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Main > Chinese folktales > Fairy tale "The Ape Sun Wu Kung"

The Ape Sun Wu Kung

Now it happened that the Great Saint, who had turned himself into a peach-worm, had just been taking his noon-day nap on this bough. When he was so rudely awakened, he appeared in his true form, seized his rod and was about to strike the fairies.

But the fairies said: “We have been sent here by the Queen-Mother. Do not be angry, Great Saint!”

Said the Great Saint: “And who are all those whom the Queen-Mother has invited?”

They answered: “All the gods and saints in the Heavens, on the earth and under the earth.”

“Has she also invited me?” said the Saint.

“Not that we know of,” said the fairies.

Then the Saint grew angry, murmured a magic incantation and said: “Stay! Stay! Stay!”

With that the seven fairies were banned to the spot. The Saint then took a cloud and sailed away on it to the palace of the Queen-Mother.

On the way he met the Bare-Foot God and asked him: “Where are you going?”

“To the peach banquet,” was the answer.

Then the Saint lied to him, saying: “I have been commanded by the Lord of the Heavens to tell all the gods and saints that they are first to come to the Hall of Purity, in order to practise the rites, and then go together to the Queen-Mother.”

Then the Great Saint changed himself into the semblance of the Bare-Foot God and sailed to the palace of the Queen-Mother. There he let his cloud sink down and entered quite unconcerned. The meal was ready, yet none of the gods had as yet appeared. Suddenly the Great Saint caught the aroma of wine, and saw well-nigh a hundred barrels of the precious nectar standing in a room to one side. His mouth watered. He tore a few hairs out and turned them into sleep-worms. These worms crept into the nostrils of the cup-bearers so that they all fell asleep. Thereupon he enjoyed the delicious viands to the full, opened the barrels and drank until he was nearly stupefied. Then he said to himself: “This whole affair is beginning to make me feel creepy. I had better go home first of all and sleep a bit.” And he stumbled out of the garden with uncertain steps.

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