I've built a literary-themed garden in recent months; and thought to base a story in the confines of this garden with some of the character in this garden. I thought 'Alice In Wonderland' and 'Hansel & Gretel' would go well.
“I think we’re lost.” She said looking around at the tall, dark columns surrounding them in the darkness, “We haven’t seen the path for a while.”
Her brother turned on her, “I don’t think so. Look!” he pointed and they both saw a house sitting in its own little space, “I think this is a great place. Doesn’t it look ... like home?”
She shrugged and her hair fell over her face, “I’m not sure. But my feet hurt and I’m hungry.”
He put his around his sister’s shoulders, “Well, come on, let’s knock on the door and see who lives there.”
“You do it... I’m not going near it. The last place was huge and hissed at us.” She cringed away from him and he sighed. She watched him as her brother walked over to the door and knocked on it. It opened and a kindly old woman stepped out with her knobbly old walking cane by her side and a raven on her shoulder. She didn’t look too bad; and she walked over to the house when her brother signalled her over.
“This is my sister. We’re kind of lost... we’re wondering if you could help us please?” he asked.
“Well, well... such a day to have such polite visitors as yourselves.” She smiled, bent over with age, “Please do come in and we will eat a meal together.”
She turned from the door, just before her brother led her inside, “Did you hear something?”
“It’s getting dark, let’s go. This is shelter and food.” He pointed, “And you’re hearing things?”
She glared at him, as she turned from the house, peering into the darkness, “I’m not hearing things. Somebody ‘psst’ed at me.” She backed away from the door, “And I really don’t feel safe about this place. I mean, who makes a house out of gingerbread – or what looks like it – anyway? What about cockroaches and ants? And doesn’t it get wet and soggy when it rains?”
“Sis, get inside!”
She turned from the house again, “There is goes again! I’m not going inside that house!”
The bent over old woman’s grin widened as she threw away the cane and grabbed her brother, “Fine, I’ll make do with just one of you!”
She picked up the cane, which landed next to her, and started beating the woman hard, “Let him go! He’s my brother!”
The woman reached for the cane, and as though it had a mind of its own, it flew over to the old woman and into her bony hand. She spun it around and whacked him over the head once with it and he collapsed. The old woman picked up the boy as though he weight almost nothing and dragged him inside where the door slammed shut; leaving the girl outside in the dark.
It began to rain.
She stood there, pulling her coat around her knowing she wanted to get her brother out of that house, but not having the slightest idea how.
“Well, if only you had turned around and taken two more steps into the darkness, you would have run into me.” A voice said to her right; and emerging from the darkness, was a lovely white rabbit in a dark blue waistcoat. He checked his fob watch and slid it back into the pocket on his waistcoat, “You don’t have much time to get him out of there. She eats children.”
“Well, how do I do this?” she asked, “And I’m talking to a rabbit...”
His ears twitched slightly, “Just think of it, I’m talking to a girl, both our worlds have collided and we have to work around them. But if we don’t work together, we’re going to be too late... like I am. I’m late for a very important date as it is; but do you see me panicking?”
“Well, not yet.” She smiled.
“So, what do we do?”
He woke up tied to a chair.
“It’s about time you woke up. I didn’t want to run the risk of cooking you with your clothes on... have done that before. I was picking buttons out of my teeth for days afterwards.” She grumbled as she stood at the stove, tasted something and then turned from it, “Now, you’re not fat enough. I want you to eat something.”
His eyes widened: “What?”
The rabbit pulled a bottle from one of his pockets and it had a label on it: “Drink me.”
“Oh thank you, I’m so thirsty.”
“This is not for you.” He pulled the bottle away from her, “This is for your brother.” He pointed to the house, “Now you have to get inside there and feed it to him, and he’ll get big – really big! – and then when he gets big enough, there’ll be food for him to eat on top of that seat over there which will shrink him down to his normal size again.” He gave her the bottle.
“Only for him.”
“Why can’t you do it?”
“I’m a rabbit... she’s eats everything! And she’s been trying to catch me for a very long time.” He snorted.
“Okay.” She took the bottle and sneaked over to the house, walked down the side where her brother was sitting at a table eating a meal. Oh! It looked so good! But in the time she had stood outside talking to the rabbit, he had put on a lot of weight! Her eyes widened as he gorged himself on the food there. Then, she spotted the glass he had been drinking from; it was almost empty! She reached in through the window, grabbed it, filled it with the “Drink me” bottle contents and put it back, then waited for him to drink from the glass. The moment her brother did, she watched him stop eating, looked inside the empty glass and look out the window as he started to grow, and grow and grow!
Well, the moment his left foot smashed through the wall of the house, she was running out towards the rabbit who was hopping about whispering for her to hurry up! She made it out to him just in time to see her brother grow to the size of a giant!
“Oh my! You never told me he was going to get this big!” she slapped the rabbit on the shoulder.
“Well, you never asked.” He slapped her shoulder, “And stop slapping me.”
The house was destroyed completely and the old woman ran screaming away as her raven flew off into the night. It was then, the boy looked around and spotted the cake on the seat. It was on a plate with a note next to it: “Eat Me.”
“Oh yummy.” His voice thundered from above them, “Cake!” he picked it up and took a huge bite from it; boulder-sized crumbs fell from above, tumbling to ground, nearly landing on his sister and the rabbit. Almost as soon as he had begun to eat the cake, he put it back down, as he started to feel strange – as though he was going to be sick and turned inside out at the same time. His whole body shrank right down to the size he was before, and he found himself standing next to the wreckage of the house he had been a prisoner of for a few hours.
“Hansel!” his sister’s voice called out from the night, “Oh you’re okay!”
He turned, “Gretel!” they embraced, “I’m so glad you didn’t go inside that house. The food was okay, but it was her... she was an awful witch.”
“I got you out – with the help of the strangest fellow.” She said turning only to find that the white rabbit had vanished, “He was a white rabbit. He got me to get that liquid to you; I have no idea how that cake got there.”
“I’m not going to worry. We better be going, though, that house will be noticed in the daylight.” He said, “I did notice something when I was bigger. We will find it better in the daylight though. So, let’s stay near here for now.”
Morning broke and the two siblings started off through the Green Forest to the white castle in the corner of the realm. Hansel assured his sister they’d be safe there for a long time.
Next to the house a huge door opened and a giant stepped outside to great the day. They looked down at the house they had put there only a week before to decorate their garden, “What the hell?” the whole little house had been destroyed by something – smashed up into pieces! She grabbed a nearby bucket, “Damned possums!”