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Page:Tales of old Lusitania.djvu/163

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147
THE MAGICIAN'S SERVANT.

a fine horse I shall be! You must sell me at a high price, but be careful to keep the bridle, and do not sell it on any account."

The father went to the fair with his son changed into a horse, and whom should he meet at the fair but the lad's master, the magician, who recognised his servant in the disguised horse, and being determined to be the possessor, he offered to give any sum of money he might ask for it, but when the father refused to let the magician have the bridle with the horse, a dispute arose in which those present took the part of the purchaser, for, as they said, the bridle was included in the bargain. The poor father, being pressed by the crowds to give up the bridle, at last consented to let the magician have it.

The magician now gave the horse to a groom to take home, and cautioned him, as he pointed to a fountain at a short distance, not to let the horse approach it, threatening to kill him if he did so. As the groom went along with the horse, everyone that passed it praised its symmetry and beautiful shape; and seeing that the horse was not allowed to approach the fountain, though it made frantic efforts to do so, and to drink the water, all the bystanders appealed to the groom to let the beautiful horse drink, as it would be cruel to deprive it of water on such a hot day. The horse, however, taking advantage of a moment when the groom's attention was diverted from him,