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Page:The Pentamerone, or The Story of Stories.djvu/83

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THE PLEA.

is at our heels!” As soon as Petrullo heard this, he took a sip of water from a little fountain that was spurting out of a stone basin, squirted it on the ground, and in the twinkling of an eye a large river rose up on the spot. When the ogre saw this new obstacle, and that he could not make holes as fast as they found bungs to stop them, he stripped himself stark naked, and swam across to the other side of the river with his clothes upon his head.

Mase, who put his ear to every chink, heard the ogre coming, and exclaimed, "Alas! matters go ill with us now; I already hear the clatter of the ogre’s heels: Heaven help us! So let us be upon our guard, and prepare to meet this storm, or else we are done for."

"Never fear," said Ascaddeo, "I will soon settle this ugly ragamuffin." So saying he flung a pebble on the ground, and instantly up rose a tower, in which they all took refuge without delay and barred the door. But when the ogre came up, and saw that they had betaken themselves to a place of safety, he ran home, got a vine-dresser’s ladder, and hied with it on his shoulder back to the tower.

Now Mase, who kept his ears hanging down, heard at a distance the approach of the ogre, and cried, We are now at the butt-end of the candle of hope! Ceccone is our last resource, for the ogre is coming back in a