The nuts were falling, so a cock and hen went up to the mountains to eat them before the squirrels hid them all. When evening came, they either had eaten so many nuts, or they were just lazy, they didn’t want to walk back home. So the cock built a carriage out of nut shells. The hen got in, but the cock wasn’t about to pull it for her.
Along came a duck who yelled at them for coming to her mountain. She attacked the cock, but he fought back and she begged for mercy. So they harnessed her to the carriage and set off home. Along the way, they picked up a pin and needle.
It grew dark before they reached home, so they stopped at an inn. The landlord didn’t want to let them stay, but they promised the egg the hen had laid that day as well as the duck.
Very early the next morning, the cock woke the hen. They put a hole in her egg and ate it all, then set the shell on the hearth. They set the sleeping needle in the landlord’s chair, and put the pin in his towel. They then flew home. The duck heard them, and she found a stream and left.
When the landlord woke up, he washed his face, but when he dried off the pin scraped his face. When he tried to light his pipe, the eggshell flew in his eyes … somehow. And when he sat down, the needle poked into him. He was so angry, but he couldn’t find the cock, hen, or duck, and swore off helping vagabonds.
So because the cock beat up the duck, that means he can just give her away when it suits him?
Living on a farm with chickens, I know that chickens will sometimes eat their own eggs. But in a world of talking chickens, isn’t that more cannibalism than you’d normally find in a children’s story?
If they could fly, then why did they walk to the mountain? After writing that, I went back and saw that in the story it just said they went to the mountain, it didn’t specify what mode of transport they used. But why didn’t they rest a bit, then fly home? Also, ducks can fly, so why did she have to swim away?