In her trouble about the loss of the king's love Kadali-Garbha longed
for her father, for she felt sure he would be able to help her. So
she determined to go to him. With the aid of the wise woman who
had given her the packet of mustard seed, and who had been her best
friend at court, she disguised herself as a messenger, and, mounted
on a strong little pony, she sped along the path marked out by the
young shoots of mustard, reaching her old home in the forest before
the night fell. Great indeed was the joy of Mana Kanaka at the sight
of his beloved child, and very soon she had poured out all her sorrow
to him. The hermit was at first very much enraged with his son-in-law
for the way in which he had treated Kadali-Garbha, and declared that
he would use all the powers he had to punish him. "Never," he said,
"shall he see your dear face again; but I will go to him and call
down on him all manner of misfortunes. You know not, dear child,
I have never wished you to know, that I am a magician and can make
the very beasts of the field and the winds of heaven obey me. I know
full well who has made this mischief between you and your husband,
and I will see that punishment overtakes them."
"No, no, father," cried Kadali-Garbha; "I will not have any harm done
to my dear one, for I love him with all my heart. All I ask of you
is to prove to him that I am innocent of whatever fault he thinks I
have committed, and to make him love and trust me again."
It was hard work to persuade Mana Kanaka to promise not to harm the
king, but in the end he yielded. Together the father and daughter
rode back to the palace, and together they were brought before
Dridha-Varman, who, in spite of the anger he had felt against his
wife, was overjoyed to see her. When he looked at her clinging to Mana
Kanaka's arm, as she had done the first time they met, all his old
love returned, and he would have taken her in his arms and told her so
before the whole court, if she had not drawn back. It was Mana Kanaka
who was the first to speak. Drawing himself up to his full height,
and pointing to the king, he charged him with having broken his vow
to love and protect his wife. "You have listened to lying tongues,"
he said, "and I will tell you to whom those tongues belong, that
justice may be done to them."
Once more Kadali-Garbha interfered. "No, father," she said; "let
their names be forgotten: only prove to my lord that I am his loving
faithful wife, and I will be content."
"I need no proof," cried Dridha-Varman; "but lest others should follow
their evil example, I will have vengeance on the slanderers. Name them,
and their doom shall be indeed a terrible one."
Then Mana Kanaka told the king the whole sad story; and when it was
ended the wicked woman who had first thought of injuring the queen,
and the barber who had helped her, were sent for to hear their doom,
which was - -to be shut up for the rest of their lives in prison. This
was changed to two years only, because Kadali-Garbha was generous
enough to plead for them. As for the third person in the plot, the
old witch of the cave, not a word was said about her by anybody. Mana
Kanaka knew well enough what her share in the matter had been; but
magicians and witches are careful not to make enemies of each other,
and so he held his peace.
Dridha-Varman was so grateful to his father-in-law for bringing his
wife back to him, that he wanted him to stop at court, and said he
would give him a very high position there. But Mana Kanaka refused
every reward, declaring that he loved his little home in the forest
better than the grand rooms he might have had in the palace. "All I
wish for," he said, "is my dear child's happiness. I hope you will
never again listen to stories against your wife. If you do, you may
be very sure that I shall hear of it; and next time I know that you
have been unkind to her I will punish you as you deserve."
The king was obliged to let Mana Kanaka go, but after this he took
Kadali-Garbha to see her father in the forest very often. Later, when
the queen had some children of her own, their greatest treat was to
go to the little home, in the depths of the wood. They too learnt to
love animals, and had a great many pets, but none of those pets were
kept in cages.
17. What is the chief lesson to be learnt from this story?
18. Which of all the people in this tale do you like best?
19. What do you think is the greatest power in all the world?
20. If you had been Kadali-Garbha would you have forgiven those who
tried to do you harm?
 The city which occupied the site of present Patna was known as
Patali-Putra in the time of Alexander the Great.
 There are seventy-two versions of this tale in vogue amongst
the high castes of India; the one here given is taken from Raj-Yoga,
the highest form of Hindu ascetic philosophy.