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Page:The Pentamerone, or The Story of Stories.djvu/258

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THE PENTAMERONE.

way up her legs, and a neat and pretty little shoe with a single sole. Then they placed themselves shoulder to shoulder; and as soon as the tarantara and too-too of the trumpets was heard, off they darted, running at such a rate that their heels touched their shoulders, and in truth they seemed just like hares with the greyhounds after them, horses broken loose from the stable, dogs with kettles tied to their tails, or jackasses with furze-bushes behind them. But Lightning (as he was both by name and nature) left the princess more than a handsbreadth behind him, and came first to the goal. Then you should have heard the huzzaing and shouting, the cries and the uproar, the whistling and clapping of hands of all the people, bawling out, "Hurra! Long life to the stranger!" Whereat Ciannetella's face turned as red as a schoolboy's who is going to be whipped, and she stood lost in shame and confusion at seeing herself vanquished. But as there were to be two heats to the race, she fell to planning how to be revenged for this affront; and going home, she put a charm into a ring, of such power, that if any one had it upon his finger, his legs would totter so that he would not be able to walk, much less to run; then she sent it as a present to Lightning; begging him to wear it on his finger for love of her.

Quickear, who heard this trick plotted between the father and daughter, said nothing, and waited to see the