Like The Prose Day#8

After writing quite a bit for several of the challenges last week, it’s nice to be given a limit of 500 words today. I’ve created a fable, but can any of you guess what the moral is?

Warthog’s Hidden Talent

Out on the Savannah plain, the monkeys were choosing teams for a football match. Warthog felt sweaty and heavy in the heat, hoping that someone would choose him soon. But no one wanted him on their team and, once more, he was forced to sit and watch as the others ran about.

“It’s not my fault I’m slow and clumsy,” he mumbled miserably.

“Watch out!” yelled a monkey suddenly as the football hurtled towards Warthog. With a grunt of excitement, Warthog heaved his heavy body in the direction of the ball and caught it … on his tusk.

“Warthog!” chorused the monkeys in disgust. “You’ve burst our ball!”

Warthog gazed sadly at the useless piece of punctured rubber dangling from his tusk. “I’m sorry,” he whispered dejectedly, but no one was listening.

“You ruin everything!” one of the monkeys yelled with frustration.

Warthog knew it was true. He lumbered away and let his tears fall.

Later that day, Warthog trudged back to the plain, wondering if the monkeys would give him another chance.

“What shall we do now?” he overheard from a perspiring monkey.

“Well,” replied another, “we can’t play football – SOMEBODY burst our ball.”

Warthog hung his head in shame.

“Races?” suggested another.

The first monkey shook his head. “I’m too hot.”

Silence ensued as everyone tried to think of a game that wouldn’t involve too much moving around. Then, “I know,” suggested one of the larger monkeys, “let’s have a tug-of-war.”

Several of them were despatched into the woodland to search for suitable vines which some of the others then plaited swiftly to produce a sturdy rope.

“Come on!” called one of the monkeys. “Let’s pick sides.”

Within seconds, they had formed two equal teams – well, not quite equal.

“We’re one short!” complained a monkey crossly.

Warthog ambled up with excitement. “Can I play?” he asked hopefully

The monkey sighed with exasperation. “Looks my team will lose then.” But there was no one else, so he told Warthog to join the back of the line and do what everyone else was doing.”

Quivering with anticipation, Warthog did as he was told. He wasn’t really sure what he was supposed to do next, so he just held onto the rope and sat down for a think.

“Heave!” shouted Warthog’s team.

“Heave!” replied the other side.

Then, something quite remarkable happened: the other side pulled with all its might, but they couldn’t budge Warthog’s team. “I wonder what everyone’s shouting for?” thought Warthog as he stepped back to take a better look.

The other side toppled like skittles.

“Well done, Warthog!” shrieked the rest of his team. “You’ve helped us win!”

“Did I really?” questioned Warthog, looking bemused. He wasn’t used to people being pleased with him.

“That’s not fair!” shouted the other side. “We want Warthog on our team next time!”

“You can’t have him – he’s ours!” replied Warthog’s team.

And so Warthog discovered his hidden talent and learnt that being slow and heavy sometimes has its advantages.

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