle worthiness of princes and princesses of the land. And how come you test someone on that ground without dueling them?)
Neither a prince nor a princess escaped without confronting them. It was an absolute rule in the land that all princes and princesses must face these warriors.
What if they refused fighting, you may ask?
The consequences were tragic. One that refused to fight the warriors of the institution was marked as ‘Useless to the Land’ and was denied of everything. Food…, shelter…, remedy…, and everything else. So there was no other choice. If one wanted to survive, one had to fight. It was as simple as that. (And we think going to school and writing our exams are hard… huh!)
Those who fought and survived the first wave of attack from these warriors will have to face a second, then a third; each battle being harder than the previous one. And if one survived all of these battles then they will be given a chance to embark on the ‘Journey to Knighthood’. A journey that will take the traveler to a place called ‘Summit’. One who completes the journey and reach Summit will be awarded the title of ‘Knight’. This was a very, very big deal.
Then they will have to come down from there to face life as everyone else! (duh?)
Let me tell you… It’s the exact ‘Darwinian Law’ when it comes to fighting these warriors. Either you hunt them or mercilessly become hunted by them. That’s why our prince - and others like him - had to take arms.
He was a much younger prince when he emerged victorious from the “Battle of Five”. And then, few years later it was time for him to confront the eleven “O’ Warriors” (they had ‘O’s painted on their shields). Now that was a challenge, as for these eleven warriors had eleven unique battle strategies. Our prince fought valiantly. And in the end he had defeated all eleven of them.
Then came “A’ Warriors” (they had ‘A’s painted on their shields). They were the ones that sent cold shivers along the spines of those who confronted them. They always came in fours and struck with such ferocity and precision, that many had to abandon the fight at the mid way point. Extensive, exhaustive training was required in order to defeat them. And this is where our prince made a dire mistake.
It was so careless of him. To underestimate these A’ Warriors.
“I have defeated eleven warriors before. Another four wouldn't be much…” he thought.
And instead of refining his battle tactics, strengthening his armor and sharpening his sword; he spent more time at leisure. Dark clouds were gathering in the horizon. But he ignored them.
Days turned into weeks; weeks to months and months to years. And finally the day came that A’ Warriors summoned our prince to the battlefield.
This time he was unprepared and was easily outmatched. Soon he fell. His spear broken, his shield dented and all of his arrows used up never making the damage he intended to do. For the first time in his life he lost a battle. It was a sorry sight indeed. Who’s to be blamed, but for himself?