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(c) 2002 by Rosemary Lake, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, in Once Upon a Time When the Princess Rescued the Prince (13 Fairy Tales) available in paperback and ebook from http://www.rosemarylake.com

Free sample excerpt from

Panallusia's Little Red Riding Hood

    Once upon a time in the world of Panallusia there was a little girl who was loved by everyone in her village, and most of all by her Grandmother, who would give her anything she asked for. One day the little girl wanted a hood, so her Grandmother sewed her a pretty little hood of red velvet; which suited the girl so well that everybody immediately began calling her Little Red Riding Hood.

    Not so long afterwards, Little Red Riding Hood's mother made some cakes, and said, “Red Riding Hood, I heard that your Grandmother is ill. Take her sewing basket, which she left here, and carry her these cakes and a little bottle of dandelion wine, to thank her for your new hood.” So Little Red Riding Hood put the cakes into the sewing basket and set out at once for her Grandmother's cottage, which was lay across the woods and beyond the mill.

    As Red Riding Hood was walking through the wood, she met a hungry Wolf, who had a great mind to eat the little girl up. But he dared not do anything just there, because some wood-gatherers were nearby. So the Wolf asked her where she was going.

    “I am going to see my Grandmother, and carrying her some cakes and a little bottle of dandelion wine, for she is ill,” said Little Red Riding Hood.

    “Does your Grandmother live far away?”

    “Oh, yes, her house is far beyond the mill, under three big oak trees.”

    “And which way will you take?”

    “I don't know. Whichever path looks prettiest today.”

    The Wolf thought to himself, If I attack her on a muddy path, the wood-gatherers will find my tracks and hunt me down. So he said: “Promise me you will stay on the cobblestone road.”

“Well, I don't know….”

    But the Wolf followed closely, saying things like “The woods are full of dangerous animals, I'm just trying to help you,” till finally, just to get rid of him, she had to promise.

    “Goodbye, then,” said the Wolf, and he bounded ahead and hid by a deserted bend in the cobblestone road, ready to eat the little girl as soon as she arrived there.

    For a while Little Red Riding Hood kept her promise and walked along the cobblestone road. But then a beautiful butterfly came by and said to her: “Little Red Riding Hood, why aren't you looking at the flowers? Why aren't you listening to the birds? All of us forest people are happy, but you act like you were walking to jail.”

    “I promised the Wolf,” Red Riding Hood said, and told the butterfly the whole story.

    The butterfly said, “Promises to weird people don't count.”