Chapter 11

Mahabharata English - SAUPTIKA PARVA

Vaishampayana said, “Beholding his sons, grandsons, and friends all slainin battle, the king’s soul became overwhelmed with great grief, OJanamejaya! Recollecting those sons and grandsons and brothers andallies, a deep sorrow took possession of the illustrious monarch.Senseless and trembling, his eyes were bathed in tears. His friends then,themselves filled with anxiety, began to comfort him.

At that time, Nakula, skilled in executing errands, arrived there on hiscar of solar effulgence, accompanied by the princess Krishna in greataffliction. She had been residing at Upaplavya. Having received thatheartrending intelligence about the slaughter of all her sons, she becameexceedingly agitated. Trembling like a plantain tree shaken by the wind,the princess Krishna, arrived at the presence of Yudhishthira, fell down,afflicted by grief. Her face, adorned with eyes resembling a couple offull-blown lotuses, seemed to be darkened by grief like the Sun himselfwhen enveloped in darkness.

Beholding her prostrate on the earth, the wrathful Vrikodara, of prowessincapable of being baffled, advancing hastily, raised her up and claspedher with his arms. The beautiful lady, comforted by Bhimasena, began toweep, and addressing the eldest son of Pandu with his brothers, said, “Bygood luck, O monarch, having obtained the whole earth, thou shalt enjoyher after the slaughter of thy brave sons in the observance of kshatriyaduties. By good luck, O son of Pritha, thou art happy at the thought ofhaving obtained the whole earth. By good luck, thy thoughts do not dwellon Subhadra’s son whose tread resembled that of an infuriated elephant.By good luck, thou dost not, like myself while residing at Upaplavya,recollect thy heroic sons slaughtered in the observance of kshatriyaduties. O son of Pritha, hearing of the slaughter of those sleepingheroes by Drona’s son of sinful deeds, grief burns me as if I were in themidst of a fire. If Drona’s son be not made to reap the fruit of thatsinful deed of his, if, putting forth your prowess in battle, thou dostnot take the life of that wretch of sinful deeds, along with the lives ofall his followers, then listen to me, ye Pandavas, I shall sit here inpraya!”

Having said these words, the helpless Krishna, the daughter of Yajnasena,sat by the side of the eldest son of Pandu, king Yudhishthira the just.The royal sage, Yudhishthira, of righteous soul, seeing his dear queensit in praya, addressed her, saying, “O auspicious lady, O thou that artconversant with morality, all thy sons and brothers have righteously metwith a noble death. It behoveth thee not to grieve for them. As regardsDrona’s son, he hath gone to a distant forest, O beautiful princess! Howshall thou O lady, make thyself sure of his fall in battle?”

Draupadi answered, “I have heard that Drona’s son hath a gem on his head,born with him. I shall see that gem brought to me after the slaughter ofthat wretch in battle, Placing that gem on thy head, O king, I shallendure to live. Even this is my resolve.”

Having said these words unto the royal son of Pandu, the beautifulKrishna approached Bhimasena and said these words of high purpose untohim: “Remembering the duties of a kshatriya, O Bhima, it behoveth thee tocome to my rescue. Slay that man of sinful deeds like Maghavat slayingSamvara. There is no one in this world who is equal to thee in prowess.It is known throughout the world how on an occasion of great calamitythou becamest at the town Varanavata the refuge of all the Parthas. Whenagain we were seen by Hidimba, it was thou that becamest our refuge inthe same way. Like Maghavat rescuing (his spouse) the daughter of Puloma,thou didst rescue my afflicted self, in Virata’s city, from a greatcalamity. Like those great feats, O Partha, that thou didst achieve informer days, slay now, O slayer of foes, the son of Drona and be thouhappy!”

Hearing these and other piteous lamentations of the princess, Kunti’sson, Bhimasena, of great might, could not endure them. He mounted uponhis great car adorned with gold and took his beautiful bow with arrowplaced on the string. Making Nakula his charioteer, and resolved uponslaying the son of Drona, he began to stretch his bow and caused hissteeds to be urged without delay. Those steeds, fleet as the wind, thusurged, O tiger among men, proceeded with great speed. Possessed of greatvalour and unfading energy, Bhima set out from the Pandava camp andproceeded with great celerity along the track of Ashvatthama’s vehicle.”

Chapter 10
Chapter 12
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