Fox in Inaba

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Historical Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

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Once upon a time, there was a playful fox cub. One day, when children were hunting fireflies, the fox turned itself into a firefly and played trick on them. But, one of the children had a big net
for fishing. The fox ran away, but the child swung the net onto the fox..

Fox in Inaba  - Legends of a seaside town in Japan,  series Vol.6


This is a story from T-town, a small town near the Sea of Japan.


Once upon a time, a small fox cub lived in the remote mountain of Inaba behind T town. People called it Inaba kozo (Inaba child or Inaba tyke). As the name suggested, it was a fox cub, but with genius wisdom, and often played tricks on people. Meanwhile,  it also made a ridiculous mistake from time to time, and sometimes it seemed likely to lose its life.


It was a hot summer day. Several children were absorbed in firefly hunting. As the fireflies flew far away, the children followed the fireflies and walked along the path, singing in a loud voice.

"Firefly, fireflies, come here"

"The water there is bitter"

"The water here is sweeter"

Inaba Kozo was watching the scene.

"Okay, I will try my ability here."

Suddenly it turned itself into a firefly, and began to dance in midair.

"Wow, that's a big one!"

The children soon found the huge firefly and chased it all together. They were desperate to catch that big firefly with a bamboo branch in their hands.

"Thank God, it’s getting exciting!"

While laughing in his sleeve, Inaba Kozo kept flowing away, dodging their hands.


But he did not know that a child had a big net for scooping up fish. That child swang down the big net on the firefly. Other children were surprised to see it, because it was not a firefly, but a child fox that hung in the net.

"Wow, that is a small fox."

Inaba Kozo, surprised by the noisy voice of the children, rampaged in the net. The child holding the fishing net released it because the small fox was raging so fierce. The fox jumped out and ran away at top speed. Thus, Inaba Kozo barely escaped with his life.


One of the other things that Inaba Kozo was good at was to turn itself into a landscape. In the darkness, it could be turned into a state in which distant houses were lit in reddish lights. Thus, in the evening, the fox surprised people who were on their way home.


One day, after working hard until dark, a farmer began to walk toward the usual direction trying to return home. He could see the bright lights of houses far ahead. But suddenly the scenery disappeared. The farmer was so surprised and looked intently at it. Soon the light appeared in the direction of the left hand where it had been completely dark. When he was inadvertently, it seemed like the road really followed there. But the farmer noticed something doubtful.

"This is strange… Haha, I know, this is Inaba Kozo’s doing. All right, just you wait and see!"

The farmer firmly kept in mind the direction in which he had been advancing, and proceeded in that direction which the fox had made dark. While proceeding and checking his feet, he found the road was indeed continuing.

Inaba Kozi, who knew that the farmer was not deceived, stamped his feet with mortification.

"Hahaha, serves you right! Inaba Kozo"

The farmer said so, and he hurried on the way home. Inaba Kozo, who wanted to somehow annoy the farmer, went about 100 meters ahead and turned himself into a big stone to close the way.

"Hmmm, a big stone in such a place. What's the matter?"

The farmer tilted his head, but immediately realized what it was. He grasped the hoe he was carrying on the back, and suddenly shook a hoe to a big stone and beat it violently.


Inaba kozo jumped and ran away for his life.


Submitted: November 06, 2017

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