Original Story

Early one morning, Peter opened the gate and walked out into the big green meadow.

A little bird was sitting up on a tree, and when he saw Peter, his friend, he chirped to tell him that he was there.

But just then, one of Grandfather’s ducks came waddling out through the garden gate and made for the pond nearby.

When he saw the duck, the little bird flew down from the tree to take a closer look.
“Why do you waddle like that? Can’t you fly?” the little bird asked.
“No, I can’t fly. But I can swim.” The duck answered, diving into the pond.

The little bird thought this was extraordinary, and hopped along the edge of the pond, arguing with the duck about whether it was better to be able to fly or to swim.

Suddenly Peter saw something moving in the long grass. It was a cat, creeping up carefully so that she could catch the bird while he was arguing with the duck.

“Look out!” Peter shouted. The bird quickly few up to the tree, and the duck quacked angrily from the safety of the pond. The cat walked round and round the bottom of the tree and wondered if she should climb up to catch the bird. “But when I get there, he may fly away”,  she thought.

Now Grandfather came out of the house and saw Peter outside the garden gate. He was angry.
“You should stay in the garden as you have been told. It is dangerous out there. A wolf might come out of the forest and eat you up.”

And as soon as they had disappeared, a huge wolf did come out of the forest, looking for something to eat.

Immediately, the cat climbed up the tree.

The little bird flew on to another branch, as far as she could get from the cat. The duck would have been safe quacking with terror in the middle of the pond, but she was so frightened that by mistake she jumped out fo the  water on to the grass, not far from the wolf.

She tried to run away, but her legs were short, and he was getting nearer… and nearer… and then he got her! In one enormous gulp, he swallowed her down.

The little bird and the cat were watching all this from up in the tree. The wolf looked up and saw them, and then he walked round and round the tree, wondering how he could catch them too.

All this time, Peter had been standing behind the locked gate, watching the wolf and the cat and the little bird.

Now he went into the house and fetched a thick rope. He climbed up the high wall round the garden and out on to a branch of the tree which hung over the wall. He said to the little bird,

“You fly round and round the wolf’s head so that he doesn’t notice what I’m doing. But be careful!”
The little bird flew down and did as Peter had said, only just escaping the wolf’s great jaws as it snapped angrily at him.

Up in the tree, Peter had tied one end of the rope to the branch and was making a lasso out of the other end. While the wolf was busy trying to catch the bird, Peter let down the lasso and very cleverly caught the wolf by the tail, pulling as hard as he could.

When the wolf felt the tightening of the lasso, he began jumping and bucking to try to get loose, but this only made the loop round his tail tighter than ever.

At this moment, Peter heard the sound of shooting.
A party of hunters had followed the wolf’s trail through the forest, and now they came out into the meadow. “Don’t shoot!” Peter cried. “We have caught the wolf, the bird and I. Help us to take him to the zoo.”

So now there was a splendid procession, led by Peter; after him came the hunters, leading the wolf. Last of all came Grandfather and the cat. Grandfather was not pleased. “Suppose Peter hadn’t been able to catch the wolf, what would have happened then?”

The little bird flew above them, chirping his triumphant song happily. “Peter and I are wonderful! Look what we have caught!”

And if you listen very carefully you can hear the duck quacking away inside the wolf, because he had been in such a hurry, swallowed her alive.

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Re-written by Boon Sin Ler