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Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 4, 1893.djvu/340

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332
Székely Tales.

All at once the road branched off in two directions; the one leading to a huge great wood, the other to a large city. He considered which he should take. It would be well to go into the tow^n and pass the night there, but he had not a single stray kreuzer. He therefore went towards the wood, thinking that he can at least make a fire there, perhaps, too, he will be able to catch a bird, then he will gather strawberries and mushrooms, and have such a supper that the king himself can't do better.

He went into the wood, therefore, and there chose out a great tree, under which he sat down. He takes out his watch to see what o'clock it is, then that invisible being, or something, speaks again, and asks him, "What are your commands, my soul, my dear good master?"

Thus answered the prince: Well, if you want me to give commands, then make me something to eat, and out of the ground too."

Scarcely had the prince looked round when there before him stood a table spread with all sorts of good dainty dishes. The little prince fell to manfully; then he lay down in the soft grass, and did not get up till the sun shone on his stomach.

He started off again and went strolling on until he came to such a great high mountain that it was impossible to see either the end, or the length, or the top of it He looked right, he looked left, he looked up, he went round about, this way and that, but he could not find any means of getting over it in any way, it was so lofty and so steep. But he looked and looked about until he found a hole which led into the mountain. He entered this hole, but he had hardly gone the distance of a good gun-shot when he got into such intense darkness that he could not move either backwards or forwards. He puts his hand in his pocket to get a match, and while he was feeling for a match the watch touched his hand, and he took it out.

"What are your commands, my soul, my dear good master?" asked the genius again.