Happiness out!Demon in!
Long long ago, there lived a poor farmer and his wife in a village.
Today it was the day of ‘Setubun'(the day before the beginning of Spring, February 3rd).
They were so poor that they had even no beans to drive demons out of the house by scattering them.
“Happiness in, Demon out. Demon out, Happiness in.”
They heard the cheerful voices in their neighborhood.
“I would like to throw beans, too.” said the farmer.
“Me, too. But no beans. Miserable.” said his wife.
“We can do nothing but say.” said the farmer, and stood up with an empty square cup.
“Happiness out, Demon in. Demon in, Happiness out.” said he in desperation.
There stood a red demon and a blue demon hearing it outside of his house, who had been driven out of the house by beans which they didn’t like so much.
“We found the best place to escape to.” said the two misplaced demons and rushed into his house.
“De, De, Demons!” The man and his wife got so surprised that their knees crumbled.
“Don’t be afraid. Wherever we might go, we were driven out by beans. We were at a loss where to go. This house has no bean. Would you house us for a while?”
“No, no, no.” said the farmer, shaking his head.
“So why did you say, ‘Demon in’?” asked one of the demons, staring at him.
“Be, because it’s….,but I have no beds on which you sleep.” said he, shaking himself.
“What is worse, we have no rice to serve you.” said his wife, near tears.”
Hearing this, the red demon smiled at her and said,
“Don’t worry. I’ll give you my tiger pant. You have only to change it for rice at a rice shop.”
He took it off and handed it to her.
She went to a rice shop in a town with the tiger pant.
“What? Is this really the pant of a red demon’s?” said the master, looking at it carefully and touching it for a while.
“Anyway this tiger pant is so wonderful.”
The master exchanged the pant for a basket of rice.
At the night she boiled the rice and they, including the demons, ate it up.
On the next morning, the wife said to the demons,
“We have no rice any more. Wouldn’t you please get out of our house?”
Hearing this, the blue demon smiled at her and said,
“Don’t worry. I’ll give you my bear pant. You have only to change it for rice at a rice shop again.”
He took it off and handed it to her.
She went to the rice shop in a town with the bear pant.
“Is this really the pants of a blue demon’s?” said the master, looking at them carefully and touching them for a while.
“Anyway this bear pants are so wonderful. I am so happy to have two pants of demon’s. They will be my family treasure.”
The master, to his joy, lent a horse and put much rice on it enough for a horse to carry.
She boiled rice for lunch and they, including the demons, ate it up.
But there was much rice left at their house.
She said to herself, “I would like to serve not only rice but also delicious food to the demons for dinner.”
She sold much rice and bought fish, vegetable, Sake and so on.
“Wow. It’s unbelievable.” said the two demons, so much surprised to see a mountain of foods on a table.
“Please help yourself to the dishes and Sake.” said the wife, pouring Sake for the demons.
“We have a gorgeous drinking party tonight. You, two can eat and drink, too.” said the red demon to the couple.
Soon the two demons began to sing and dance, and so did the couple.
On the next morning, the neighborhood was quiet as the festival had already finished.
“Setubun was finished. It’s time to come home in the mountain.” said the red demon.
“We had a few wonderful days here without being thrown beans.” said the blue one.
“If possible, you can stay here as long as you wish to.” said the wife.
“Thanks to you, we could eat and drink until we were full. Would you mind staying here until we have no rice?” said the farmer in farewell.
“I’m sorry we can’t. All you have to do is to change the rice for money. With the money, you can work hard.” said the red demon.
“Even the demon can make poor people happy.” said the blue demon.
After they left the house quietly, the farmer and his wife worked and worked as they were told by the demons.
Soon they were the richest in the village and had happy days for the rest of lives.