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The Pink.By The Brothers Grimm.

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Then he set out on his journey, and the Poodle was made to run alongside till the Prince reached his own country. Arrived there, he went straight to the tower where his mother was imprisoned, and as the tower was so high he wished for a ladder to reach the top. Then he climbed up, looked in, and cried, 'Dearest mother, lady Queen, are you still alive?' She, thinking it was the Angels who brought her food come back, said, 'I have just eaten; I do not want anything more.' Then he said, 'I am your own dear son whom the wild animals were supposed to have devoured; but I am still alive, and I shall soon come and rescue you.' Then he got down and went to his father. He had himself announced as a strange Huntsman, anxious to take service with the King, who said, 'Yes; if he was skilled in game preserving, and could procure plenty of venison, he would engage him. But there had never before been any game in the whole district.'

The Huntsman promised to procure as much game as the King could possibly require for the royal table. Then he called the whole Hunt together, and ordered them all to come into the forest with him. He caused a great circle to be enclosed, with only one outlet; then he took his place in the middle, and began to wish as hard as he could. Immediately over two hundred head of game came running into the enclosure; these the Huntsmen had to shoot, and then they were piled on to sixty country wagons, and driven home to the King. So for once he was able to load his board with game, after having had none for many years. The King was much pleased, and commanded his whole court to a banquet on the following day. When they were all assembled, he said to the Huntsman, 'You shall sit by me as you are so clever.' He answered, 'My lord and King, may it please your Majesty, I am only a poor Huntsman!' The King, however, insisted, and said, 'I command you to sit by me.'

As he sat there, his thoughts wandered to his dear mother, and he wished one of the courtiers would speak of her. Hardly had he wished it than the Lord High Marshal said-- 'Your Majesty, we are all rejoicing here, how fares it with Her Majesty the Queen? Is she still alive in the tower, or has she perished?' But the King answered, 'She allowed my beloved son to be devoured by wild animals, and I do not wish to hear anything about her.' Then the Huntsman stood up and said-- 'Gracious father, she is still alive, and I am her son. He was not devoured by wild animals; he was taken away by the scoundrel of a Cook. He stole me while my mother was asleep, and sprinkled her garments with the blood of a chicken.' Then he brought up the black Poodle with the golden chain, and said, 'This is the villain.' He ordered some live coals to be brought, which he made the dog eat in the sight of all the people till the flames poured out of his mouth. Then he asked the King if he would like to see the Cook in his true shape, and wished him back, and there he stood in his white apron, with his knife at his side.

The King was furious when he saw him, and ordered him to be thrown into the deepest dungeon. Then the Huntsman said further-- 'My father would you like to see the Maiden who so tenderly saved my life when she was ordered to kill me, although by so doing she might have lost her own life?' The King answered, 'Yes, I will gladly see her.' Then his son said, 'Gracious father, I will show her to you first in the guise of a beautiful flower.' He put his hand into his pocket, and brought out the Pink. It was a finer one than the King had ever seen before. Then his son said, 'Now, I will show her to you in her true form.' The moment his wish was uttered, she stood before them in all her beauty, which was greater than any artist could paint. The King sent ladies and gentlemen-in-waiting to the tower to bring the Queen back to his royal table. But when they reached the tower they found that she would no longer eat or drink, and she said, 'The merciful God, who has preserved my life so long, will soon release me now.' Three days after she died. At her burial the two white Doves which had brought her food during her captivity, followed and hovered over her grave. The old King caused the wicked Cook to be torn into four quarters; but his own heart was filled with grief and remorse, and he died soon after. His son married the beautiful Maiden he had brought home with him as a Flower, and, for all I know, they may be living still.


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