But of course the perfectly normal beast was living right there, in the clump of fallen cedars.
And the perfectly normal beast came out and surprised Hansel and Gretel.
Hansel said “Who are you?”
TPNB said “I’m the perfectly normal beast.”
Gretel said “Sorry but you don’t look perfectly normal to me.”
TPNB said “Well, that’s because I’m a beast. If you were a beast like me you’d probably say that I look normal.”
And Gretel said “That may be true.”
Hansel said “Are you here in the forest to do us harm?”
TPNB answered “Why, if I wanted to do you harm would I lurk in the darkest part of the forest by the fallen cedar trees?”
Hansel had no answer for that.
Then Gretel said “I’m hungry.”
And the PNB said “Are you? I have some sandwiches. Well, they look like sandwiches only they’re made out of pine bark and pine sap. But if you can overlook the pine bark and pine sap part they’re pretty good.”
Hansel said “I don’t wish to complain but I’m having a hard time overlooking the pine bark and pine sap part.”
Gretel agreed silently wishing she hadn’t taken such a voracious bite. Now her teeth were stuck together and her mouth tasted like pine-sol.
Then TPNB said “I guess you don’t like my sandwiches."
And Hasel replied “It’s not that I wish to disparage them but they’re inedible.”
Gretel spat in a most lady-like manner possible but could still only nod in agreement.
And TPNB said “I also have some gingerbread left over from the last time that strange, somewhat older, somewhat unattractive but never-the-less mean and nasty woman in the black pointy hat visited.”