The Brave Boy 勇敢的男孩



「He ain't heavy, he's my brother」(他不重,他是我兄弟)是廣為周知的故事;這個故事裡的兄弟親情,則是:「無論多困難,我一定要你好起來。」

Kenny, Vitor's little brother lay in their little hut, burning with fever and shooting pain in his stomach that was getting worse by the minute.

Vitor was only about 11 years old but was a happy and cheerful lad. He was a child of the jungle and his brother was about six years younger than him. He had other brothers and sisters, who unfortunately had died due to cholera or malaria.

His mother brought some hot water, dipped some towels inside, and placed it on Kenny's stomach to reduce the pain. Vitor could see that she was in great pain and fear of losing another child, but she was trying hard not to show it.

However, the towels were of no use. Vitor's mother said that he ought to be carried to the nearest hospital. Vitor's mother knew that Kenny was critical, and needed medical attention at the earliest.

The people in the village considered that the hospital was the last resort, and those who were sent there, rarely returned alive.

Vitor told his mother that he would go and call his father, who was out logging for food. His mother asked him to stay back, as it would take days to find him.

Vitor's father was a well-known Lumberjack. He had survived two tiger attacks and saved a comrade from a tiger attack. Whenever there was an expedition in the village, people wanted "The Brave" to be with them. His mere presence gave them a tremendous amount of confidence and courage.

Now, healong with the other strongmen from the village were in an expedition. It was unlikely that Vitor would find someone to help him to take Kenny to the hospital.

Vitor told his mother, "There is no one to turn to, I will take Kenny to the hospital." His mother took a piece of garment and made a sling for Vitor, in which he could carry his brother to the hospital.

His mother said with tears, "You may never get there. Go slowly and be brave." She gave him some food and water to have on the way.

Vitor started his journey. He was unsure, whether he would ever reach the hospital, given Kenny's weight, high temperature, that he could feel the heat through the sling.

The hospital was about 50 miles away, and Vitor hoped to take a shortcut through the forest and wade through two rivers. This might reduce the distance by half. He also hoped that he might get a lift along the way in a bullock cart.

He was afraid to cross the forest. It was dark, and the animals of prey would be searching for food. Night fell and there was a full moon that night. He saw bear and tiger tracks and avoided them, and proceeded carefully. He was afraid and started walking fast.

Finally, he nearly reached the end of the forest, and he just couldn't go further. He put a sling and lied down beneath a tree. His muscles shrank back to his natural position and he felt a piercing pain. He thought he would rest for a few minutes and he lay down. Soon he was fast asleep.

Suddenly he woke up with fright. He looked around to see a herd of elephants at the riverside. Although Vitor was petrified, he knew he could not run with Kenny's weight. All he could do was to keep quiet and pray.

Finally, the elephants left and Vitor quickly crossed the river on a weak bridge built from bamboo poles. He reached the other side and saw there were fresh tiger footprints. Yet, he still plodded. He cried in pain, but he did not stop.

Towards midnight, he reached a place that should be the second bridge. He looked for it, but it had been washed away by a flash flood. He could feel the river's sound and the sound of trees churning. He sat down and wondered about how he would cross this river.

After Vitor brought some cold water for thirsty Kenny, he carried him on his back. With the help of bamboo poles as stilts, he began to cross the river. The deluge deafened and bruised him, yet he kept moving on. He kept Kenny on top of his head, above the water. At the very moment reached the other side, Vitor, entirely exhausted, fell down on the grass.

Vitor was wet and it was icy cold. Yet he kept moving on. When he finally saw people, he passed out.

The next thing he knew was that he was in a bullock-cart, and then a truck.

Finally, they reached the hospital. The hospital staff and the people around could not believe that he had carried the little boy for over 50 miles.

He felt shy when they started calling him Vitor The Brave.

The Doctor came and asked for Vitor The Brave and Vitor replied, "My father is not here."

The Doctor smiled and asked him, "Are you the little boy who carried his brother for over 50 miles?"

Vitor replied, "Yes."

The Doctor then said, "Then you are Vitor The Brave. Come in and see your brother. He will live."





























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