Изображения страниц

Now, whilst all this was going on, the Giant, who had been drinking much wine, was fast asleep in a remote part of the castle. No sooner had Strong-arm finished the Dragon, than up strutted the funny little boy who first opened the door, grinning and laughing as before, and he said, "Your servant, sir. I know who and what you want," at the same time leading Strong-arm round to another part of the court-yard, where he


saw his poor father, who immediately sprang to his feet and embraced his son. He said he was a dear, good, and dutiful boy to encounter so much danger for him; but, alas! how was he to escape? for he was chained to the door: Then Strong-arm called up his brothers, and when they had embraced their father, they soon broke the chain and set him free; so they all started off in the greatest joy for home.

I must return to the little old woman. She, after her sons

had gone away, gave way to the most bitter grief for having let them go-perhaps to share the same cruel fate as her husband. While in this state, an old Witch came up to her,


and on the old lady telling her the cause of her sorrow, she said she would help her-that the Giant was an enemy of hers, and she would not only see that the good sons prospered, but that the Giant should meet with such punishment as his wicked ways deserved. Then the Witch took the little old lady upon her broom, and they sailed off through the air, straight for the Giant's castle.

On their way the Witch related how the Giant and she hated each other; that she had great power, and wished to


kill the Giant. To carry out her design, she had begun by afflicting him with corns and tender feet. Now, when the Giant awoke from his sleep, he was in such pain that he could bear it no longer, so he thought he would go in search of his missing Shoe, which, like the other one he had in his castle, was easy and large for his foot. When he came to the spot where the old lady and her children lived, he saw his old


Shoe, and, with

a laugh that shook the trees, he thrust his foot into it, breaking through

the trap door at the top!

The children, in great alarm, rushed about inside the Shoe, and, in great fear

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »