From: Guy Hoyle <ghoyle1_at_airmail.net>
Date: Wed, 18 Oct 2000 22:56:00 -0500

Just realized that I left some references to Eurmal in the story; at an earlier point I had specifically identified the Stranger as the trickster, but I decided to make his identity more mysterious. Sorry for the confusion.

Guy Hoyle

On 10/18/00 at 1:05 PM Guy Hoyle wrote:

>First draft. Please send me critiques, suggestions, etc. It's very
>sketchy at the moment.
>Guy Hoyle (ghoyle1_at_airmail.net)
>Little Vinga was the daughter of Orlanth and Ernalda. Because of her
>beautiful red hair, everybody called her Little Vinga Red-Hood. One
>day, when she was too young to take up weapons, and too old to enjoy
>children's games, she caused nothing but trouble for her mother. She
>broke the jar in which her mother kept leafy-dew, and she trod on
>Yinkin's tail whenever the lazy cat lay down for a nap. When Little
>Vinga Red-Hood caused Ernalda to snag a thread while weaving, however,
>Ernalda knew she had to find a task to occupy her daughter's tumultuous
>"Your grandmother has been sick," the wise goddess explained. "I'm too
>busy trying to clean up after your mess, but you can take a basket of
>bread and a pot of butter to her." Little Vinga Red-Hood, glad for any
>reason to leave the confines of her father's stead, kissed her mother,
>grabbed the basket, and set off for her grandmother Asrelia's cottage,
>out in the gloomy woods. The trail she followed was dark and twisted,
>yet Little Vinga Red-Hood knew how to straighten it. When the paths
>became too tangled, Little Vinga Red-Hood ran over the tops of trees as
>if they were hummocks. But eventually, Little Vinga Red-Hood came to a
>dark place, which she could neither avoid nor untangle.
>"What have we here?" said a voice from the dark place. Standing on the
>edge of the dark place was a stranger; his eyes were tiny beads hidden
>in the shadows, but his mouth was full with teeth and then some.
>"Please, kind sir, " Little Vinga Red-Hood said, "I'm taking this basket
>of bread with a pot of butter to my Grandmother's cottage, and I cannot
>go further than this dark place. Can you help me?"
>"Of course," said the stranger, thinking of how delicious Little Vinga
>Red-Hood would be to eat, sliced like bread with a dollop of creamy
>butter. "This path here leads to her cottage." He showed her the dark,
>twisty paths, while he himself took a secret swift path he knew about,
>and thus reached Asrelia's cottage long before her granddaughter did.
>"Who's there?" cried Asrelia, when the Trickster knocked on the door.
>"It's Little Vinga Red-Hood", called Eurmal. "Unloosen the latch and
>come in, granddaughter!", replied the grandmother, for she was too sick
>to leave her bed. Eurmal sprang into the cottage and devoured Asrelia
>in one big gulp.Then he put on her clothes, dressed himself in her cap,
>laid himself in bed and drew the curtains.
>Little Vinga Red-Hood soon reached Asrelia's cottage, where she was
>surprised to see the door standing wide open. "How uneasy I feel", she
>said, "and I've never felt that way when I visited Grandmother before."
>She stepped inside and came to the bed where the stranger lay in her
>grandmother's clothes.
>"Grandmother, what big eyes you have, " said Little Vinga Red-Hood.
>They were small and beady, like the stranger's.
>"All the better to see you with," said the stranger.
>"Grandmother, what a big nose you have!" It sniffed hungrily, but she
>knew that bread was not what it hungered for.
>"All the better to smell you with, my dear!"
>"Grandmother, what big teeth you have!" A long pink tongue ran along the
>rows of uneven teeth, and a thread of saliva threaded down the unshaven
>The stranger in Grandmother's clothes leapt from the bed, but his eyes
>never saw, his nose never smelled, and his teeth never chewed anything
>ever again. For Little Vinga Red-Hood had sliced him open with the sharp
>knife that her mother had put in the basket for slicing the bread. From
>inside the stranger stepped Grandmother Asrelia, who gave Little Vinga
>Red-Hood lots of hugs and kisses.
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