Story of the King of the Black Islands – Alif Laila
The young man started telling his story. He said ‘My father’s name was Mahmud Shah. He was the ruler of the Black Islands, the Black Islands being the four famous mountains. His capital was at the same place where it is a pond with colorful fish. I am telling you the whole story in detail so that you will know the whole situation. When my father was seventy years old, he died and I sat on the throne in his place. I married my uncle’s daughter. I loved her very much and she loved me too.
We lived happily for five years, then I realized that he did not have the same love for me as before. One day after lunch she went to the bathroom and I lay in my bedroom. The two maidservants who used to swing the fan to the queen sat by my head and started swinging the fan to give me comfort. She started talking slowly, knowing me to be asleep. I had not slept but started pretending to sleep to listen to him. A maid said that our queen is very evil that she does not love such a beautiful and gentle husband. You are right in the second quote; Leaving the king alone at night, the queen does not know where to go and the poor king does not know anything. The first said that even if this poor man knows how, every night the queen mixes some intoxicant in her sherbet and gives it to him,
‘My old friend, I am so sorry to hear that it is beyond my power to describe it. At that time I thought it appropriate to handle my anger and, after a while, got up taking the fingers as if I was really sleeping. After sometime the queen also came back after taking a bath. When he lay down to sleep after the meal, the queen, as usual, brought me a cup of sherbet. I took the cup and threw it out the window, shielding his eyes, and handed the empty cup to his hand as if I had drank the whole sherbet. Then we both lay down on the bed. Thinking that I was sleeping, the queen got up from the bed and read a mantra aloud and turned her face to me and said that you sleep in such a way that you never wake up.
‘ Then she left the room wearing a gaudy dress. I also got up from the bed and started following him with a sword. She was only a little ahead of me and I could hear her footsteps. But I was following him slowly with my feet in such a way that he did not get any impression of my coming. She passed through many gates. All of them were locked, but with his mantra-power, all the locks were being opened. When she left the last door and went into the garden, I started hiding behind the door to see what she was doing. She proceeded from the garden and went inside a small forest which was surrounded by bushes. I also went inside that forest through another route and started looking for it by rolling my eyes here and there.
‘After a while I saw that she was walking hand in hand with a man who seemed to be a slave slave, complaining that I love you with all my soul and meditating on you day and night. I live and you are in such a condition that you do not talk directly to me, you always use bad words to me. What do you want after all? Do you want to test my love? You know my power I have so much power to say that before sunrise, I should make all these palaces underground and make all this magnificence completely deserted and no one can be seen here except wolves and owls and the stones which are in the palaces here are quite enough. Fly back to the mountain and go. Despite having so much power, I keep falling at your feet because of love and you don’t care about me.
‘The queen was walking while talking about this, holding her hand in the hand of her negro lover. When they reached near the bush where I was hiding, I came out and slashed the negro’s neck with a full sword. He stumbled and fell. I understood that he was dead and I slipped away in the dark. I left Rani because she was dear to me as well as my uncle’s daughter. The queen was shocked to see her lover falling. She tried to heal her lover with the power of mantra but she could only save him from dying. The condition of that nebshi had become such that he could neither be called alive nor dead. I slowly returned to the palace. Even while returning, I heard that the queen was crying out for her lover’s injury. I left him crying like that and came to my bedroom and was sleeping on the bed.
‘When I woke up in the morning I found the queen again sleeping next to me. It was clear that she was not really sleeping, only pretending to sleep. I stood up leaving him alone, I went to my court wearing royal clothes after completing my daily tasks. When I came to my palace after disposing of the affairs of the whole day, the queen was wearing a mournful black robe, and her hair was torn and she was plucking it. I asked him that how are you behaving, what is the reason for this display of anger. She said, King Salamat, I am sorry, I have received three mourning news today, that is why I am mourning wearing black clothes. When I asked what the news was, he said that my mother died, my father was killed in a battle and my brother died after falling from a height. I said the news is bad but you don’t deserve to mourn like this,
After this she went to her room and kept crying and beating like this after separating from me. I knew the reason for her misery, so I did not even try to extinguish her. This was the case for a year. Then he said that I can’t handle sorrow, I want to build a tomb and stay in it day and night. I allowed him to do the same. He built a huge mausoleum-like building with a heavy dome which is visible from here and named it the mourning. When that house was finished, she brought her injured lover Habshi there and started living there herself. She used to feed him some medicine once a day and also used to cast magic spells. Yet he had suffered such a fatal wound that only his life was stuck on the strength of medicines and mantras. He could neither walk nor speak, only looked at the queen.
That was enough to keep the queen’s love alive. She used to console her mind by talking of love to him for hours. She used to go near him twice a day and used to sit beside him for a long time. I knew what she was doing, yet carried on doing everything as simply as I knew nothing. But one day I could not stop my curiosity and I wanted to know what she does to her lover. I sat hiding in that tomb in such a place from where all the things of the queen and her lover could be seen but none of them could see me.
