The Teeny Tiny

sandy shore Perran Sands

It was low tide at Perran Sands when Merin walked home from church. The sea wind scraped her cheeks and her ears, and blew her thin grey curls about her sharp green eyes. Merin liked sifting the strandline and digging with her toe to see what the holiday makers had left behind. There was a thin line of tiny bits of pastel plastic rolled neatly by the tide but none of it was of any use to Merin. She decided to wander between the sandbanks, they undulated leaving dips where pools formed in between and Merin knew these would be lovely and warm in the afternoon sun.

She slipped off her shoes and sunk in her feet, feeling the water swish about her ankles. Letting her toes wriggle in the wet sand, Merin felt something hard, something scratchy and strange. She pulled out her foot and slid in her hand, the clear water murky with all the movement. Sure enough, Merin found something in amongst the sand, something a peculiar shape, what could it be? She washed her find in the pool and looked again, it was a set of teeth a very handsome set of teeth, big and milky white. She had always wanted new teeth, ever since the last of hers had rotted away.

Merin put the teeth in her pocket and carried them home. She climbed the stairs to her bedroom and put them carefully on her dressing table, along with all the other precious finds from Perran Sands, she would wear the teeth on special occasions but for now, she needed a rest. Merin lay down beneath her blankets and fell straight to sleep. She slept all afternoon, she slept into the night, deep into the night when she was woken by a voice calling,

Give me back my teeth, give me my teeth!’

She rolled over and tried to go back to sleep but there was the sound of the catch on the window opening and something was squeezing itself in,

Give me back my teeth!’

It was pitch dark in Merin’s room, there was no moon. She could hear the sea crashing in and the wind had picked up. She stared very hard into the blackness. She slid her hand over the dressing table until she found the teeth and then threw them at the open window.

Take your teeth,’ said Merin crossly.

She heard the window squeaking as it opened, she heard footsteps retreating down the road.


retold by Anna Chorltin

source  Robert Hunt  'Popular Romances from the West of England'


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