"Then I'll pull down your house till you give me my fifteen qrans," and with that he struck the ground with his pick. As he struck, the ground crumbled away and showed a great hole. He went down into the hole and saw a door which opened of itself, and lo, there were seven jars of Chosroes standing in a row, and all of them were full of jewels and precious stones. And each jar had six golden bricks over its mouth, and on top of all was a golden cock.
"Don't waste time showing me all the treasures of your house!" said the Idiot, "I'll just take my fifteen qrans, if I may, and go home." So he took fifteen qrans for himself, and went home and told his brothers all about it and what he. had done. "Well," said they, "let's go and see where this house is that you saw." They went with him and reconnoitred the place carefully, and stole out quietly one night with animals and loading-sacks and carried off the treasure.
Another day the Idiot took his sheep out as usual. In the afternoon when he was coming home he saw his own shadow behind him, and thought it was a strange man following him. "Are you following me to get my sheep?" he asked. The shadow answered nothing, but continued to follow. "Well, is it sheep you want?" Receiving still no answer, he let the sheep linger behind one by one, and when he reached the door of the house he let go all that remained.
So now he had nothing of the inheritance left at all except the house-door, his mother's spinning-wheel with its stone, and his pick and spade. All these things he loaded up on his back and set out on a journey. He reached the top of a hill and sat down there to wait for night. Below the hill there was a stream of water and a tree.
A traveller happened to come along who had a pair of saddle-bags full of money which he was carrying somewhere. He came up and tied his horse to the tree, put the saddle-bags on the ground, and took out a covered pot of chaimal for his supper. As he was alone in the middle of the desert he was frightened, and to distract his mind he began to mould his chaimal into little figures like men. And to each he gave a name - one he called God and one Satan, one Gabriel and one the Prophet, one Ali, and so on. Then he arranged them in a row, and to get an excuse for eating them he attributed some fault to each in turn, and took it up and ate it.
The Idiot saw all this from where he was sitting up above, and threw down the big stone of his mother's spinning-wheel, crying: "Keep some of that for me!" The traveller heard the voice, but was still wondering where it came from when the Idiot with a whizz let fly his pick, and again called out: "Keep some for me!" Seeing no one, the poor man was greatly frightened but made no reply, so the Idiot hurled down the spade and the spinning-wheel, and lastly the house-door.
The unfortunate traveller was terrified, and jumped up, crying: "Alas and alack, what sort of a place is this desert! How can I escape with my life?" And leaving everything behind, he pulled up tight the heels of his giwas and fled at full speed.
The Idiot thereupon came down from the hill and found that only one of the little figures remained uneaten, the one whom the traveller had called "God." So he exclaimed: "O God, I arrived just in time to save your life! If I hadn't come he would have devoured you too." Then he loaded up the saddle-bags again, untied the horse, mounted, and rode home. When he got back his brothers opened the door for him, and took everything and kept it. So again he was empty-handed and had no ties to any place in particular.
That evening when they went to bed, the two brothers stayed awake under their bed-clothes and murmured to each other: "Now that we've got all this wealth, if some one were to go and kill the King we could become kings." The Idiot heard them, however, and said: "All right, I'll go and kill him for you." "Nonsense, child," said they, "people don't kill kings."
As soon as his brothers were asleep, however, the Idiot got up and found a knife and stole out of the house. He walked and walked, till at length he came to the King's palace. He went into the bedchamber and saw the King asleep on a couch, so he cut off his head and carried it home to his brothers, saying: "See, I have killed the King, and this is his head. Now, wake up, rise, and be kings in his stead."
The brothers were greatly frightened, and hit on a stratagem to conceal their connection with the murder. They killed a he-goat and put its head in a nose-bag, and gave it to the Idiot and said: "Well, as you have killed the King, come, take his head away somewhere and throw it down a well, so that no one will know." The Idiot took the nose-bag and emptied the head out of it down the well outside their door. Meantime the brothers concealed the King's head carefully elsewhere.
Next morning the crier went through all the streets and through the bazar, crying: "Last night some one killed the King. If any one has news of the murder, let him speak." Out ran the Idiot when' he heard this, crying: "I killed the King!" "How did you do it?" asked they. "Oh, just that way," said he, "and, see, I threw the head down this well." - "Come along, then, and get it out for us."
Then they seized the brothers too, as accomplices. In vain they protested: "God is our witness that this fellow's mad; he's only talking his insane nonsense," but no one believed them.
Finally, they lowered the Idiot himself down into the well and said: "Bring out the head." When he got down his hand touched the goat's head, and he felt that it had horns and a goat's beard. From the bottom of the well he called up: "I say, had your King got long horns? And had he a goat's beard?" But they only answered: "Boy, bring up the head for us to see."
When he came up they saw he was holding the head of a he-goat, and they began to laugh. Then the brothers said: "We told you he was mad," and they were all set free.
That night, after they had all lain down, the Idiot overheard his brothers whispering together: "What can we do with this brother of ours? Sooner or later he will disgrace us. The best thing will be to kill him some time when he's asleep, and then we shall be able to live in peace." Hearing this, he waited patiently till both the brothers went to sleep, then he got up quietly and slew them both.
Next morning the townspeople all came out to fly the Royal Bird, for it was their custom to choose for their King the man on whose head it would alight. The Idiot too went out with the crowds to see the fun. As soon as they loosed the bird it came and sat on his head. The people were all amazed, and said: "How could the kingdom pass to a man like that?" Three several times they tried, and each time the bird alighted on the Idiot's head.
So he became King, and by the will of God he gradually grew wise and began to rule.
And now my story has come to an end, but the sparrow never got home.