So, it’s Day 3. I have the topic. My writing prompt is ready (“Once upon a time). The house is actually quiet, so I have at least 15 minutes to just write…… On your mark, get set, go!
Once upon a time, in a world very similar to our own, there was an ancient land called Bharat. Within Bharat was a small kingdom called Videha. This is where our story begins.
The ruler of Videha was King Janaka. Under his long reign, Videha was prosperous. The people were happy, and life was peaceful. There was just one problem. King Janaka was aging and he didn’t have an heir. For many years, Janaka and his beautiful queen, Sunayana, prayed to the gods for a child. But the gods remained silent. No child was born.
One day, a senior advisor in Janaka’s court, named Vyasa, approached the king in the throne room. “Sire,” Vyasa beseeched him. “You have heard me talk of the Seers for years. The time has finally come. You need their help.”
Janaka’s brow furrowed. Everyone in Bharat had heard of the Seers. They were a group of golden-eyed mystics who lived in the kingdom of Mahishūru. They followed the teachings of an Asura called Mahishasura. “Demons,” Janaka sputtered at the thought of an Asura setting foot in his kingdom. “You want me to ask those demon Asuras for help?”
“Janaka, I am your friend,” Vyasa looked him in the eye. Few others would dare do the same thing. “We have known each other since childhood. I will not just sit beside you and feed you idle words in this time of need.”
“I still have time,” Janaka protested, flushing angrily. He was older, but still one of the most powerful kings in Bharat.
Vyasa raised an eyebrow. He was accustomed to Janaka’s ego, but the time for soothing injured pride had ended. “Sire, please allow me to speak honestly,” When Janaka nodded, Vyasa continued. “Your enemies are mobilizing against you. They are waiting for the first sign of weakness to pounce on Videha. You must have an heir and time to train him. Without one, Videha is in danger.”
“But to ask an Asura for help is outrageous,” Janaka scowled. His distaste for Asuras was deep-rooted. Devas and Asuras had been fighting each other for centuries. It was only in the last two decades that a tentative peace agreement had been forged between the two groups. But the distrust still lingered. “There must be another way.”
“My brother, there is no other way,” Vyasa said softly. It pained him to admit it. He didn’t want to approach the Asuras for help either. “I’ve seen it. This is the only path to an heir.”
“So, who do you propose we call?” When Vyasa raised an eyebrow, Janaka shook his head. “He won’t come,” Janaka crossed his arms. “Even if I ask him to. There is too much bad blood between our kingdoms.”
“Yes, he will.” Vyasa smiled. When his visions were clear, they were never wrong. “Ask him and he will come.”