Once on a time there were three little pigs. All summer long they roamed through the woods and over the plains, playing games and having fun. They were happy, easily made friends, and were always given a hearty welcome. But as summer drew to a close, they saw all others were drifting back to their usual jobs, preparing for winter.
Autumn came and it began to rain. The three little pigs started to feel they needed a real home. Much of the fun was over now, and they must set to work, they too, and get a roof over their heads. They talked about what to do, but each decided for himself. The laziest little pig said he'd build a straw hut.
"It will only take a day," he said.
The others disagreed. "It's too fragile," they said disapprovingly, but he refused to listen.
Not quite so careless, the second little pig went in search of planks of seasoned wood. "Clunk! Clunk! Clunk!" It took him two days to nail them together.
But the third little pig did not like the wooden house. "That's not the way to build a house!" he said. "It takes time, patience and hard work to build a house that is strong enough to stand up to wind, rain, and snow, and most of all, protect us from the wolf roaming in the forest out there, ready to transgress against our welfare."
The days went by, and the wisest little pig's house took shape, brick by brick. From time to time his brothers visited him, saying with a chuckle:
"Why are you working so hard on yourself? Won't you come and play?"
But the bricklaying pig just said, "No, I shall finish my house first. It must be solid and sturdy. And then I'll come and play!" he said.
It was the wisest little pig that found the tracks of a big wolf in the neighbourhood. The little pigs rushed home in alarm. Along came the wolf, scowling fiercely at the laziest pig's straw hut.
"Come out and do as I say!" ordered the wolf, his mouth watering. I want to speak to you all!"
"I'd rather stay where I am!" replied the little pig in a tiny voice.
"Then I'll make you come out!" growled the wolf angrily, and puffing out his chest, he took a very deep breath. Then he blew with all his might, right onto the house. All the straw the little pig had heaped against some thin poles, fell down in the great blast.
Excited by his own success, the wolf did not notice that the little pig had slithered out from underneath the heap of straw, and was dashing towards his brother's wooden house. When he realised that the little pig was escaping, the wolf grew wild with rage.
"Come back!" he roared, trying to catch the pig as he ran into the wooden house.
The other little pig greeted his brother, shaking like a leaf.
"I hope this house won't fall down! Let's lean against the door so he cannot break in!"
Outside, the wolf could hear the little pigs' words. Starving as he was, at the idea of a two-course meal, he rained blows on the door.
"Open up! Open up! I want to speak to you!"
Inside, the two brothers wept in fear and did their best to hold the door fast against the blows. Then the furious wolf braced himself to a new effort: he drew in a really giant breath, and went . . . WHOOOOO!
The wooden house collapsed like a pack of cards. Luckily, the wisest little pig had been watching the scene from the window of his own brick house, and he quickly opened the door to his fleeing brothers and closed it firmly behind them. And not a moment too soon, for the wolf was already hammering furiously on the door.
This time, the wolf had grave doubts. This house looked much more solid than the others. He blew once, he blew again and then for a third time. But all was in vain. For the house did not budge an inch. The three little pigs watched him and their fear began to fade.
Quite exhausted by his efforts, the wolf decided to try one of his tricks. He scrambled up a nearby ladder, on to the roof to have a look at the chimney. However, the wisest little pig had seen what happened, and he quickly said:
"Quick now! Light the fire!"
With his legs thrust down the chimney, the wolf was not sure if he should slide down the black hole. It wouldn't be easy to get in, but the sound of the little pigs' voices below only made him feel hungrier.
"I am dying of hunger! I am going to try and get down."
And so he let himself drop. But landing was too hot! The wolf landed in the fire, stunned by his fall. The flames licked his hairy coat and his tail became a flaring torch.
"Never again! Never again will I go down a chimney!" he squealed, as he tried to put out the flames in his tail. Then he ran away as fast as he could. The three happy little pigs, dancing round and round the yard, began to sing:
"Tra-la-la! Tra-la-la! The wicked wolf will never come back!"
From that terrible day on, the wisest little pig's brothers set to work with a will. In less than no time, up went the two new brick houses. The wolf did return once to roam in the neighbourhood, but when he caught sight of three chimneys, he remembered the terrible pain of his burnt tail, and left for good.
Now safe and happy, the wisest little pig called to his brothers:
"No more work! Come on, let's go and play!"
❋ Who lives by killing many others, cannot be all good or wise in the first place.