Hansel began to worry for their safety. He cried to Gretel: “What if we are attacked, or eaten? What about wolves? Bears? Cougars? Raccoons? Gretel, oh Gretel – what are we to do?”
“I will feel it out,” she replied, getting up from the dead log. She took Hansel’s hand, and the two followed his trail of stones. Their flat surfaces shimmered in the moonlit night.
Hansel and Gretel finally arrived back home at the break of dawn; however, they were so tired that both immediately fell asleep right in front of their cottage door.
They awoke tucked in their beds to the sounds of the woodcutter and his wife arguing.
“How could you leave our beloved children in the forest all alone?” they heard their father ask sadly.
“We will… We will all starve, if they stay here! There are too many mouths and NOT enough food. It is the only way… the only way…” she replied.
Now Hansel and Gretel surely knew their luck was over.