English name: Cassie Chinese name: 陈秋含 Student Number: 180110509
A happy life in poverty.
Once upon a time, when there were devils, elves, and giants roaming the earth, there was a farmer named Eugene who lived in a poor village with his family and suffered a lot. There were fruit trees, flowers, and streams in other villages, but it was desolate there. The water supply was very meager. People made double efforts for half of most other people’s return.
Although the living environment was terrible, Eugene still felt very lucky. He had a kind wife, three sons, and two daughters. He respected his wife and treated every child as a treasure. The children were also very competitive. The daughters had both good character and reputations. The sons were also very honest and friendly. He really felt happy with the company of his family.
Eugene liked all five of his children, but the youngest son, Glenn, was the most pleasing to him. He had dark blue eyes and was active all day, but he was a sleepwalker. He would get up and walk around at night, which worried Eugene.
After trying many ways to solve this problem, he finally untied a small bell from the goat's neck and hung it on Glenn's neck, so that if he got up in the middle of the night, others would be woken up. Then Glenn's sleepwalking disappeared, and the bell stayed with him.
Eugene had always been looking forward to the day when these children grew up. At that time, he would be a proud old man.
Unfortunately, his happiness didn't last long. One day, the devil came to the village. Every step he took, the earth trembled. The villagers who were working fled everywhere. They went back to their homes and locked the doors.
This devil had also visited other villages. It may have been because Eugene’s village had been so poor that it has been spared so long, but this time it failed to escape. It was said that when this devil knocked on the roof of a house, that family would have to hand over a child; otherwise, all the children of the family will would be taken away. The delivered child would be taken to a castle far away, and the castle was said to be a hell of cannibalism.
The devil knocked on the Eugene's house, which put the whole family in a state of collapse and fear. He and his wife suffered a lot. They had to choose one of their five children to hand over. How cruel it was for the parents.
They used a pen to write down the names of each child on five stones and prepared to randomly choose one. But his wife refused to choose, and Eugene dared not. The devil couldn’t wait. Eugene had to close his eyes and chose one. It was his youngest son, Glenn.
Poor Glenn did not know what was going on until Eugene shut had him out of the house and bolted the door. Glen was crying at the door, trembling in fear and agony. After the ground shaking had faded, so did Glenn's screams. The whole village was silent; only Eugene’s crying could be heard.
Several years later, the village fell into even more serious poverty. Eugene was now like a waste of a man, he hardly ate, drank, or worked. It was useless for his family to try to persuade him to take care of himself or them. He didn't do anything every day; He just looked at the mountains and talked gibberish to different people. The villagers called him crazy.
Then one day at dawn, he didn't wake up his family and went on the road alone with some simple equipment. He passed through the desert, across the river valley, over the mountains, and came to the bottom of the mountain where the devil lived.
After a moment's silence, the devil opened the mountain gate. Instead of ending Eugene's life immediately, he squinted at Eugene, who was dressed in rags, with blood on his face and festering wounds on his skin. The devil was very interested in the little old man who was not afraid to stand before him and threaten him. He even hoped to chat with him before Eugene tried to kill him.
From Eugene's words, the devil learned that he had taken away his beloved little son, and he wanted to fight with him to avenge all the families who had lost children to the devil. The devil thought Eugene was brave, so he took him into a room full of curtains; Eugene saw that Glenn had grown up healthy and happy, playing in a paradise-like fairyland, but Glenn could not see him or hear his voice.
The devil told him that he had forced Eugene accept a test of love on the day that he had taken Glenn, and Glenn's current compensation was because of that. If he had not made a choice at that time, all his children would have died, but because he had been a responsible father, the devil respected him.
The greatest tragedy of life is not making a wrong choice but simply making any choice at all; the fear of making mistakes is a common fault of the human heart. People are often afraid to face the possibility of negative consequences, and therefore, do not want to take on the pain of completing the choice.
Eugene was brave. He had saved the lives of the other children by making a painful choice. He wanted to take Glen home, but thinking of Glen's happy life now, he chose to go back alone. The devil praised Eugene for being a good father and handed him a glass bottle to drink on his way home. He took the bottle and left without saying a word.
Forget the painful past
When people in the village talked about Eugene, it was like talking about the dead, but his wife was still waiting for him. She saw a thin figure that day, and thought it was an ascetic monk. When he approached, she saw that it was her husband.
Eugene, who returned home, had forgotten all of these things. He had forgotten the devil and a child named Glenn. It was because he drank the bottle of water to erase his memory. The devil had given him a second compensation. As he returned, rain poured down upon the village, and the whole village was rejuvenated.
Eugene also had a new life with his children. He looked at their happiness.
But in some nights, Eugene couldn't sleep. At this time, he would walk out of the house into the night. Every once in a while, he will hear a bell ringing. As long as he heard the sound, it seemed that their gust of wind surprising him, but then, like all things, it's gone……