Two Tigers Fighting
Once upon a time there were two powerful nations at war.
As each were equal in might the fierce continuous engagement had lasted for over two years wasting away manpower, arms and draining the treasury with neither of them gaining an advantage.
The long drawn out war presented certain advantages to an adjoining kingdom. The Sovereign of this neighbouring country, was considering intervention to bolster his country’s prestige and might. He called a war counsel and asked his ministers for their opinion. The ministers were divided; some claimed this was an opportunity that should not be missed, others claimed it would only draw their country into this never ending conflict and the losses would far outweigh any advantages. Only one junior minister, Roltan, had remained quiet on the subject. After several hours of discussion the King, left with a serious quandary, dismissed the entire counsel, save for Roltan.
“You have abstained from voicing your opinion, any reason for that? “ The King addressed Roltan when the chamber had emptied.
“Your Majesty is most discerning, “Roltan begun with certain eloquence. “ Your Highness, if I may I be so bold as to relate a short story about what had happened to me once. When I was in my teens, to test my mettle, I had once undertaken to hunt a pair of Tigers that were terrorizing a village.
To lure the tigers to a trap, I had first tied an ox to the trunk of an ancient tree in a clearing just outside of the village perimeter.
When the tigers, as expected, descended upon the captive prey, I readied myself to strike. Fortunately, I had with me a seasoned hunter, who quickly advised me to hold still. “Wait, he said. “ If you confront them now they will both attack you in unison. The beasts are just beginning to devour the ox. When they are halfway through, finding the meat rather savoury, they will fall into strife as they contend for the choices parts. After the fray the smaller one will be bested while the big one will suffer injury. Then you will easily finish them both and win certain fame for killing two tigers at once. “ Roltan paused, collecting his words before he spoke.” Never before has our Kingdom been in a more advantageous position to reach its true potential. “
The king eyed this young recruit with an appraising smile. It was in fact his secret ambition to ultimately subjugate these other kingdoms all under one rule, his rule.