Long ago in a Korean village lived two brothers with their family. The elder brother was lazy and didn’t do anything. However, Chun, the younger brother was very hard working. He would wake up early in the morning and head to the forest to cut woods. He shared his earnings as a woodcutter with his parents as well as his brother and brother’s wife without ever complaining about being the only earning member in the family.
One day, Chun was exhausted from the day’s work and was resting under an oak tree. He found some acorns beneath that tree which he kept in his pocket thinking he would share it with his family. However, fate had something else in store for him. He found himself lost on his way home. It was a cold and dark night, and he was shivering with fear. He walked and walked until he reached an empty house. Chun was tired from all the walking and didn’t waste a single minute in making himself comfortable in the house. It wasn’t long before he heard some voices in the doorway.
Chun leapt inside a closet with a slight opening to enabling him to see the inhabitants of the house. To his astonishment, he saw a group of goblins with a club in their hands gathered around in a circle pounding their clubs on the floor and chanting the phrase “make gold” repetitively. A pile of gold miraculously appeared out of nowhere. Then, the goblins chanted “make silver” while pounding their clubs and a heap of silver appeared.
Suddenly, Chun felt hungry, and his stomach started grumbling. Sacred that the goblins might come to know of his presence inside the room, he inaudibly kept an acorn in his mouth to quiet his hunger. But as he bit the acorn, it broke in his mouth with a thunderous crack. The goblins thought that lightning had struck the building and rushed out leaving everything behind. Chun was so scared that they might return that he didn’t come out of the closet until the dawn.
Seeing nobody around, Chun kept all the treasure in his sack in the morning. As he was walking out, he found a club that lying on the floor that one of the goblins had left behind in a hurry. He kept that too.
Chun returned home and built a massive house for his parents. Whenever there was a need for money, he would let the goblin’s club do its magic, and the riches would appear in front of him. This made Chun’s brother awfully jealous, and he asked Chun about his secret which he did reveal without leaving any detail.
His brother repeated the exact series of events that led Chun to the goblins house. He cut woods, rested under that same oak tree, and picked the acorns from underneath it but in his greed, he did not think about anyone except himself while keeping the acorns in his pocket. Then, he went to the goblins’ house and hid in the closet. The goblins came and started making gold. He bit the acorn, and it broke with a deafening crack. He saw the goblins escaping the house. But as he stepped outside the closet, the goblins caught him and beat him mercilessly thinking that it was him who had stolen their treasure previously too.
He returned home empty-handed and wept before Chun saying “My greed has given me nothing.” He had learned his lesson by paying a painful price for his greed.