How the snowdrops appeared

after a Romanian story,
dedicated to Erji Florea

Snowdrops fieldLong, long time ago, when the man still spoke the language of the animals, there was a good-hearted man who lived together with his wife at the edge of a forest. They had three children and they lived together very happily in their little house. The children were beautiful and they alaways listened to their parents. The oldest one was taller and stronger, but the second brother was always joyful and helpful to the others. In what concerns the youngest, there was no other child more beautiful than him. The three brothers loved the plants and the animals and helped their parents to the daily work.
But one day the misfortune came in their home because the mother got sick and died. They missed her and suffered a lot without her, but the time passed and slowly the pain became less intense.   
After a while the father thought that it will be better for his children if he brings a new mother to take care of them. So, one day he got married again and brought a new wife at home.
Everything seemed to go better and better, but the stepmother wasn’t at all as the father thought. When he was at home the woman was hardworking and good with the children, but when he was away she became totally different. She no longer worked and she tormented the children. She asked them to do the most difficult and most ugly works, she gave them no food and she always threatened them. The three brothers did not dare to tell their father the truth because they didn’t want him to get upset. So they continued to do their daily works.
One day the stepmother thought that it will be wonderful if she get rid of the children. She will have house just for herself and she will have no longer to pretend that she loves them. The father of the children will have eyes only for her. So she put her thoughts into practice.
She called the children to her and told them that in the middle of the forest grows a tree that makes a magic fruit that brings good luck. Therefore they have to go there, pick the fruit and bring it to her. But outside was winter and a lot of snow covered the earth. You could hear the harsh wind whistling through the fir trees.
The stepmother opened the door of the little house and without hesitation, sent the children away. They started to walk slowly through the wood.
A crow saw them walking through the snow and through the cold wind. She knew that the stepmother actually wants to get rid of the children and she took pity on them. She flew far away, to God and told him all she saw and knew. God, in his kindness, asked himself how he could help the children so the stepmother could never torment them. God transformed than the children in some of the most beautiful flowers that announce the coming of spring – the Snowdrops.
Their white flower heads rose above the snow and enjoy the sunlight. The fluffy snow kept their feet warm and they felt no more the cold. All those who passed near them wondered how beautiful these snowy flowers are. They never saw something like these before.
Not long after this, the spring came and the entire nature has been awakened. The warmth of the sunlight that spring brought melted the frozen heart of the stepmother.
Since then the birds, the insects and the people are very happy when they see snowdrops because they know that when the snowdrops bloom, the spring comes and she brings joy and hope.

Retold by M. Arjoca,

More information here about

Bulb plants, the flowers of spring