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The Rainbow Book of Fairy Tales for Five-Year-Olds by  Lisa Ripperton

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The Travels of a Fox

A fox was digging behind a stump, and he found a bumble-bee. The fox put the bumble-bee in a bag and he traveled.

The first house he came to he went in, and he said to the mistress of the house:

"May I leave my bag here while I go to Squintum's?"

"Yes," said the woman.

"Then be careful not to open the bag," said the fox.

But as soon as the fox was out of sight, the woman just took a little peep into the bag and out flew the bumble-bee, and the rooster caught him and ate him up.

After a while the fox came back. He took up his bag and he saw that the bumble-bee was gone, and he said to the woman:

"Where is my bumble-bee?"

And the woman said: "I just untied the bag, and the bumble-bee flew out, and the rooster ate him up."

"Very well," said the fox, "I must have the rooster, then."

So he caught the rooster and put him in his bag, and traveled.

And the next house he came to he went in, and said to the mistress of the house:

"May I leave my bag here while I go to Squintum's?"

"Yes," said the woman.

"Then be careful not to open the bag," said the fox.

But as soon as the fox was out of sight, the woman just took a little peep into the bag, and the rooster flew out, and the pig caught him and ate him up.

After a while the fox came back, and he took up his bag and he saw that the rooster was not in it, and he said to the woman: "Where is my rooster?"

And the woman said:

"I just untied the bag, and the rooster flew out, and the pig ate him."

"Very well," said the fox, "I must have the pig, then."

So he caught the pig and put him in his bag, and traveled.

And the next house he came to he went in, and he said to the mistress of the house:

"May I leave my bag here while I go to Squintum's?"

"Yes," said the woman.

"Then be careful not to open the bag," said the fox.

But as soon as the fox was out of sight, the woman just took a little peep into the bag, and the pig jumped out, and the ox ate him.

After a while the fox came back. He took up his bag and he saw that the pig was gone, and he said to the woman:

"Where is my pig?"

And the woman said:

"I just untied the bag, and the pig jumped out, and the ox ate him."

"Very well," said the fox, "I must have the ox, then."

So he caught the ox and put him in his bag, and traveled.

And the next house he came to he went in, and he said to the mistress of the house:

"May I leave my bag here while I go to Squintum's?"

"Yes," said the woman.

"Then be careful not to open the bag," said the fox.

But as soon as the fox was out of sight, the woman just took a little peep into the bag, and the ox got out, and the woman's little boy chased him away off over the fields.

After a while the fox came back. He took up his bag, and he saw that the ox was gone, and he said to the woman:

"Where is my ox?"

And the woman said:

"I just untied the string, and the ox got out, and my little boy chased him away off over the fields."

"Very well," said the fox, "I must have the little boy, then."

So he caught the little boy and he put him in his bag, and he traveled.

And the next house he came to he went in, and he said to the mistress of the house:

"May I leave my bag here while I go to Squintum's?"

"Yes," said the woman.

"Then be careful not to open the bag," said the fox.

The woman was making cake, and her children were around her asking for some.

"Oh, mother, give me a piece," said one; and, "Oh, mother, give me a piece," said the others.

And the smell of the cake came to the little boy who was weeping and crying in the bag, and he heard the children asking for cake and he said: "Oh, mammy, give me a piece."

Then the woman opened the bag and took the little boy out, and she put the house-dog in the bag in the little boy's place. And the little boy stopped crying and had some cake with the others.

After a while the fox came back. He took up his bag and he saw that it was tied fast, and he put it over his back and traveled far into the deep woods. Then he sat down and untied the bag, and if the little boy had been there in the bag things would have gone badly with him.

But the little boy was safe in the woman's house, and when the fox untied the bag the house-dog jumped out and ate him all up.

  
by Clifton Johnson
in For the Story Teller by Carolyn Sherwin Bailey, 1916
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