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Zora — the Man of Steel
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It was a peaceful day in the wonderful village of Harlem. Mothers were in the markets. Children were playing hide and seek outside their houses. Gardeners were watering their plants with care. Serenity prevailed everywhere.

Suddenly, the silence was broken by loud bleating sounds of the sheep. The gardeners dropped their tools and went to see what caused the commotion. The children stopped playing and joined their mothers who had also come to find out what was going on. There was a heard of sheep running from the outskirts of the city. “But why were they running?” was the question that had clouded everyone’s mind. They soon found out that the heard was running because of a creature! A very HORRIBLE CREATURE, very horrible indeed!!!!!!! A creature that no man had ever seen. It had legs of a cheetah, hands of an ape, body of a man and face of a wolf! There were blood stains all around its mouth! The citizens watched in horror as the horrible creature charged towards them. Everyone panicked. The people tried to scare the creature by pelting stones at it, throwing lighted sticks of fire at it, shooting arrows at it, but all in vain. All this just infuriated the creature more and more. Everyone’s fear knew no bounds. The mothers tried to protect the children by hiding them behind themselves, since children are the easy targets of beasts. The creature then started
making loud sounds and beating its chest hard. Everyone got so scared that the mothers held their children’s hands and fled. The gardeners ran here and there with panic and fear.

In the same village lived a youth named Zora. He was one of the leading soldiers of the Great King of Harlem, Pozibo. Whenever any danger confronted the city, Zora was always there to protect the city.

This time, as well, he stood like a rock in front of the creature and challenged it to fight. Since the creature had a body of man, he understood what Zora said. Zora and the creature fought with all their might from dawn to dusk. Zora took his sword and ran towards the creature. He jumped up and gave the creature a strong blow. But this creature wasn’t easily defeated. Using its sharp wolf teeth, it tried to chew Zora to his bone. Zora fell to the ground bleeding profusely. Zora started losing his consciousness. Before he knew what was happening, the creature, using its strong ape hands, climbed up a tree and started throwing fruits on him. Zora could not match the strength of the creature. He got exhausted and using every ounce of his left over strength, he ran to Mount Kailash. He told Lord Shiva, the savior of the world, the problem Harlem was facing. Lord Shiva gave him a boon that at noon, he will get a body of steel. Till noon, he would have to keep the creature engaged. He then gave him potion that helped him heal his wounds. He thanked Lord Shiva and returned to Harlem.

The next day the fight continued with greater force. They both fought valiantly. Zora took hold of his faithful sword and swung it towards the creature, but the creature ducked underneath. The creature then took hold of Zora and flung him into the ground. Zora again got up and this time hit the creature on its stomach. The creature growled. Zora did not have enough power to bear the strong blows of the creature till noon. He started becoming weak. The creature took advantage of this situation. It pounced on him and just when the boy thought his end had come, he felt some power running through his veins. It was already noon. He had become a steel man. He felt more confident. The creature had landed on his stomach and the clanking sound emanated from his body. This could be heard far and wide and it sounded as a gong of victory. This took the creature by surprise and in a state of shock it stood like a rock. Seeing this, Zora kicked the creature so hard, that it flew high up to the sky and fell into the sea. Since then, the creature was neither seen again nor heard of. The village of Harlem was saved from a great ordeal. After this incident, Zora was felicitated with many awards and gifts. He was also given the title of “Man Of Steel” His statue is still there in the middle of the city and the stories of his bravery are still highly spoken of in the city.

© 2014 Ananya Prasanna

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