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Buried Moon

I heard the people on Earth whispering that Things that Dwell in Darkness go about doing harm on the three days when I do not shine. It troubled me. So instead of taking my natural rest, I decided to come down to Earth and see for myself. I wrapped my shining hair in...

Matsu the Nurse

My named is Matsu, which, in the speech of my country, means the Pine Tree. And, as the pine tree, I am strong and evergreen; unchanging and enduring. I served in the house of Idé, and my charge was Fugiwaka, the son of the samurai and his wife. His father Idé had...

Old Man Ivansko’s Return from the Underworld

I still have an ache in my shoulder. "Why?" My grandchildren ask me. "Well, it happened when I released your grandmother from the underworld many years ago. She was trapped down there in a golden castle. I freed her easily enough, but I was left down underground, and...

Old Woman Who Was Saved by a Gazelle

The wonderful gazelle killed a seven-headed snake and freed the slaves imprisoned in this house. Even my master the sultan owes his riches to the gazelle. Because of the gazelle, he married the sultan's daughter. But when he became a rich sultan, he forgot the...

Fairy of the Forest

"Fairy of the Forest!" I hear him call my name. I appear at the doorway of the cottage, under my veil. "What is the matter?" I inquire softly. I know the man. He helped my fairy godmother to draw water from the well. The old woman told him to call my name if ever he...

Swallow Freezing to Death

Winter has come and I've stayed too long. I'm freezing to death in the cornfield, but I can't leave the tiny maiden. I'm pleading with her. "Don't stay underground with the mice and the moles. Fly with me to the flowers and the sun. That's where you belong. Come on,...

Lion’s Lover

The Lion asked me to do something impossible—and by that, I do not mean spinning a cloak for a giant out of the hair of a princess. I did that task, and others that I really suffered to accomplish. But how can I possibly do this task? The Lion has asked me to kill...

Wounded Lion

In my human form I am not as vulnerable as I am in my animal form. When I go out in the morning as a lion, I get wounded. The attacks have become more serious, and now this wound is too deep to be healed. I must not forget that my injuries have been tended before, and...

Powerful Troll

If you ask me for something I don't have, I don't have to go out and get it. I can get it from my own self. If you want broth for soup, I'll cut you some pieces of my head. If you want a light for the candle, I'll set my two fingers on fire. I don't have to buy fish,...

North Wind

When the young girl approached my dwelling, riding on the South Wind, they felt my cold gusts long before they aririved. “What do you want?” I roared from afar, freezing them with my blasts. The South Wind said: “It is I, and this is she who is meant to be with the...

Udea

I approached the terrifying man-eater who crouched before the fire. "Peace be with you, grandfather," I said, and then I asked him for a burning coal. I had to ask. I had no choice. My own fire had gone out. "Do you want a big lump or a little lump?" he asked. "Why,...

Shading Tree

Oh what a thing I have seen tonight! The Captain of the Guard took the Princess Miranda out into the forest. He was ordered by the king to kill her. Imagine! His youngest and sweetest daughter. He wanted his captain to bring back her heart and her tongue as proof that...

Spinning Nun

When my mother died, she gave me an apple that would enable a woman to have a child. I kept it for a long time. Then, when the aging queen realized that she might never have an heir, I gave her the apple. After, I returned to the convent where I live. It is located...

Apple Queen

I became pregnant, not by my husband, but by an apple that an old woman gave me. After eating it, I threw the rind out the window. It was eaten by a horse who gave birth to a foal. My son and his speaking horse have grown up together, and who knows? Together they...

Crow Princess

I spend my nights in a ruined castle, where I live alone in the only habitable room. Terrible things happen at night, but I have promised not to scream or give any indication that I am terrified. Strange beings come down the passage and into the room. They set a huge...