A New Horse is a scary story for kids. It is based on a folk tale called “Bridling The Witch” from Up Cutshin and Down Greasy by Leonard Roberts. A version of this story appeared in Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz.
There were two young men who worked together on a farm. They also shared a room. One slept at the back and the other slept near the door. As time went on, the young man who slept near the door began to look pale, thin and sickly. He was always extremely tired and was barely able to do his work. His friend asked what was wrong.
“If you went though what I go through every night, you’d look bad too” he said. “A witch turns me into a horse and rides me all over the countryside.”
“Let me sleep in your bed tonight,” said his friend. “Then we’ll see what happens.”
That night, the friend lay down in the bed near the door and went to sleep. Around midnight, an old woman came into the room. She stood over the friend and mumbled some strange words over him. His eyes were open, but he couldn’t move a muscle. Then, she slipped a bridle on him and before he knew what was happening, she had turned him into a horse.
The next thing he knew, she was riding him across the fields at breakneck speed, beating and whipping him to make him go faster. Soon they came to an old house where there was a party going on. There was a lot of music and dancing and everyone seemed to be having a great time. The old woman hitched him to a fence and went inside.
While she was gone, the farmhand rubbed against the fence until finally, the bridle came off and he turned back into a human being. Then he grabbed the bridle and went into the house. When he found the old witch, he spoke those same strange words over her that she said over him. He slipped the bridle over her and turned her into a horse. Then, he jumped up on her back and rode off on her.
He rode her to a blacksmith and had her fitted with horseshoes. After that, he rode her to the farm where she lived with her husband.
“I have a pretty good horse here,” he told her husband, “but I need a stronger one. Would you like to trade?”
The old man looked her over and agreed to the trade. So they picked out another horse, and the farmhand rose away. Her husband led his new horse to the barn. He took the bridle off and went to hang it up. But when he came back, the new horse was gone.
Instead, there stood his wife with horseshoes nailed to her hands and feet. He took his gun and shot her brains out and that was the last anyone saw of the witch.