HOW THE STEPMOTHER’S DAUGHTER CAME TO GRIEF

Once upon a time there was a widowed stepmother, which had to daughters. One of them was hers, while the second was her stepdaughter. Her daughter was lazy and spoiled, while her stepdaughter was hardworking and weariless even she didn’t love her. She always gave her too much work. The poor girl went to the well to wash the clothes till her fingers bled. One day she noticed that the bucket of the well was bloody. She tried to wash it and bent over, but the bucket fell down in the water. The girl cried all the time and went to tell her stepmother about what had happened.

- You threw it in the well, you take it! – said the angry stepmother.

The poor girl didn’t know what to do. She went back to the well and the desperation made her jump inside it. She crouched of fear and when she opened her eyes, she got surprised because she found herself in the middle of a wonderful lawn full of grass and colorful flowers. The effulgent sun was shining. The girl walked through the lawn and looked at a bakery full of baked breads.

- Poppet! Poppet! Get us out of the fire because we are getting burnt. – were the breads complaining.

The girl approached, took the wooden oar and took them out one by one. Later she saw an apple tree groaning from the ripe apple fruits full of juice.

- Poppet! Poppet! Get us out of here because we are ready now. – were shouting the apples.

The girl approached the apple and began to shake it so hard that all the apples fell down on the ground like the hail. She shook it till no apple was left in the tree.

Then she picked them up and continued her way. She arrived at a little house, where an old woman with big teeth opened the door. The girl got scared and wanted to run, but the old woman called her:

- Don’t get scared, you nice little girl! Stay here with me and help me with the house works. If you’re hardworking, I will supply you. You’ll dangle my mattress till you push down all the feathers. I am the grandmother Snow and when the feathers come out of the mattress, then the ground will be covered in the snow. The girl calmed down from the good words and decided to stay with her. She tried to do whatever the grandma Snow told her. When she dangled the mattress, the feathers flied around her like snowflakes. The old lady liked the hardworking girl, while the girl felt herself more comfortable there than in the house of her stepmother. But she missed home and one day she went to the grandma Snow and said:

- I feel very good here but I miss my home! Can I leave?

- I am glad that you miss home already, - said the grandma Snow. –you helped me without a complaint and I will take you up to the ground by myself.

She took the little girl and they found themselves in front of a large gate. The gate opened, but when the girl did the first step, a golden rain began to cover her in gold.

- This is the reward for the work you’ve done, - said the grandma Snow.

Then she gave the bucket that had fallen into the well and they said good-bye to each-other. The gate closed again and the little girl found herself on the field nearby her house. Over the gate there was a rooster standing, who began to sing when he saw the girl:

- Crow-crow-crow! Who is that fancy girl coming! It’s our girl covered in gold!

When they saw her covered in gold, the stepmother and her daughter welcomed her so enthusiastically and began to ask her, so the girl told them everything. The stepmother wanted her lazy daughter to get rich too. So she gave her the bucket and sent her to the well. The lazy girl cut her finger, spread the blood on the bucket and threw it in the water. Then she jumped inside the well. The same as her sister, she found herself in the green lawn and walked through the field. She arrived at the bakery and the loaves of bread began to shout at her:

- Poppet! Poppet! Get us out of the fire because we are getting burnt!

- I will mess my hands then! –said the lazy girl and continued the way.

When she passed near the apple tree, the apple fruits called her:

- Poppet! Poppet! Get us out of here because we are ready now!

- No, I won’t because you will fall over me and hurt my head, - she said and went on.

She walked for a while till she arrived at the grandma Snow, but she didn’t scare of the nanny because her sister had said to her that she was a good woman. She began to live with the nanny too. The first day she didn’t show her laziness and did what nanny said, because she was looking forward to getting the reward. The second day she carried out only some of the works, but the third day she didn’t touch a thing. She didn’t take care of the mattress of the grandma Snow, and nanny didn’t like the girl at all.

- Let me take you home, - she said to the girl a few days later.

The lazy girl was so happy and thought: ‘‘finally the golden rain will fall over me!’’ The grandma took her to the gate and said goodbye, but when the girl did the first step, a black soot began to rain over her.

- That’s the reward for your work, - said the grandma Snow.

And the gate closed. When she went near the house, the rooster saw her, went on the top of the roof and began to sing:

- Crow! Crow! Crow! Look who is coming, look at her carefully! Poor she is covered in black soot!

The lazy girl tried to wash it out but it still remained. She lived the rest of her life with a black skin.