Many years ago, when a person who owed money could be thrown into a jail, a merchant in London had the misfortune to owe a huge sum to a money-lender. The money-lender, who was old and ugly fancied the merchant's beautiful teenage daughter. He proposed a bargain. He said, he would cancel the merchant's debt, if he could have the girl instead.
Both the merchant and his daughter were horrified at the proposal. So, the cunning money-lender proposed that they let providence decide the matter. He told them that he would put a black pebble and a white pebble into an empty money-bag and then the girl would have to pick out one of the pebbles. If she chose the black pebble she would become his wife and her father's debt would be canceled. If she chose the white pebble she would stay with her father and the debt would be canceled. But, if she refused to pick out a pebble, her father would be thrown into jail and she would starve.
Reluctantly, the merchant agreed. They were standing on a pebble-strewn path in the merchant's garden as they talked and the money-lender stopped down to pick the two pebbles. As he picked up the pebbles, the girl, sharp-eyed with fright, noticed that he picked up two black pebbles and put them into the money bag. He, then, asked the girl to pick out the pebble that was to decide the fate and that of her father.
What would you have done if you had been the unfortunate girl?.