Faheem Ahmad Khan

The now small town of Mastuj in Chitral, once used to be a place of much importance as capital of a small hilly principality. The river which flows by Mastuj, once formed a large lake just below the town. It is said that an enormous dragon lived in the lake. He preyed upon all living things, ranging from fish to animals. With the passage of time, he began to attack humans. Whoever passed nearby, were swallowed alive by him. The huge reptile was invulnerable to weapons. Arrows didn’t reach him from a long distance, while going near it was difficult and risky. People of the area in state of worry, requested the local King to protect them from the hideous creature.

After consulting with his advisers, the King made a proclamation of reward for whoever killed the dragon.

When this proclamation was announced, a brave man volunteered himself for the mighty but risky job. He announced to accept the challenge, and was summoned to the King’s court to meet the King. After showing his willingness to do the risky job of killing the serpent, to His Majesty, he went back to his house. Afterwards he ordered a blacksmith to make a long and sharp sword, with a hilt on both ends.

After few days, he collected the sword f, poisoned its edge. He went to his house, said good bye to his family, and set off on his perilous journey.

Reaching near the lake; he mounted off his horse, took out his sword, held it in both hands, with stretched arms, and moved towards the edge of the lake. When the man-eater dragon noticed noise and moments near his den, he began to move towards the direction of moments and noises. When he took sight of a man from a distance, he began to suck him into his mouth. As soon as he pulled the man towards its mouth, the razor sharp blade of the sword began slicing his jaws apart. Soon he went down to its belly, poison swiftly completed the rest of the job.

Finally, the dragon met his ultimate end. The brave man cut one of the golden locks from the dragon’s mane and galloped his horse towards the royal court. When he reached the King’s palace with the good news; he was given a hero’s welcome, a splendid and lavish feast was arranged in his honour. He brandished the golden lock to the courtiers, and was applauded by everyone. The hero received a large sum and land as reward from the King. The local people showered on him an unfathomable love. His tale of brevity and galore reached far and wide. He still lives in the memories of the local people. The Lake no more exists today but the place is still called Nahangu Chhat (The Dragon’s Lake).

Faheem Ahmad Khan

The Author

Faheem Amad Khan has done his Masters in English Literature and M.Phil in development Studies. He has been writing in a number of journals on development issues. He has got a taste for literature too. Faheem Ahmad Khan is from Mastuj, Chitral and living in Abbottabad.
A Website on the Culture, History and Languages of Chitral.
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