The Ugly Old Woman and the Little Boy
by Aneel Aranha
There was an old woman who lived in a forest. She had once been very pretty, but over the years she had become ugly and cruel. If anybody approaced the little hut in which she lived, she would run after them, brandishing a wicked looking knife, threatening to cut their hearts out.
Eventually, even the birds and the animals in the forest began staying away from her. The woman grew older and uglier.
One day, a young boy came into the forest and seeing the hut, he approached it. The old woman saw him and came out shrieking. "Go away! I will cut your heart out."
The young boy looked at her curiously, but didn't seem afraid. He came closer.
"Don't you hear me?" the woman snarled. "Take another step and I'll cut your heart out."
The boy moved closer still.
The woman glared at him. "Why aren't you afraid? Don't you believe I will cut out your heart?"
The boy said, "If you need to cut my heart out, you must really be starved for love. So go ahead."
The knife dropped from the old woman's hands. Tears began trickling down the old woman's face and as they fell, the bitterness of the years were washed away and she began to look young and pretty again.
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