The Hobyahs

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4 min

Tale from England.

Once upon a time there was an old man, an old woman and a little girl who lived together in a house made of turnips. They had a little dog that was just called "The Dog Rack", but he was happy with it anyway.

Some distance away, the awful hobyahs had their den. They loathed their neighbors and one night they came up to the turnip house and howled: “Hobyah! Hobjah! Hobjah! Away with the old man! Away with the old lady! Away with the house and away with the Hundrackan! Down with the little girl in the hoobja sack!” But when the dog heard this, he stuck his head out of a window and barked the worst he could. The hobyahs were frightened and immediately ran home to their den. The old man woke up from the noise and thought: "Why in the world is the Dograck barking in the middle of the night? Tomorrow night I will lock him up in the turnip basket!” And so he did.

The next evening the hobyahs came back and shouted: “Hobyah! Hobjah! Hobjah! Away with the old man! Away with the old lady! Away with the house and away with the Hundrackan! Down with the little girl in the hoobja sack!” But the Houndrack heard them and pushed, eel and rolled out of the turnip basket. Then he barked after the hobyahs and chased them all the way to their pot. The old man woke up again and thought: "Now the Dog Rack is barking so loudly that no man can sleep." Tomorrow night I'll put him in the turnip basket and tie the turnip rope around it!” And he did. The next evening the hobyahs came back again and shouted: “Hobyah! Hobjah! Hobjah! Away with the old man! Away with the old woman! Away with the house and away with the Hundrackan! Down with the little girl in the hoobja sack!”

But this time the dog couldn't get out of the turnip basket, so the hobyahs tore down the whole turnip house, put the girl in their hobyah sack, and took her home to their dark den. There they hung the sack with the girl on a nail on the wall. Then they came forward one by one, scratched the sack and shouted "Look here! Look here! Look here!" Who knows why they did that, because hoobjers are strange creatures. Then they all went to bed and slept until the next night, because hoobjers hate the sunlight of the day.

Meanwhile, the old man and the old woman had escaped from their collapsed turnip house. When they noticed that they were alone, they stopped and wondered, "Where are the little girl and the Dograck?" Then they remembered that the Houndrack was trapped in the turnip basket. They immediately ran back and let the dog out, but they couldn't find the girl anywhere. Then they realized that the hobyahs must have taken her.

But little Hundrackan tracked them with his snout and towards morning they arrived at the hobyahs' den. From inside the cave they could hear someone crying and when the old man poked his head in he could see large tears dripping from a sack hanging on the wall. He pulled out the sack and opened it and immediately the little girl looked forward. Everyone was of course very happy, but then the old man thought twice. "If we build our turnip house, the hobyahs will come again!" So he and little Dograck went down into the hobyahs' den. "Little Dograck, jump into the sack," said the old man, and the dog did. Then he hung the sack on the wall and went out to the old woman and the girl.

That evening when the hobyahs woke up they went to the sack, scratched at it and shouted “Look here! Look here! Look here!" Then they took down the sack and opened it... But then little Hundrakkan jumped out and ate them all! So now there are no more hobyahs.

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