Parrot’s prattle – Short Story

Newly married Sushant and Seema, whose finances were quite tight, lived in a tiny one-room flat rented out by a tyrannical landlord, Mr. Khan, who lived next door. The rent was too steep and the facilities sadly inadequate, but they did not know how to hint at it to the thick-skinned landlord, and could not afford anything better.

One day, Mr. Khan dropped in and declared in his usual peremptory fashion, “I’m going away on a 2-week vacation. I was just wondering what to do with my pet parrot, Mithu. Then I remembered you.

The bird is an absolute delight; he’s just learning to talk. I’m sure you’d like to keep him and look after him until I return!”

The young couple had no choice but meekly agree. Mr. Khan happily went off on his vacation after dumping his pet on them.

On his return, Mr. Khan was delighted to find his parrot lively, healthy, and apparently very well cared for. However, he soon realised that he had underestimated his tenants. For, as soon as he had brought him back home, Mithu began to talk, declaiming over and over again –

“The rent’s too high – take pity on poor Sushant!
The rent’s too high – take pity on poor Sushant!”