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How did Darzee's wife trick Nagaina into following her in Rudyard Kipling's...

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bodha | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 11, 2013 at 5:41 PM via web

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How did Darzee's wife trick Nagaina into following her in Rudyard Kipling's "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi"?

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Lori Steinbach | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted August 11, 2013 at 9:39 PM (Answer #1)

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"Rikki-Tikki-Tavi" is a children's story which was published as part of the Jungle Book stories. Rikki-Tikki is a mongoose who has become a loyal friend, pet, and guardian of a little boy. When the boy's house is attacked by two cobras, Nag and Nagaina, the mongoose does what he is best equipped to do--he kills Nag and creates an enemy of Nag's wife Nagaina.

The next morning, Rikki-tikki determines to destroy Nagaina and her nest of eggs. Darzee tells the mongoose where the eggs are hidden; he does not understand the need to destroy the eggs but his wife does. She knows that "cobra’s eggs meant young cobras later on," 

so she flew off from the nest, and left Darzee to keep the babies warm, and continue his song about the death of Nag.... She fluttered in front of Nagaina by the rubbish heap, and cried out,  "Oh, my wing is broken! The boy in the house threw a stone at me and broke it.'' Then she fluttered more desperately than ever.

While Nagaina is distracted by this elaborate play-acting by Darzee's wife, Rikki-tikki is able to find the eggs; he smashes two of them and gets a third one in his mouth before he hears cries coming from the veranda and has to go rescue the boy.

Sources:

Lori Steinbach

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