No More Jungle Law (story 2): The Mouse

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Story File
9

Values

How to avoid bullying

Main Lesson

Victims of bullying can change their situation by surrounding themselves with friends and adopting a brave attitude.

Setting

A jungle

Characters

Several lions, a tiger and a mouse

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No More Jungle Law (story 2): The Mouse

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El ratón

Little Mouse didn’t know why, but they always picked on him. He hardly had any friends and, because he felt small and unimportant, he preferred to spend his time alone so as to not upset anybody or let them down. But it didn’t matter what he did. Every time a new king of the jungle arrived, he was the target of all the bullying. Shouting, running, biting and insulting them never had any effect because the more he did it, the more his bullies enjoyed themselves. Although he had once thought about asking the elephants for help, he was scared about what might happen.

One day, whilst an enormous lion was having fun at his expense, grabbing him by the tail and spinning him around like a fan, he slipped from his grip and flew through the air. Little Mouse bounced from tree to tree, falling down the mountain, until he landed on a branch, just a couple of metres above two more lions! Little Mouse froze, clinging to the branch with his tail and holding on using all his strength so as not to be seen because he recognised one of the lions. He was the old king of the jungle, who had traded his crown for lots of wounds and scars after losing a fight with the enormous lion.

What the poor mouse heard while hanging on the branch almost made him lose his grip.
“Look,” said the old king, “I became king by striking fear into all. Just as my father taught me, I looked for a little, frightened, lonely animal, someone without any friends, who wouldn’t dare to look for help, and I would punish them to show my power and cruelty. I was lucky, because in this jungle, there is a perfect little mouse for that. He cries a lot and gets very angry, so it’s a lot of fun to wind him up…”

Little Mouse cried silently, so much so that the lions thought that it had begun to rain and left. But then, Little Mouse was relieved that the cruel lion had received the same punishment as him, and now he knew that he wasn’t being picked on due to bad luck or coincidence. It was clear that he needed to make new friends and to learn to control his fear.

As he wasn't good at either of those things, he watched what the other animals did. He learned that nobody made friends by being alone and feeling sorry for themselves, like Little Mouse did. He learned that the other animals made friends by being happy, looking after others and helping them with their problems. He managed to look happier by practising for hours in front of a mirror and he worked out how to help others after finding out that, although he wasn't very fast or strong, his size and finely tuned sense of hearing were very useful skills to lots of other animals.

So, with a little bit of effort and patience, he finally made his first friend: a friendly monkey who he had helped to retrieve some bananas. The monkey, who had many good friends, helped the mouse meet lots of other animals and helped him to feel much happier in the jungle.

Unfortunately for Little Mouse, it didn't take long for a new king to arrive who wanted to scare others at his expense. Little Mouse had trained with the monkey to control his fear and his cries, but he still felt like he was going to faint when the tiger's claws grazed his little ears. He managed to stop himself from shouting and crying, and he remained calm when the tiger insulted him and pushed him. The tiger got angry because he wasn't having fun and he wondered why he had been told that this mouse was the perfect animal to use to make the other animals fear him… he didn't even look scared! Little Mouse’s friends turned up and they grew increasingly angry as the tiger’s threats and taunting got worse.

Then, the unimaginable happened: noticing the lack of support the tiger had, a lion who had just arrived in the jungle thought that he could easily gain the support of the other animals, so he intervened and asked the tiger to leave Little Mouse alone. To everyone’s surprise, the tiger listened to him. He had already seen that the little, brave, happy mouse was of no use to him to scare everyone, among other things. And that was the last time that anyone bullied Little Mouse. He celebrated by throwing a big party with lots of his friends, including the lion who had saved him. Little Mouse was very grateful, and the lion ended up becoming a great friend to him.

From that moment onwards, every time Little Mouse saw another little animal being bullied, he made friends with them and told them his story to encourage them to be brave and happy and always surround themselves with good friends.

Translated by Lauren Campbell and Mark Barrett Manchester Metropolitan University


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