burden [baxdn] n.
A burden is a serious or difficult responsibility.
—►Children who do not behave are a burden to their parents.
compromise [kdmpramaiz] v.
To compromise is to agree to something that is not exactly what you want.
-* We both compromised about the game we decided to play.
Craft [kraeft] v.
To craft something is to make it using skill.
—►She crafted the bookcase out of solid pine wood and then painted it.
CrOOk [kruk] n.
A crook is someone who is not honest or who commits crimes.
—*The manager was arrested by the police for being a crook.
currency [ka:ransi] n.
Currency is the form of money used in a certain place.
—►Elizabeth had to exchange her dollars for foreign currency.
e n ig m a [intgma] n.
An enigma is someone or something that is mysterious or hard to understand.
-* The theft of the paintings is an enigma to the investigators.
fragile [fraedsal] adj.
When people or things are fragile, they are not strong and can be damaged easily.
—►The fragile glassware was carefully packed into boxes.
hybrid [haibrid] n.
A hybrid is a mixture of different things or styles.
-» In Greek mythology, a centaur is a hybrid of a man and a horse.
innocence [inasns] n.
Innocence is a lack of experience of difficult or complex things in life.
-+ Everyone who met her found her innocence to be charming.
m e r g e [mard3 ] v.
To merge two things is to combine them into one whole thing.
-> The storm clouds merged into one large menacing cloud that filled the sky.moderate [madereit] adj.
When something is moderate, it is not too big or too small in size or amount.
—*It takes a moderate amount of patience to be around small children all day.
overwhelm [duvar/iwelm] V.
To overwhelm is to exist in such a large amount that someone cannot deal with it.
—»The amount of homework her teacher assigned has overwhelmed her.
perception [parsepjan] n.
A perception of a situation is a way of thinking about it or understanding it.
—*Since he couldn’t see, his perception of life was much different than mine.
reunion [ri:ju:njan] n.
A reunion is the meeting of people or things that have been separated.
-» Every summer we have a family reunion at the lake.
rig [rig] v.
To rig something means to dishonestly arrange it.
—►The bad politician rigged the election so that he would win.
shiver [JTva:r] n.
A shiver is a shaking movement the body makes when someone is cold or scared.
-♦ I got shivers on my way home because it was so cold.
sociable [soujabsl] adj.
When someone is sociable, they are friendly.
—►Many of my good friends are sociable, but I am shy.
talkative [tdikativ] adj.
When someone is talkative, they talk a lot.
—>My aunt is very talkative whenever she is on the phone.
tow [tou] v.
To tow something is to pull it.
—►The truck was towing a trailer behind it.
tramp [traemp] v.
To tramp is to put your feet down in a loud, heavy way as you walk.
-* The baby tramped across the floor as he was learning to walk.
The Demon’s Bridge
A young woman’s cow had crossed the river in the morning when the water level was
moderate. But when the woman returned with her dog to get the cow, she was overwhelmed
by how high the water had risen. Even if she crossed, she still couldn’t tow her cow back
through the river.
“What am I going to do?” she wondered.
Suddenly, a man appeared across the river. “A fragile young lady like you shouldn’t have
to struggle across a river,” he said. “I’ll build you a bridge.”
The man was an enigma. The young woman’s perception of him was that he was a sociable
person. He was talkative, yet something was strange about him.
“I don’t want to be a burden to you, sir,” the woman replied.
“Don’t worry,” he told her as he began crafting a bridge. He merged the pieces of the bridge
together with amazing speed. Soon, it was finished.
“Oh, but how can I pay you for your work? Let’s compromise. I am sure that we can find a
fair solution. What do you think?” The woman asked.
“The only currency I need is the first living thing that crosses the bridge,” the man replied.
She thought, “This deal sounds weird. Maybe he’s actually a river demon.” She shivered
because she realized that he had taken advantage of her innocence and rigged the deal
somehow. But she had a plan of her own. She pulled a piece of bread from her pocket and
threw it across the bridge. Her dog ran after it.
“The dog is the first living thing across the bridge,” she said to the man.
The man was angry. He suddenly changed into a hybrid of a human and a fish. “You crook!”
he shouted. “You tricked me. I have no use for your dog!” He screamed and dove into the river.
The woman tramped across the bridge to the other side and had a happy reunion with
her dog and cow.