The Three Little Pigs Retold
By Julia Archer
Once upon a time, there lived a pig called Mrs Gip. She had three children, two boys called Pog and Pug, and a girl called Peg.
Mrs Gip wanted some peace and quiet, so Pog Gip, Pug Gip and Peg Gip decided to go and live in their own houses.
Now, Pog did not have any money to rent or to buy a house. “I will have to build one myself,” he thought. “But I don’t have any money to buy wood or bricks or roofing iron.”
Pog saw a man walking down the road with a big load of sticks.
“Where did you get the sticks?” asked Pog.
“I picked them up in the forest,” the man said.
“Aha,” thought Pog.
“But be careful,” the man said. “There is a wolf in the forest, and he would love to eat a fat young pig.”
“I am not fat,” said Pog. “I am well-covered.”
“Whatever,” said the man, and he walked on.
So Pog went into the forest and picked up long, strong sticks until he had enough to build a house, which he proceeded to do. He made a nice roof with a thick layer of long grass, to keep the rain out.
Pug Gip had been thinking, hard. “What will I do? I don’t have any money to rent, or buy, or build a house. “
He saw a man carrying planks of wood in his donkey cart. “Where are you taking those planks?” asked Pug.
“To the rubbish tip,” the man said.
“Aha,” said Pug Gip. “Please give them to me. I will use them to build a house.”
“Okay,” said the man. “Where do you want them?”
“Just there, at the edge of the forest,” said Pug.
“Okay, if that’s what you want”, said the man. “But be careful. There is a wolf in the forest, and he would love to eat a fat young pig.”
“I’m not fat,” said Pug. “Just a little short for my weight.”
“Whatever,” said the man, and he drove away.
Pug worked hard for two days building his house. The man and his donkey cart came back with some more wood, and an old window, and some iron sheets, just a little bit rusty, for the roof.
Peg Gip had been busy, too. She had walked down the road on her toes, thinking hard. “I have no money to buy a house and no money to rent a house. I need to get a job.”
She saw a man driving a horse cart with a load of bricks. “Where are you taking those?” asked Peg.
“To a fellow building a house,” said the cart driver.
“Aha,” said Peg. “Does he need help?”
“He needs a bricklayer. Can you lay bricks?”
“I’ll quick-smart learn how to.”
“Well, climb up and let’s go. It’s dangerous here. There is a wolf in the forest who would love to eat a fat young pig.”
“I won’t be fat for long,” said Peg. “Not if I’m laying bricks all day.”
They came to where the man had dug the foundations for his house. Peg helped unload the cart. The man showed her how to lay bricks, and she laid bricks all that day and the next.
“You’re a good worker, Peg,” said the man. “What should I pay you?”
“Pay me in bricks,” said Peg.
So, every day she laid bricks for the man’s house, and then she took away leftover bricks and built her own house. She remembered the wolf, and she did not build near the forest.
The man gave all the odd-coloured bricks to Peg. So, her house was pink and yellow and orange and sandy and grey and cream and russet and apricot and copper.
Small pieces of left-over iron sheet covered the roof like the petals of a rose. Coloured glass bottles made a window, with a lace curtain. Peg’s door came from a broken wardrobe. She hung it with the mirror on the outside. “Then visitors can comb their hair and straighten their collars before they knock.”
When Peg had put a rug on the floor, and some flowers on the table, she went to bed.
Meanwhile, Pog and Pug were very happy. There is a lot for a pig to eat in a forest, like rabbit and truffles. Sometimes they sold truffles in the local market and bought onions and garam masala to spice up their dinners. In the evenings they played Scrabble, or backgammon.
They both had completely forgotten about the wolf.
Now, one day they were cooking a nice fresh rabbit with onions and herbs, and deep in the forest, the wolf smelt the wonderful aroma. He followed the smell all the way to Pog’s house of sticks. Pog was there by himself, making gravy. Pug had gone over to his house for a vintage bottle of cider to have with the rabbit.
The wolf put his front paws on Pog’s window sill. He saw the fat little pig, he smelt the rabbit, and saliva ran down the wolf’s chin.
“Little pig! Little pig! Let me come in!” he called out.
Pog was terrified. He shook so much he dropped the gravy jug on the floor. He could hardly remember the magic words his mother had told him to say if his life was ever in danger.
“Not by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin!” he squealed.
“I can’t see any hair on your chin, fat little boy,” said the wolf. “I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll blow your house in!”
So he HUFFED and he PUFFED and he blew the house in. Pog grabbed the Scrabble and ran for his life towards Pug’s house.
The wolf stopped to slurp up the gravy and burnt his mouth eating the rabbit, and that saved Pog’s life.
“Pug! Pug! It’s the wolf! It’s the wolf!” screamed Pog, banging on Pug’s door. Pug let him in, and Pog fell on the floor, out of breath and out of strength.
The wolf came to Pug’s house just as Pug locked the door. The wolf put his front paws on the window sill and looked in. He saw TWO fat little pigs, and saliva ran down the wolf’s chin.
“Little pigs! Little pigs! Let me come in!” he called out.
Pug was terrified. He shook so much he dropped the cider bottle on the floor. He could hardly remember the magic words his mother had told him to say if his life was ever in danger.
“Not by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin,” he squealed.
“I can’t see any hair on your chin, fat little boy,” said the wolf. I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll blow your house in! So he HUFFED and he PUFFED and he blew the house in, and Pog holding the Scrabble and Pug grabbing the backgammon were blown out the other side.
Pog and Pug ran towards Peg’s house as fast as two fat little pigs who have been eating too much good food in the forest can run. The wolf stopped to slurp up the cider and cut his paw on the broken glass, and that saved their lives.
“Peg! Peg! It’s the wolf! It’s the wolf!” screamed Pog and Pug, banging on Peg’s door.
Peg let them in, and they fell on the floor, out of breath and out of strength.
The wolf, running on three legs, came to Peg’s house just as Peg locked the door. He looked and saw another wolf in the mirror. He turned and ran. He looked back and saw the other wolf running away.
So he went back to the house.
He put his paws on the window sill, but he could not see anything through the bottles. “All the same, I’m sure there are three fat little pigs in there,” he said to himself, and saliva ran down the wolf’s chin.
“Little pigs! Little pigs! Let me come in!” he called out.
Pog and Pug were terrified. They dropped the Scrabble and the backgammon on the floor.
“Not by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin,” they squealed.
“Whatever,” said Peg.
“There’s no hair on your chins, fat little boys,” said the wolf. “I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll blow your house in.”
So he HUFFED and he PUFFED and nothing at all happened.
So he HUFFED and he PUFFED and Peg opened the door. She picked up the wolf by the neck with her bricklayer’s arm.
“Listen, wolf,” said Peg. “If you ever come around here again, I’ll drop you down my chimney into the fire. You got that?”
The wolf ran away on three legs, howling with his burnt mouth and holding his hurt neck.
Peg went back inside. Pog and Pug were hiding under the table with the vase of flowers.
“Okay, boys,” said Peg. “I’ll put on the kettle and we’ll have a cup of tea. Then we’ll talk about learning to lay bricks, building two new houses, and having our mother to visit for Sunday lunch.”