"Why didn't you return the necklace?" Panditji asked her.
"How was I to know this misfortune will strike us today itself! Oh God!"
Panditji: "What is the use of wailing now over the theft? wail over your stupid deed. I have always cautioned you that fortunes change rapidly; you never know what will happen the next moment. I hope you have well understood the meaning of my words now! Has the thief stolen anything else?"
The neighbours came back with lanterns and checked every corner of the house. They climbed over to the roof top, peeked into the closet, and searched the front of the house and the backyard. But the thief was nowhere to be found.
"Seems like the work of a thief who knew what he was looking for," a neighbour expressed his view.
"Thieves never strike without first obtaining information about the house. Has anything else been taken away?" another neighbour said.
Maya: "No, nothing else is missing. The utensils are all there; the chests have not been opened. The scoundrel could have taken away my things, but he made away with the neighbour's necklace. Oh God! How will I show her my face now!"
"I suppose now you must be enjoying the pleasures of owning jewellery," Panditji reproached her. Time and again I explained the futility of possessing ornaments but you wouldn't listen. We lost a 600 rupees worth necklace just like that! Only God can help me overcome this disgrace with equanimity."
Maya: "Had the scoundrels taken away every straw from my house I would not have felt so miserable. The poor woman had the necklace made only a few days ago."
Panditji: "Are you sure the necklace was made from 20 tolas of gold?"
Maya: "That is what she said."
Panditji: "It will take a lot of work to buy that much gold!"
Maya" "I will tell her there was a burglary in the house. She can't blame me for that, can she? We can't go about stealing in order to restore the necklace."
Panditji: "The necklace has been stolen from our house; we will have to get her a new one. How does it matter to her whether thieves have stolen it or it is you who have kept the necklace for yourself?"
Maya: "From where will we get so much money to buy her a new necklace?"
Panditji: "We will have to get the money somehow, else we will remain disgraced for life. But, you have committed a very grave mistake."
Maya: "I don't know what had come over me, else what pleasure could I have got from wearing the necklace for a short while. I am an unfortunate woman."
Panditji: "What is the use of regretting and cursing yourself now? Calm down, tell the neighbour not to feel anxious; we will not rest until we have returned her necklace."