‘The queen started saying to her lover that what could be more unfortunate than that I see you in such a state of compulsion. Believe me the truth, seeing your condition hurts me so much that it would not have happened to you yourself. My life, my life-master, I sit in front of you for hours talking and you do not answer even a single word of mine. If you talk to me even one thing, then my mind should be very patient, but I will be very happy. Well, just seeing you, I keep patience.
In this way the queen sat in front of her lover and continued to babble. My fool did not see this condition of my queen and her love arose again in my heart. I quietly came to my palace. After sometime she came to the palace for some work, so I said that now you have expressed a lot of grief towards your relatives, now live a simple life like a queen. She started crying and said that the emperor should not ask me to do this safely. The more I used to explain to him, the more he started crying. I left him at his place.
‘She remained in this condition for two more years. I once again went to the mortuary to see the condition of the queen and the ninja. I sat down again and started listening. The queen was saying that dear, now two years have passed and it has been the third year, you have not even spoken to me. My crying and lamentation has no effect on your heart. Looks like you don’t think I’m fit to talk to. That’s why you close your eyes seeing me now. My dear, once you open your eyes and look at me. How much am I falling in love with you?
Hearing these words of the queen, my body caught fire. I came out of that tomb and facing towards the dome said, O dome, why don’t you swallow this woman and her lover who is a human demon. Hearing my voice, my queen who was sitting beside her naughty lover came out in anger and came near me and said that because of you the unfortunate wicked one has kept me in mourning for years, because of you my beloved has become in such a pathetic condition and He has been injured for so long. I said yes, I have killed this evil demon, it deserved this and you are also not eligible to live because you have mixed all my respect in the soil.
Saying this, I drew my sword and wanted to kill the queen, but she did such a magic that I could not lift my hand. Then he slowly started reciting some mantra which I could not understand at all. After reciting the mantra, she said, now see the power of my mantra, I order that you remain a living human being above your waist and become a stone below your waist. As soon as he said this, I became as he had said, that is, I have lived neither among the living nor among the dead. Then he picked me up from the mourning and brought me to this place. He turned my city into a pond and did not allow a single person to live there. All my courtiers and subjects were loyal to me, so he turned them all into fish with his magic. The white fish are Muslims, the red ones are fire-worshippers, the black ones are Christians and the yellow ones are Jews.
‘The four black islands of which I was the king, the woman made four hills and established them around the pond. His anger did not subside even after making my country desolate and making me half a stone. She comes here everyday and hits my shoulders and back with a hundred whips so hard that my blood spills on every injury. Then she puts a rough black lotus made of goat’s hair on her back towards my shoulders and puts on her a heavy cloak of gold stellation. She wears this dress not for my honor but to hurt me and makes fun of me and says that you are the king of four islands, then why don’t you save yourself from this humiliation and plight.’
Shahrajad continued the story and said that after telling this story, the King of the Black Islands raised both his hands towards the sky and said, ‘O Almighty God, O Creator of all the worlds, if your happiness is in this, that is how you fall on me. If injustice and atrocities happen, I will bear this thing with pleasure. I will thank you in any case. I have full hope with your kindness and love of justice that you will surely rescue me from this dreadful misery one day or the other.
When the explorer king who came there heard all this story, he was very sad and he started thinking how to remove the misery of this innocent answer emperor and how to punish his Kulta Rani. He asked her where does your shameless queen live and where is her unfortunate lover, to whom she visits every day. The young king said to him that I had already told you that he was kept in the mortuary on which there is a dome. One way to that mourning is through the room below where we are at the moment. I do not know where the sorceress lives, but every morning she comes to me to punish me and after beating me again goes to her lover and gives him some arak so that he remains alive. .
The visiting king said that in reality there will not be a more compassionate person than you, your biography is such that it should be written in history and indelible. Don’t you worry too much. I will try my best to relieve your suffering. After this the visiting emperor slept in the same room. Because it was night time. The poor king of the Black Islands sat and kept awake like this. The woman’s magic did not keep her fit to lie down and sleep.
In the early hours of the next day, the visiting emperor entered the funeral pyre through the secret passage. Hundreds of golden lamps were burning in the mourning and it was so decorated that the emperor was very surprised. Then he went to the place where the queen’s nebulous lover was lying in an injured condition. Going there, he struck the hand of the sword in such a way that the half-hearted man died immediately. The king dragged her body into a well in the backyard, and returned to the mortuary, hiding the drawn sword with him, and lying himself in the place of the negro so that the queen could kill her when she came.
After a while the sorceress reached the same building where the king of the Black Isles was lying. He began to beat her so mercilessly that all the buildings reverberated with her cries and cries. He kept shouting and praying to stop his hand and have mercy, but the evil one could not stop beating him without a hundred whips. After this, as usual, she came to mourning, putting on her a coarse lotus and a heavy robe of zari on her and sitting in front of the emperor, whom she thought to be her lover, began to mourn.
She said, ‘Dearly how unfortunate I am that I want you with all my life and you do not love me at all. My day and night are peaceful. You explain to me the reason of your sufferings.
Though what tyranny and injustice have I done on my husband for you. Still, my anger has not subsided and I want to punish him more severely because the same unfortunate has done such a condition to you. But you don’t tell me anything, your lips are always dry. Perhaps you want your silence to trouble me so much that I die in agony. If not more for God’s sake, do one thing to me so that my sad heart may get solace.’
