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Graciosa Who Opens a Forbidden Box

I was a pampered princess until my mother died and I came under the control of the wicked duchess who married my father. She was always looking for ways to punish me. I did my best, but I couldn't do anything right. Then she enslaved an old Fairy who gave me...

Youth in Search of Secrets

In my youth I had a great thirst to know things that other people didn't know and didn't care to know. After I had learned to understand the language of birds and other creatures, I had the sudden revelation that many things took place in the dark, invisible to mortal...

Prince Who Meets a Girl Wearing a Wreath

I was riding through the forest one day when I heard strange birds singing. I had never heard such tiny, sweet songs. Who could possibly be making that shower of sound? I came close to the place, tied my horse to a tree, and followed the sound to a girl who was...

Seeker of the Silent Princess

I was the son of a pasha in Turkey, and an only child. I played with a golden ball that I would throw against the walls of the summer house and catch when it dropped. One day, I saw an old woman coming to draw water from the well, and I threw my ball at her pitcher....

Heartless Man’s Wife

I watched the old wizard wave his wand and turn my sisters and their lovers into stone statues. He spared me because I didn't have a partner. He took me into his cottage and made me his wife. He explained that he was terribly lonely in the deep wood. I asked him,...

Yard Dog

You would think that being a snow man, he would have been interested in the frost that flowered on the kitchen window. But no, no, no! The frost only irritated him because he was trying to see through the window to the hot wood stove. I can understand how a yard-dog...

Bluebeard’s Wife

Bluebeard, my new husband, told me that he had to go away for six weeks, and while he was gone, I could do what I pleased and invite my friends to our fine country house. He gave me the keys to two great wardrobes where he kept his finest furniture, along with another...

Cauldron

I am one of three cauldrons hidden in the house of a giant. We contain copper, silver and gold, and our metal boils without a fire beneath. Imagine how much heat we hold. One day a young prince came into my room. He knew he wasn't supposed to enter, but he was too...

Prince Employed by a Giant

I'm the youngest of many sons of the king, and When I grew into manhood, I was determined to go out into the world and try my luck. It took a long time to persuade my father, but I persisted and at last he was forced to let me go. I traveled around for several days...

Ali Baba

I'm cutting wood in the forest when suddenly I hear the sound of an army riding towards me. I scramble up the nearest tree and I see forty men riding fast, sending up a cloud of dust. They stop right under my tree, dismount, and tie their horses. Then their finely...

Naming Father

I was sitting on the front steps with my three daughters one night after the farm work had been done. They were grown up and it was time to be thinking about marriage. Jovially, I asked my eldest if she had decided what her husband's name will be. Names are important,...

Brother Who Gets to the Bottom of It

My two older brothers fell asleep but I did not. I stayed awake through the night, and I saw the hawk that has been breaking through the church window. I shot it in the wing. It fell right here, and under this great stone an abyss has opened up. I wonder what is down...

Surrendering King

I gave him every impossible task I could think of, and he accomplished every one. How did he do it? I'll be damned if I know how he made a flying ship, or how he fetched healing water from the ends of the earth. How did he eat and drink so much? How did he survive a...

Double-Crossed Queen

Our daughter is a shut-in. It's not her fault. We've shut her into a copper castle surrounded by many walls and towers. I don't like the arrangement, but it has been prophesized that she will marry a common soldier, and the king won't have it. A few nights ago, our...