It was her own fault when Mrs Rutterkin’s house burned to the ground. That might sound harsh, but Mrs Rutterkin was one of those horrible witches like in fairy stories. She would grab children on Dukesbury Avenue where she lived, put them in a huge pot over the fire place, and boil them down for cat food. This is if she wasn’t using the cauldron for making some sort of malevolent potion. There wasn’t a lizard’s tail within miles of where she lived. Nor a frog’s tongue.
Clearly the house had caught on fire when one of the children leapt out of the cauldron and chased Mrs Rutterkin with a blazing log. The child tripped and the rest is history. But that’s not the end of this strange tale. Fortunately the child was saved, as indeed was Mrs Rutterkin. Unfortunately the child’s parents were held responsible for the conflagration. They had to pay Mrs Rutterkin huge amounts of money in compensation and the child was taken away and put in responsible foster care.
The witch has rebuilt her house. She still nabs children off the street for cat food, but her open fireplace has gone. Her hearth is now closed in – more like a pizza oven. There’s very little likelihood that a destructive fire could start. It’s also unlikely that a child would escape. The new arrangement is eco-friendly; in fact, the city council are using Mrs Rutterkin’s modernizing experience as a promotion.
“She’s straight off the news on television,” said Mrs Martin from 14 Dukesbury Avenue.
“Truth is indeed stranger than fiction,” said Mr Martin from the same address.