The Exact Portrait
One day Birbal saw the court’s artist quite worried. Birbal personally knew the artist. He was a humble gentleman. Birbal enquired with the artist. “You are looking gloomy. What’s the cause?”
The artist said, “Sir, I’m really worried. One big businessman is after ruining my reputation, which I have earned till now.” “What has happened?” enquired Birbal.
“Huzoor, one day I met the businessman in some party. There he was challenging that no artist could portray him perfectly. Hearing this, I accepted his challenge and fixed up the time with him for drawing his portrait. A few days latter when I finished the portrait, I visited the rich man’s house and showed the portrait to him. But seeing the portrait, he screamed – You have portrayed me in beard! I tried to convince him that at the time of portrait making, he was possessing beard. But he did not listen to me at all.”
The artist was in tears. Birbal consoled him and enquired further. The artist said, “Sir, then I humbly asked him to give me one more chance to prove my deftness. He agreed. After a few days I visited his house with a new portrait, I was quiet confident this time. But when I saw him he was cleaned shaved man. As I feared, he shouted – “this can’t be my picture. This picture is showing moustache, whereas I don’t possess it. It I tried to convince him that it was not my fault. However, he declared that I failed to fulfil my challenge. I asked for one more chance but he tricked me the next time too. Only after portraying him for five times, I could understand that his motive was evil and wanted to let me down.
The artist then showed Birbal all the five portraits. All the portraits were indeed nice ones. Birbal was kind hearted man, he decided to help the artist. He briefed the artist and accompanied him up to the rich man’s house. Birbal remained outside the house, whereas the artist entered inside.
As soon as the rich man saw the artist, he said mockingly, “O great artist! You are here again! It seems, you have come again with some of your rubbish item.” The artist humbly replied, “Sir, I’m sure, what I’ve brought today will surely match with your face.”
Saying so, he passed on a framed piece to him. The rich man held it in his hand and looked at it. But it was just a mirror.
He screamed angrily, “What a silly joke it is? You’ve brought just a mirror!” Then entered Birbal, who was standing outside and was listening to their conversation.
Birbal said, “Are you not happy with the mirror which is shoeing your exact picture? I think only mirror can depict your present face. You don’t need a portrait but a mirror, my friend.”
The rich man was very much ashamed to see and hear Birbal. He begged his pardon for his folly and paid the artist well.