کتاب های ساده

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فصل 03

توضیح مختصر

  • زمان مطالعه 4 دقیقه
  • سطح ساده

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متن انگلیسی فصل

The Penance

Chapter one

The Beast

Octavian Ruttle was an active, friendly person. He liked people and it was important to him that people liked him. For example, there were three children who lived in the house next to his. Octavian thought that he should know their names, their birthdays and their favourite toys. But he only knew that their parents lived in India, and that they lived with their aunt and uncle. Occasionally, Octavian saw that the three children were looking down from the wall that divided the two properties. They never said anything; they just watched carefully everything he did.

Octavian was a farmer. He had pigs, chickens, and other animals. One day Octavian looked in the chicken coop and found some blood and feathers. Some animal had killed one of his chickens. More and more chickens were killed. Octavian looked carefully for the animal that was killing his chickens.

One day he saw a cat walking around the coop. He was sure that the cat was the killer. Unfortunately, the cat belonged to the three children. Octavian went to the children’s house, and explained his problem to their uncle. The uncle agreed that the cat had to be killed. ‘The children will be upset but you don’t have to tell them,’ was the uncle’s last word on the matter.

The next day, Octavian waited for the cat. When it arrived he shot at it with his hunting rifle - and missed it. The cat tried desperately to escape. Octavian shot again and missed it again. Then the cat ran out into a field where there was a large oak tree. It climbed up the tree and now it was trapped. Octavian walked up to the tree, pointed his rifle at the cat, and shot. This time he did not miss and the dead cat fell to the ground. Octavian told the gardener to bury it near the oak tree.

Octavian felt very bad about killing the cat but he had to do it: it was killing his chickens. He walked slowly back to his house. And as he walked near the wall he looked up and saw that the three children were staring at him. They had seen everything! Now they were looking at Octavian. Their expressions showed how much they hated him.

‘I am sorry, but I had to do it,’ said Octavian sincerely.

‘Beast!’ was the answer the three children gave with great intensity.

He saw that it was impossible to explain the situation to the children at that moment. He decided to wait a few days before he tried to make peace with them.

Two days later he went to the sweet-shop and asked for a large box of chocolates. He didn’t want the first two boxes that the shopkeeper showed him; one had a picture of a cat on the cover, and the other had a picture of some chickens. Finally the shopkeeper brought him a box decorated with flowers. Octavian sent the box to the children and later received a note saying that they had received the present.

The next day he felt much better when he went to look at his chicken coops and pigsties. He saw that the three children were looking down from the wall, but they were not looking at him. Then Octavian noticed that here and there in the grass were pieces of chocolate and their shiny wrappers. It looked like a greedy child’s paradise.

The children had thrown his presents back at him.

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