2021 Reprints: Final Story

Little Red Riding Hood isn’t really named Little Red Riding Hood. Her name is Elizabeth, or Mary, or some other good English name. Regardless of whether her name is Mary or Elizabeth she always loves the smell of her mother’s baking, the way she can wake up as dawn wipes gray out of the sky, and even though she has to go milk the cows, gather eggs and pull water from the well, she’s happy. She’s happy because the smell of bread fills her nostrils and makes her feel loved and cared for. Everyone acknowledges her mother as the best baker in the village. Every day her mother sends her down the path to the edge of the forest to her grandmother’s cottage with a loaf of bread in a basket, because her mother says that a daughter’s duty (she looks pointedly at Mary/Elizabeth as she says this) is to take care of an aging mother. So, Mary/Elizabeth walks down the path every day and brings a loaf of bread. [read full story]

“Little Red Riding Hood[s]” by Jennifer Pullen was originally published in Clockhouse, 2015.