Once upon a time there was a young little girl who lived in a tiny village. She was reckoned the prettiest girl in the whole countryside. Her mother loved her more than her own life, but her grandmother loved her even more than that, and was always pampering her with little gifts. Once she gave the girl a red- colored riding-hood, and this was so becoming that the girl wore it every single day. And that is why she was called Little Red Riding-Hood.
One day her mother made some pastries and then called Little Red Riding-Hood into the kitchen. "Your grandmother is sick today," she said. "I'd like you to see how she's doing. You can take some pastries along with you, and this pot of freshly-made butter."
Little Red Riding-Hood put all the food in a wicker basket and covered it with a brightly-checkered cloth. Then she put on her riding-hood and her matching cape and off she went to her grandmother's house, which was through the woods and in another village.
She was walking through the woods when suddenly, a wolf jumped onto the path in front of her. He wanted to eat her up there and then, but he didn't dare because there were two woodcutters nearby. Instead, he asked the girl where she was going. Little Red Riding-Hood was unaware of the dangers involved in talking to a wolf, so she greeted him politely and said, "I'm going to see my grandmother. I'm taking her some pastries and a little pot of butter."
"Does she live far away?" asked the Wolf.
"Oh, yes," said Little Red Riding-Hood. "Do you see that mill over there? My grandmother's house is even further than that. She lives in the first house in the next village."
"Indeed," said the Wolf. "I think I'll pay her a visit myself. Here's an idea: I'll go this way, and you go that way, and we'll see which one of us gets there first."
Little Red Riding-Hood was saying goodbye when she realized that the Wolf was already gone: he was streaking off towards her grandmother's house. So instead, she picked a few berries to see if they were sweet or sour, and she ran after a butterfly, and she gathered a bouquet of flowers for her grandmother.
The Wolf soon arrived at the grandmother's house and immediately knocked on her door.
"Who's there?" called a voice from inside the house.
The Wolf said, "It's very little Red Riding-Hood", mimicking the girl's voice. "I've brought you some pastries and a bit pot of butter from my mother."
The grandmother was in bed, resting up. She said, "It's not locked. Just lift the latch and come in."
The Wolf lifted the latch and opened the door. Then he leapt on the bed in a single bound, and gobbled the grandmother down. He had not eaten in three days, and he was very hungry. He then shut the door and climbed into the grandmother's bed, pulling the covers up over his snout. He was waiting for Little Red Riding- Hood to arrive, and soon afterwards she did, and knocked on the door.
"Who's there?" cried the Wolf. He was mimicking the grandmother's voice, but not doing a very good job.
His voice frightened Little Red Riding-Hood. But she reasoned that her grandmother was hoarse because of her illness, and so she answered, "It's Little Red Riding-Hood. I've brought you some pastries and a little pot of butter from my mother."
The Wolf tried to soften his voice. He said, "It's not locked. Just lift the latch and come in."
Little Red Riding-Hood lifted the latch and opened the door.
The Wolf watched her come in and close the door. Then he pulled the sheet right over his head so he was completely hidden. He said, "Put the pastries and the butter on the table, and then come and lie in the bed with me."
Little Red Riding-Hood got undressed and climbed into bed with the Wolf. At once, she began to think that something was wrong.
"What big arms you have, grandmother!" she said in a confused tone of voice.
"All the better to hug you with, my child."
"And what big ears you have, grandmother!" she said, hoping she would never catch this strange disease.
"All the better to hear you with, my child."
"And what big eyes you have, grandmother!" she said, wondering why her grandmother smelled so much like a dog.
"All the better to see you with, my child."
"And what big teeth you have, grandmother!" she said, thinking she had never seen this side of her grandmother before.
By this time, the Wolf had heard and seen enough of Little Red Riding-Hood. He gave her a big hug with his big arms, and then bared his big teeth in a cruel grin.
"All the better to eat you with!" he growled in his wolf's voice, and then he swallowed her up in a single bite.