THE OBEDIENT KID
IN a stable lived a goat that had a pretty little kid, of which she was very fond. This kid was too young to go about with her mother; and the mother was half afraid to leave her by herself. But the goat was obliged to go out to get food.
One day she said to her little kid, "My dear, I am going to fetch a cabbage and a lettuce for your dinner. Mind you do not go out while I am away. Lock the door of our stable, and do not open it to anyone who knocks, without first looking out of the window to see who it is that wants to come in. Pray, mind what I say to you, and do as I bid you."
"Yes, Mother," said the kid, "do not be afraid, I will do as you bid me."
So off the old goat went; but she waited outside the door while the little kid shut it; and she looked back very often to see that it was kept shut.
A wolf who lived near, saw the goat pass by. He had often wished to eat up that nice tender young kid, and this day, having had no breakfast, he was very hungry. "Ah! ah! now the old mother is out, I will go and eat that silly young kid. She will be sure to leave the door open." Away he ran to the stable where the goat lived. He went to the door with a bounce, thinking to push it open. He did not expect to find the door fastened; but he was mistaken, and he could not get in.
"Although you have fastened the door, Miss Kid," growled he to himself, "I will eat you I will knock, and you will be sure to come and open the door. And then "
He was so pleased with the thoughts of eating the little kid that he licked his lips; and lifting up his paw, gave a loud knock at the door.
"Who is there outside?" asked the little kid from within.
"I, my dear," said the wolf, trying to speak like the goat, "I, your mother; open the door quickly; I am in a hurry."
"0, no! you cannot be my mother," said the kid.
"Open the door this minute, or I shall be very angry with you," said the wolf.
"If you are my mother," said the little kid, "you will wait while I look out of the window, for my mother told me to do so before I opened the door."
"Open the door directly," called out the wolf. But the wise little kid went up to the window and looked out.
"0! you bad wolf," said she, "to try to cheat me; but you will not eat me today; so you may go away ha! ha! ha!" and the kid laughed. "I take care to mind what my dear mother says to me; ha! ha! ha! master wolf you may go away; ha! ha! ha!"
The wolf gnashed his teeth and growled. He looked very fierce at the little kid, but he could not reach her. The kid went from the window, but the wolf still heard her "ha! ha! ha!" as she laughed at him safe inside the stable.
The wolf went away, and soon afterward the goat came back. She knocked at the door. The little kid asked, "Who is there?"
"It is I, your Mother, darling," said the goat.
"You speak like my mother; but I will be sure," said the kid, "before I open the door. If you are my mother really, you will not mind waiting while I look out of the window."
So again the kid looked out of the window, and when she saw it was her own mother, she ran quickly and opened the door.
"Dear Mother," said she, "such a large, cruel wolf has been here; but I did as you bade me; I looked out of the window before I opened the door."
"Dear kid," said the goat, and she licked her with her tongue; "good kid, wise little kid. If you had not obeyed me, that cruel, greedy wolf would have eaten you up, and you would never have seen your mother again. Good child, to do as I bade you."
And then the goat gave the kid the fine lettuce and cabbage she had brought home with her.