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Main > Czechoslovak folktale > Fairy tale "Rattle-Rattle-Rattle and Chink-Chink-Chink: The Story of Long Beard, the Dwarf, and the Two Sisters"

Rattle-Rattle-Rattle and Chink-Chink-Chink: The Story of Long Beard, the Dwarf, and the Two Sisters

“Lenka,” she said, “has no yarn at all. She did nothing but play and waste her time.”

“You see,” said the woman to her husband. “This is what I’m always telling you but you never believe me. That Lenka of yours is a lazy, good-for-nothing girl who expects me and my poor daughter to do all the work. I’m not going to stand her in the house any longer. Tomorrow morning out she goes to make her own way in the world. Then perhaps she’ll understand what a good home she’s had with me!”

The poor man tried to defend Lenka but his wife would hear nothing. Lenka must go and that was all there was to it.

Early the next morning while it was still dark the woman started Lenka off. She gave her a sack that she said was full of good meal and smoked meat and bread. But instead of meal she put in ashes, instead of smoked meat straw, and instead of bread stones.

“Here is meal and smoked meat and bread for your journey,” she said. “You will be a long time finding any one who will be as good to you as I have been! Now be off with you and never let me see you again! Let your father put you out in service if he can!”

The poor man put his ax on his shoulder and started off with Lenka. He had no place to take her and he hardly knew what to do. He led her off into the mountains, where he built her a little two-room hut. He was ashamed to tell her that he was going to leave her alone, so he said to her:

“You stay here, my dear child, while I go farther into the forest and cut you some firewood.”

But instead of cutting her firewood, he hung his mallet on a beech tree and whenever the wind blew, the mallet made a knocking sound. All afternoon poor little Lenka hearing the knock-knock of the mallet thought to herself: “There is my dear father chopping wood for me!”

When evening came and he hadn’t returned, Lenka went out to find him, but all she could find was the mallet going knock-knock on the tree. Then the poor girl realized that her father had deceived her but she forgave him, for she knew that it was her stepmother’s fault.

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