Squirrel and Jackal were brothers-in-law, married to sisters.
Then Elephant said, "Chop down my forest! You can marry my daughters, and the one who works hardest will inherit my kingdom."
So Squirrel and Jackal left their wives and worked for Elephant.
Squirrel felled two trees for every one Jackal felled.
In ten days, Elephant's forest was gone.
But Elephant had lied! There were no marriages; there was no inheritance.
"You worked harder, Squirrel," he said, "so I bless you with a happy life up in the trees. You, Jackal, were lazy, so men will pursue you down on the ground."
Inspired by: "How Squirrel and Jackal Became Distant" in The Ila-Speaking Peoples Of Northern Rhodesia, Volume 2 by Edwin Smith and Andrew Murray Dale, 1920.
Notes: You can read the original story online. The author notes: "The Ba-ila see some relationship or likeness between the squirrel and the jackal, seemingly because of the bushy tail each possesses; and this tale is meant to explain how they have become separated, so that the squirrel lives in trees practically immune from annoyance from men, while the poor jackal living on the ground is every one's chase."
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