Once upon a time, Etwas The Elf was running through the forests of tall grass, under the canopies of clover and around the stems of tall flowers when a grainy, creamy aroma wafted under her nose. Always ready for adventure, she set out to find the source of the scent. "Nammi!" she cried, calculating the breeze's speed and direction from the top of a lupine stem.
She set out over the top of a small hummock and around the next one. She came to a mound of horse leavings and she climbed it and sniffed until she, once again, caught the magical smell. Down she tumbled and under the bottom strand of a barbed wire fence. Soon she came upon a stretch of bare, black gravel which she crossed to the big red house on the other side. From here she could tell the smell came from cow's milk and ground oats. "A perfect combination!" she explained to the spider waiting for her in its web under the bottom board of the big red house. "No wonder the horses around here are so well fed!"
She looked above her and far, far above could see a shelf protruding from the side of the house. She looked left and right for a way up. She could see a fly buzzing around the shelf, enjoying at close range the aroma she'd traveled so far to investigate. The garden hose only reached halfway to the shelf and was too far to one side. The boards were newly painted and so she thought she could climb straight up the side. Looking down at her green shirt and green pants and green shoes she took off her green, pointy hat. "By the time I reach the shelf, I'll look like Christmas!"
Elves are very respectful of tradition and trademark so she paused. "Howdy, Miss Spider," she said, "can I use your web?"
"Make yourself comfortable," the spider answered."
So Etwas took out her tiny knife and sawed away strand after strand of the web, weaving them into a rope and tying it into a lariat. She waited until the fly dove in towards the shelf and she whipped the lasso high into the air, catching it around the fly's body. The fly noted the tug but the weight wasn't much so it sdarted down into the bowl.
Soon Etwas was standing behind it, looking down from the rim of a ceramic bowl into a steamy bowl of porridge. Just above the oaty, creamy layer of solgryn, the fly danced and hopped and flew touching the buffet lightly before darting back into the air. The woven web fluttered and curled behind it.
"Howdy, Mrs. Fly!" said Etwas, politely.
"Hello, Etwas," answered the fly.
"Why do you dance over this porridge?"
"It is very hot and very delicious! So I take a bite and rise up to cool. You see, our wings give us the power to regulate our temperatire in just this way. When the bowl is cool, I will cover it with eggs. We are very clever about temperature."
Etwas grinned and dove from the side of the bowl into the grain. She emerged and spat a mouthful at Mrs. Fly. The porridge on her clothes made her look like the flag of Persia, but elves and genies did not formally recognize one another.
The fly was astonished until Etwas explained that elves live where lava flows and have a high tolerance for heat. Then a giant hand reached through a window behind the shelf and grabbed the bowl and tilted it towards a bearded face with an open mouth. At the same time, Miss spider appeared on the ledge having followed Etwas' path and found the fly already wrapped. Etwas barely escaped consumption by leaping onto the nose of the bearded human, onto the eyeglasses and into the graying red hair where despite her caution, she looked for all the world like Christmas.
Below her, the fly, she saw, was less fortunate. "It is important to adapt," thought Etwas, "whether by developing ability, cleverness, endurance, agility or single-minded malice in that order."