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Page:The Pentamerone, or The Story of Stories.djvu/189

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THE SERPENT.

jays, flycatchers, little owls, goldfinches, bullfinches, chaffinches and redbreasts that were on the trees. And when he had killed them all, they put the blood into a little bottle which the fox carried with him to refresh himself on the road.

Grannonia was so overjoyed that she hardly touched the ground; but the fox said to her, "What fine joy in a dream is this, my daughter! you have done nothing unless you have my blood also to mix with that of the birds;" and so saying he set off running away. Grannonia, who saw all her hopes destroyed, had recourse to women's art, cunning and flattery; and she said to him, "Gossip fox, there would be some reason for your saving your hide if I were not under so many obligations to you, and if there were no other foxes in the world; but as you know how much I owe you, and know also that there is no scarcity of the like of you in these plains, you may rely on my good faith. So don't act like the cow that kicks down the pad when she has just filled it with milk. You have done the chief part, and now you fail at the best. Do stop; believe me, and come with me to the city of this king, where you may sell me for a slave if you will."

The fox, who never dreamed that the quintessence of foxery was to be met with, found himself out-foxed by a woman. So he agreed to travel on with Gran-