79. The Bandit's Ghost
A bandit stole the village bell and fled to the hills where a tiger killed him. Whenever people heard the bell ringing, they whispered in fear, "It's the bandit's ghost!"
But it was only a monkey ringing the bell.
The village-chief offered a reward for anyone brave enough to defeat the ghost and retrieve the bell.
A wise woman guessed the truth.
"I can defeat the ghost!" she proclaimed.
She took no weapons, just fruit. She fed the fruit to the monkey, and thus she snatched the bell.
She returned to the village ringing the bell and claimed her reward.
Inspired by: Hitopadesha, or, The Book of Good Counsel translated by B. Hale-Wortham
Notes: It is in Book 2, Story 5.