The emperor said in a drowsy voice, ‘Lahaul bala quwwat ila billa wahel vi ali wal azim (There is none other than the Supreme and Great God who is neither powerful nor fearful) The emperor had read this verse with disgust because according to Islamic belief, reading this verse Satan flees from; But it was a pleasant surprise for the queen to hear anything. She said that dear, you really said that I have been deceived. The king said disgustingly to the negroes, ‘You are not fit to talk to you or answer any of your questions.’ The queen said, ‘Dear life, what crime has happened to me that you are saying such a thing.’ The king said, ‘You are very stubborn, I didn’t listen to anyone, so I didn’t say anything. Now if you ask, I will tell. Your husband’s crying day and night has made me sleepless. If it had not been for his screams, I would have been fine when I could have talked a lot. But you have made him half a stone and then you kill him every day. He is never able to sleep and cries day and night and groans and does not even let me sleep. Now you tell yourself what to say to you and what to talk about.
The sorceress said do you want me to stop killing her and bring her back to her previous state. If you are happy in this then I can do it now. The king who had become a negligent said that I really want that you can go at this time and completely free him from misery so that his cry does not disturb my rest. The queen went to a room of the mortuary and took water in a cup and blew some mantra on it that it started boiling. Then she went to the room where her husband was and sprinkled water on him and said, ‘If God is very unhappy with you and he has created you like this, then stay in this form but if your natural form is not like this then my magic regain your former form. As soon as the queen said this, the king came in his real form and stood up happy. The queen said that if you want wellness, then run away from here immediately. If I ever come here again, I will kill myself. The poor man left quietly and hid in another building to see what happened.
From there the queen again came to the mourning and said to the negligent king that I have done whatever you wanted, now you get up so that I can get peace. The king said in a nebulous voice, ‘I have got relief from what you have done, but not complete rest. Your tyranny is not yet completely gone and my peace is not yet completely returned. You have ruined the whole city and turned its inhabitants into fish. Every day in the middle of the night, all the fish take out their heads from the water and curse both of us, that is why I am not able to get healthy. You first restore the city and its inhabitants, then talk to me. After doing this, you lift me with the support of your arm.’
The queen immediately agreed to this too. She went to the bank of the pond and sprinkled some energized water on that pond. Due to this, all those fish became male and female and instead of the pond, the city became full of roads, houses and shops. The courtiers and bodyguards accompanying the emperor who had not yet returned to their cities were thus astonished to find themselves in a completely new city far away from their country.
Having made everything as before, the sorceress again went to the mortuary and started chirping with laughter and joy, saying that dear, according to your wishes, I have done everything as before so that you may become completely healthy and healthy. Now you get up and walk by hand in my hand. The king said in the voice of the negroes that come to me. She passed. The king said and come near. She came close to him. The king jumped up and clasped the sorceress’s arms and did not give her a moment to calm down and fired her sword so hard that it broke in two. The emperor also put his body in the same well in which the corpse of the Nebshi was thrown. Then he went out and started looking for the king of the black islands. He too was waiting for her hiding in a nearby building. The visiting king said to him, don’t fear anyone now, I have put the queen in hiding.
The king of the Black Islands politely thanked him and asked whether you now intend to go to your city. He replied that I will go to the city but you come with us now, eat and rest for a few days in our palace, then go to your black islands.
The young king said, have you considered your city closer from here? He said what is the doubt? I had come to your palace within four to five hours. The king of the Black Islands said, ‘Your country is on the way from here for a whole year, that sorceress had brought my country closer to your country with her magic power. Now my country is back in its place.
The visiting emperor was worried. The king of the Black Islands said, ‘It is not a matter of distance and proximity. I cannot survive for the rest of my life because of your favor. The visiting emperor was still puzzled as to how he had gotten so far away from his country. The king of the black islands said that why are you wondering so much, you yourself have seen the magic power of that woman. The visiting king said that if there is such a distance between the two countries, then if you do not want to go to my country, then do not go; But I do not have any son, so I want that I should also make you the crown prince of my country so that you can also take care of my kingdom after my death.
The King of the Black Islands accepted this and after three weeks of preparation, after arranging the army and funds, the visitor proceeded with the Emperor to his capital. He loaded the valuables of the gift on a hundred camels, and with fifty of his trusted feudatories and gifts, he left for his capital with the visiting emperor. When that emperor’s capital remained on the way for a few days, the clerks were sent to give the residence of the emperor’s return to his slaves and the residents of the city.
When he reached near his city, all his chieftains and courtiers came outside the city to welcome him and after thanking God on the return of the emperor, told that all is well in the kingdom. On reaching the city, the emperor was warmly welcomed by the residents of the city.
After saying the whole situation, the emperor announced to make the king of the Black Islands his crown prince and two days later he was made the crown prince and the feudatories, courtiers presented him to the crown prince. After a few days, the king and the prince called the fisherman and gave him a lot of money because because of that the prince’s suffering was cut.