Once there was a brother and a sister. Their mother had died, and they lived with their father and their stepmother. Their stepmother was always mean to them, and their father was always busy with work.
Once there lived a king. He was famous because he was very clever. He knew everything that happened in his country. Nobody knew how he knew everything. It was like the secrets came to him through the air.
Once there was a poor man with a son. The man could not look after his son anymore, so the son said to him, ‘Dear father. Things are bad here, and you have to work hard to look after me. Let me leave, and I will look after myself.’
Once there was a father with two sons. The older son, Hugh, was smart and sensible, and could do everything, but the younger son, Anders, was stupid and understood nothing. Whenever the father needed help, it was always the older son who helped him.
Once there was an old goat. She had seven little goats. She loved them a lot. One day the mother goat went into the woods to find food for them. Before she left, she spoke to them all.
‘Dear children,’ she said. ‘I am going out into the wood. I will be gone for a while. There is a big bad wolf who lives near here. Be careful. If he comes inside the house, he will eat all of you. He often changes how he looks, so remember this: he has a deep voice and big black feet.’
Once there was a cat and a mouse. Usually, cats eat mice, and mice run away from cats, but this cat and this mouse liked each other very much. They liked each other so much that they lived together. They made a nice little house in the city. Everyone called them the “Strange Friends”.
Far away from our world, there were the Blue Castle and the Red Castle. In the Blue Castle, everything was soft and blue, and Izod was the softest fairy of all. Izod loved her land, and the land loved her. It was a happy place, but at times it was very sad. When one of the High Fairies died, all the people cried for days. Izod cried more than everyone else. She had a big heart, and beautiful wings. They called them her “wings of water”.