Jason and Jeremy were elated that school was going to be dismissed early due to a water shortage. As soon as the bell rang, they grabbed their bags and raced out the school gate. Leaving school early meant more time to play before they had to head home to tackle the day’s homework. They decided to walk along a new route to get home. As they strolled through the bushy path, a glorious sight met their eyes. In the distance was a gigantic mango tree with every branch laden with ripe, yellow fruits. The boys looked at each other and in silent consent raced through the bushes towards the tree.
As they got closer and closer, they began to salivate at the thought of sinking their teeth into the sweet mangoes. The base of the tree was littered with fallen, rotten or half-pecked fruits but looking up through the branches, they could see as many mangoes and leaves.
“Come on! Start climbing,” Jason yelled to Jeremy.
“The lowest branch is too high. You will have to give me a boost,” said Jeremy.
“So how will I get up? There’s no one to boost me up.”
“Then only one of us can climb up,” reasoned Jeremy. “I’ll go up and throw the mangoes down for you.”
Instead of arguing, Jason agreed to the plan and helped Jeremy get to the lowest branch. There were too many mangoes to eat and no time to waste. Jeremy reached for the mango closest to him. It was firm and ripe. Ripping the skin off with his teeth, he greedily bit into the fruit, the yellow juice running down his arm.
“Hey, throw down one for me. You can’t keep all for yourself.” Jason shouted up at him.
“Hold on. I’m trying to find a really nice one for you.”
Jeremy moved from branch to branch, quickly sucking the mangoes as he went. After he had eaten three mangoes, he decided to throw one down for Jason. “Don’t let it hit the ground.” He shouted as he threw one down.
While Jason patiently waited for another one, Jeremy stuffed down two more.
“Come on Jeremy! Throw down some more.”
Jeremy sent down one more just to satisfy him. The mangoes were so delicious that he did not want to share them, even with his best friend. Suddenly he felt a sharp pain on his arm. Before he could figure out what bit him, he felt another sharp sting and then another. He yelled out in pain and quickly scanned the branches around him. Much to his fright, on a branch right above his head was a huge wasps’ nest.
“What’s going on?” yelled Jason as he heard Jeremy scrambling down the tree.
Jeremy jumped from the lowest branch to the ground, falling heavily on his left leg.
“A wasps’ nest in the tree,” he blurted out.
Jason helped his friend up and supported him with one arm as they hustled away from the mango tree.
“I’m sorry I didn’t throw down more mangoes for you,” Jeremy apologized.
“It’s ok. The wasps made sure that you learnt a lesson.”