I slept in the hollow of an old tree in the wild forest. I was warm because I was covered from head to foot in every living animal’s fur. I never wanted to come out of the safety of those furs. I never wanted to shine again. I would happily live the rest of my days, hidden in obscurity. Nothing had prepared me for the violent appetite that my father developed for me after my mother’s death.
I woke early, and I had just gone back to sleep when I heard the sound of barking dogs. I opened my eyes and I saw their snouts pushing through the opening.
Allerleirauh in Allerleirauh, Grimms. Illustration by von Otto Ubbelohde.