The jelly fish and the monkey
"But how am I to get the monkey here? You know monkeys don't swim?" said the reluctant jelly fish.
"You must carry him on your back. What is the use of your shell if you can't do that!" said the chief steward.
"Won't he be very heavy?" queried kurage again.
"You mustn't mind that, for you are working for the Dragon King," replied the chief steward.
"I will do my best then," said the jelly fish, and he swam away from the Palace and started off towards the Monkey Island. Swimming swiftly he reached his destination in a few hours, and landed by a convenient wave upon the shore. On looking round he saw not far away a big pine-tree with drooping branches and on one of those branches was just what he was looking for—a live monkey.
"I'm in luck!" thought the jelly fish. "Now I must flatter the creature and try to entice him to come back with me to the Palace, and my part will be done!"
So the jelly fish slowly walked towards the pine-tree. In those ancient days the jelly fish had four legs and a hard shell like a tortoise. When he got to the pine-tree he raised his voice and said:
"How do you do, Mr. Monkey? Isn't it a lovely day?"
"A very fine day," answered the monkey from the tree. "I have never seen you in this part of the world before. Where have you come from and what is your name?"
"My name is kurage or jelly fish. I am one of the servants of the Dragon King. I have heard so much of your beautiful island that I have come on purpose to see it," answered the jelly fish.
"I am very glad to see you," said the monkey.
"By the bye," said the jelly fish, "have you ever seen the Palace of the Dragon King of the Sea where I live?"
"I have often heard of it, but I have never seen it!" answered the monkey.
"Then you ought most surely to come. It is a great pity for you to go through life without seeing it. The beauty of the Palace is beyond all description—it is certainly to my mind the most lovely place in the world," said the jelly fish.
"Is it so beautiful as all that?