The Little Boy Who Healed Harms

There was once a little boy who could change into a fish of the sea at whim. He was delighted with both his forms, but he especially loved swimming along the ocean shore, exploring and playing, and do absolutely no one any harm.

    One day the little boy in his fish form found himself whisked far out to sea. Lost and afraid that he would never get to be a little boy again, he asked the ocean gods to return him to shore.

    But the ocean gods said, 'What have you done for us that we should do you such a favor?'

    The little boy thought about this.

    'Well, I have never done the ocean any harm. Any harm at all. Indeed, I haven't done anyone any harm,' he said. Surely, he thought, this must mean something.

    'That is, in our opinion, the least sort of kindness,' the ocean gods said sternly. 'It is a simple thing to do no harm. It is a far harder thing to heal harm. We shall return you just this once. But be warned: if you ever return this way, see that you have healed some harm so that we can say that you have done something where we might owe you a favor.'

    The little boy found himself a moment later in his boy form sitting on the sand. He watched the waves go in and out and thought about healing harm.

    Suddenly the boy stood up, and looked about him. There were an awful lot of things around him that shouldn't be there. Things that people in their worst kind of people form cast about them that caused a lot of harm. He began to haul up all the things that didn't belong around the ocean. At first he did it because he wanted to be safe. But then he did it because it felt right in his soul.

    And the ocean gods, who saw all the harms the little boy was healing, made sure that he was never swept far out to sea again. 

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