The ogre has smelled me hiding in the pot that stands before his castle. He’s telling me to come out. He will do me no harm. How can that be? He’s a man-eating ogre!

I stay silent. Then he says, “Come out, I tell you. Your life is quite safe. If you are an old man, you shall be my father. If you are a boy, you shall be my son. If your years are as many as mine, you shall be my brother. If you are an old woman, you shall be my mother. If you are a young woman, you shall be my daughter. If you are middle-aged, you shall be my wife. So come out, and fear nothing.”

I must say, he’s very well-spoken for an ogre!

The Maiden Hiding in a Pot in The Daughter of Buk Ettemsuch, Grey Fairy Book.

Illustration by H.J. Ford.