by Sam K.
(Kent Conneticut USA)
Once, there lived a poor farmer in a small white house in a valley. Every day he would get up early to tend to his animals, then do whatever needed to be done around the farm. Life was good but he had one problem; every year, it seemed only half of his crops would grow. So he sadly hitched up his horse and brought the few crops he had to town.
One year, as usual, the poor farmer hitched up his horse to take his crops to town. When he was on his way home he was confronted by an old man about his age. The poor farmer stopped and asked him what he wanted. He said in a cold, shaky voice “I will double the price you get for your crops if you give them to me every year”. The farmer willingly agreed.
The next spring, the poor farmer brought his crops to the old man’s cave. He watched in amazement as the old man gobbled down the food. Then the old man took a pickaxe and went down deep in the dark of the cave. The poor farmer heard noises of metal on stone. He came back with a bag of gold pieces. He did this the next two years. The farmer even had enough money to buy new livestock to replace the old and sick ones he used to have.
Three years later, he brought his crops, but when he got to the cave the old man was gone. He walked farther into the cave but then he heard a loud crash. The opening of the cave had fallen in. He was trapped. Out of fear, he yelled for help but no help came. Finally he heard a voice. It was the voice of the old man “you thought I would give you that deal with no price in the end?”
As it turns out, the old man had asked for the food so when he accumulated enough, he could trap the poor farmer in his mine so he could continue his mining for him and eat the food he grew.
The poor farmer was never seen again. His farm was abandoned and all of his friends mourned his disappearance. Some say when you put your ear to the rock pile at the top of the hill on a silent night, you can hear a faint cry “help me…”.