The frightened witch

At the edge of the dark forest, a witch lives in a ramshackle house. I know what you’re thinking: ‘A witch, no.’ But this is not a witch to be afraid of. On the contrary, this witch herself is afraid. Afraid of everything and everyone and she doesn’t even dare to go into the forest. She always stays as close to her cottage as possible. She had grown to hate the woods by now. She is very lonely because of her fears, but how can she change that?


Timmy and Lopke are good friends and Lopke are a bit in love with Timmy, but she doesn’t dare to tell him that. Today they decide to go on an adventure together. The weather is beautiful, and Timmy suggests that they go to the dark lake to sail to the other side and discover the scary forest. Lopke knows that a witch lives there and she is afraid of that, but she still goes along because she does not want to disappoint Timmy.

Together they drag the inflatable boat out of the barn and row to the middle of the lake. In the middle of the lake, Lopke looks anxiously at the other side and feels that her stomach is going to hurt a little. Not that she is sick, no, her belly is painful because her fear of the witch resurfaces. She remembers the time when she went to the woods alone and accidentally stood in front of the witch’s cottage.

The witch had asked her to help her overcome her fear of the forest. “If you help me, I promise I will turn you into a beautiful princess with cool blonde curls. You will be so beautiful that everyone must love you,” she had said.

Well, Lopke didn’t fall for that. After all, she knew the story of Hansel and Gretel, no that wouldn’t happen to her.

Lopke had run away and had hidden behind a tree and shouted, “You’re a scary witch and I hate witches.”

“Hey, wake up,” Timmy shouts. “Are you dreaming, or something!”

Lopke is startled out of her thoughts and suddenly they see a duck landing next to the boat with a lot of noise.

“Quack, quack,” the duck shouts cheerfully.

“Hello, duck. Do you want to play with us,’ Timmy and Lopke shout in harmony.

What they cannot know is that the duck is not a duck at all, but a cormorant. Sometimes he is a duck and sometimes a cormorant. That’s because the witch from the forest has enchanted him. Every now and then he catches a fish for her, and she is always very happy about that. He only has a problem, and the witch could not help him with that.

The duck nods and together they play hide and seek. He dives underwater and suddenly reappears, but not as a duck, not as a cormorant. The cormorant looking gloomy out of his eyes.

‘Why do you look so sad,’ Lopke asks.

“That’s because I don’t dare to fly,” he replies.

“Oh, but we can help you with that. We will encourage you and then you will see that you can fly.’

The cormorant looks at them hopefully and together they practice strengthening its wings. Timmy and Lopke wave their arms and the cormorant wave its wings and then suddenly it jumps up and flies into the air. Proud and cheerful he skims over the water and turns around the boat, but then he disappears into the woods.


At the edge of the lake, the witch has watched the lovely incident and she gets all warm inside. Could they also help me get rid of my fear of the forest, she wonders.

Lopke has discovered the witch and wants to go back to shore, but no matter what they try the boat moves in the wrong direction. The side where the witch is located.

The witch greets the friend’s whit a smile and says that they don’t have to be afraid of her. “Not you either, Lopke. Why are you helping the cormorant but not me?’

“Because you’re a scary witch. There are no good witches, go away, I’m afraid of you,” she replies.

Timmy looks at Lopke in surprise. He doesn’t know her like that at all. Why doesn’t she help the witch, I’ve never noticed that she’s afraid of anything, he thinks.

“What’s your problem then,” he asks.

“If I’m honest, I have to tell you that I’m not only afraid of people but also the forest. I dare to walk from my house to the lake, but only when the sun is shining,” the witch replies. “I wish you could help me, please I will reward you well for it.”

“Timmy, you shouldn’t believe her, I don’t trust her for anything,” Lopke whispers.

“Okay, I understand. Go on, I won’t stop you,” the witch says.

She turns around sadly and walks to her cottage. Silent and thoughtful, Timmy rowed to the other side, but then Lopke suddenly suggested that they should go back to help the witch.

The witch is happy to see them again and pours tea for them. They get a delicious cookie that she baked herself. Timmy and Lopke look around the small house, which does not look like a witch’s house at all.

Nowhere is there a large cooking pot to be seen and no scary herbs, spiders, mice, or a large magic ball. There is no evidence that the witch harms someone. They drink the tea and then the three of them go into the forest. They are a bit scared themselves, but they don’t let the witch notice that.

Together they whisper courage to the witch and after an hour the witch loses her fear of the forest and knows what is so beautiful. Lopke has also lost the fear of the witch.


They walk back to the witch’s house and get some extra cookies for the road. The witch asks how she can thank them, but the friends say: ‘that is not necessary.’

‘The reward of losing your fear is enough for us,’ Lopke replies.

Timmy and Lopke promise to come back regularly to take a nice walk through the forest with her. The witch waves them off and from her cottage, she sees both friends, who are now also her friends, rowing to the other side.


So, you see, even if you are still so afraid of something, you can always overcome it.