Publisher: Penguin Random House India (forthcoming)
Rights: World rights available (excluding Indian subcontinent)
Three sailors were arguing on the port. The sailor from Jerusalem shouted, ‘It was a pomegranate.’ ‘No, an apple,’ said the sailor from Rome. ‘A banana,’ said the sailor from Mecca. The argument carried on for days and nights, irritating the merchants assembled on the docks to trade cloth, and spices for gold. So they dragged the sailors to their king where the sailors revealed they were arguing over the true identity of the forbidden fruit. A pomegranate. An apple. No, a banana. ‘Can’t you see,’ the Arab said, ‘This lush green land where we stand had to be Eden, the land from whence Adam came, cast out into our deserts. Apple was surely the forbidden fruits.’
‘What are you talking about? Eden? Adam? Forbidden Fruit?’ said the king. ‘Never heard of these things before.’
The sailors looked shocked. ‘Have you not heard of Abraham and his one true God?’ The king looked blank. ‘Then let us tell you his tale and of the prophets and patriarchs who followed him.’
And so the sailors from Jerusalem, Rome and Mecca narrated a tale to Samudra-pati, lord of the sea. This narration was declared a Testament.