They didn't call 'em the Brothers Grimm for nothing...


Once upon a time a Hen went with a rooster to a nut hill. They agreed that whoever found a kernel would share it with the other. Soon the hen found a very big nut, but didn't say anything because she wanted to eat the kernel all by herself. However, the kernel was so large that she couldn't swallow it, and it got stuck in her throat. Fearing that she may choke to death, she yelled "Rooster, run as fast as you can and fetch me water or I'll choke to death!"

The rooster ran to the well and said "Well, I need some water. The hen's lying on the nut hill, about to choke to death."

"First run to the bride," said the well, "and get some red silk for me."

The rooster ran to the bride and said "Bride, I need some red silk from you, for the well, who can give me water to take to hen who's lying on the nut hill about to choke to death."

The bride said, "First run and fetch me my wreath that got caught on a willow branch."

The rooster ran to the willow, pulled the wreath off the branch, and brought it to the bride, who gave him some red silk. The rooster took it to the well, who gave him water in trade.

The rooster rushed back to the hen, but by that time, she was dead. The rooster became so sad that he cried out, and all the animals came and mourned for her. Six mice built a wagon to take the hen to her resting place, and harnessed themselves to it. The rooster drove the wagon. Along the way they saw the fox, who asked "Where are you going, rooster?"

"To bury the hen."

"May I ride with you?"

"Yes, but you're heavy, so you'll have to get in the back. If you sat in the front, my horses would collapse and the wagon would crash."

The fox sat in the back. Then the wolf, the bear, the stag, and all of the forest animals also took a seat in the back. They continued their journey until they reached a brook.

"How shall we get across?" asked the rooster.

A straw was lying near the brook, and said "I'll lie across, then you can drive over me." But as soon as the mice put their weight on the bridge, the straw fell into the water, followed by the mice, who drowned. The situation was just as bad as before, but a hot piece of coal came along and said "I'm large enough. Just drive over me." The coal laid itself on the water, but it skimmed the surface, started hissing, extinguished, and died.

A stone happened to see, and took pity on the rooster. It lay across the water and the rooster drove the wagon over the stone to the other side. When the rooster reached land with the dead hen, he wanted to help the others in the back of the wagon, but there were too many of them, and they slipped backwards into the water and drowned. So the rooster was alone with the dead hen, and dug a grave for her. He laid her in it and made a mound. Afterwards, he sat on the mound and grieved until he died. Then everyone was dead.


- the Brothers Grimm

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