21) Drupada, with great ego, said thus to him who had come there recalling his earlier vow that he would share half his kingdom (with Drona).
22) “How can a King befriend a destitute? O Brahmin! Go wherever else you want” – Drupada said thus, driven by divine will. Due to the same divine intent, the normally restrained Dronacharya became angry.
23) “Father’s student is also the student of the son. The property of such a student is also the son’s. Having thought so I gave up my vow of not accepting alms from anyone and came to him, considering that he is the student of my father”
24) “But this sinner and fool has insulted me with his cruel words. I will break his ego” – having decided thus, he went to the Kauravas to make them his students.
25) “The Kauravas will fulfill what I need, now that I have given up my vow of not accepting alms completely” – having considered thus he saw the sons of Dhritharashtra playing with the sons of Pandu on the outskirts of the city.
26) At that time, the ball with which they were playing fell into a well, along with the official seal of Yudhisthira. Even when all of the princes got together, they couldn’t lift it up. Bhima, the son of Vayu, then spoke to them.
27) Bhimasena, depending upon his ability, spoke thus – “I shall jump into this deep well and bring out the ball along with the royal seal. O princes! just watch!”
28) At that moment, Drona addressed the princes thus – “Fie on your conduct that is (contingent on) not having any astras. Having been born in the Bharata lineage, you do not have knowledge of divine astras”.
29) When he said thus, the princes realized that he was the grandson of the divine Guru (Brihaspati) and knowing that he had knowledge of astras, requested him to fetch them their ball and the official seal.
30) Using his knowledge of divine astras, he (Drona) threw down blades of grass one after the other and lifted the ball. When the princes asked him to lift the official seal also in the same manner, he said to them “Make arrangements for my food”.
31) Yudhisthira immediate gave him assurances regarding arrangements for wealth and food as much as required. As soon as he assured him thus, Drona lifted the royal seal and gave it to them.
32) All of them asked him together – “Who are you?”. He replied – “Your grandfather will let you know”. All of them immediately ran to their grandfather who told them – “He is Drona”.
33) He (Drona) had never visited their palace. So none of the princes had seen him earlier. Bhishma had undertaken spiritual engagements with him and knew about him having obtained divine weapons from Parashurama.
34) Getting to know that the person was an old man of dark hue, and that he was a great proponent of astras, Bhishma was convinced that he was Drona. He went to him and personally handed over the princes as students.
35) Thereafter Drona addressed the princes and said – “Whoever amongst you gives me the assurance first that he will fulfill my desire – I shall make him the greatest archer in the world”. Arjuna made such a vow.
36) Arjuna had earlier learnt special astras such as the Unmadastra from Sri Krishna. “These are to be used only during exigencies” – recalling these instructions of Sri Krishna he was always keen on obtaining astras that could be used (under much more normal circumstances).
37) “We are going to engage in battle with Bhishma and others in the future. At that time, I won’t engage with my Gurus and other elders. If Arjuna becomes an expert in archery and faces them, I will only earn more punya through it”.
38) It is not appropriate for one to seek a boon knowingly from anyone other than the consort of Indira Sri Hari. Thinking thus Bhima let Arjuna take the vow for his teacher and did not do so himself.
39) When Arjuna undertook that oath duly influenced by Bhima, Drona, the best amongst Brahmins, showed great affection for him thereon and gave him numerous excellent astras.
40) Drona became partial towards him. He used to appreciate him (publicly) very often. He taught him secret subjects and did not teach the others any of the same.