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Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 8, 1897.djvu/255

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Ghost Lights of the West Highlands. 231

family. One day in the course of the year a man called at the smith's house and was hospitably treated. When he was leaving, he said to the smith that if he would desire any three things, he would grant them to him. The smith ac- cepted his offer, and said he would like the three following things :

1ST. — That if anyone would agree to help him with any work in the smiddy, he might have the power to keep him at the anvil as long as he chose.

2ND. — That should he ask anyone to sit on a chair, he might have the power to fasten the chair to the ground, and the person to the chair, and to keep him there as long as he chose.

3RD. — That if he put a piece of money in his pocket, it might remain there till he chose to take it out.

The stranger said he might have his three wishes, but added that it was a pity he had not asked mercy for his soul. By-and-by the end of the year came round, and the little old man appeared as before, and, reminding the smith of the agreement, asked him if he was ready to come with him now. The smith replied he was, except one or two things he would like to finish before leaving, if he might be allowed the time, and suggested that he would be very quick if the little man would help him. The man consented, and when the smith got him in front of the anvil he wished his first wish, and the man was fixed before the anvil with the hammer in his hands, and not able to move. The smith kept him in this position until he promised to leave him on the same conditions for another year. Terms having been agreed, the old fellow^ was released and away he went ; the smith continued as before, enjoying plenty, and did not again see the little old man till that year's end.

Exactly at the year's end, however, the man appeared again, determined to have the smith with him. Having gone into the house where the smith was at the time, he asked him if he was ready to come away now. The smith