The Complete Fairy Tales & Other Stories
By Hans Christian Andersen - online book

Oxford Complete Illustrated Edition all his stories written between 1835 and 1872.

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480                   FIVE OUT OF ONE POD
And weeks went by. The peas became yellow, and the pod also.
1 All the world 's turning yellow,' said they; and they had a right to say it.
Suddenly they felt a tug at the pod. It was torn off, passed through human hands, and glided down into the pocket of a jacket, in company with other full pods.
' Now we shall soon be opened ! ' they said ; and that is just what they were waiting for.
' I should like to know who of us will get farthest! ' said the smallest of the five. ' Yes, now it will soon show itself.'
' What is to be will be,' said the biggest.
' Crack ! ' the pod burst, and all the five peas rolled out into the bright sunshine. There they lay in a child's hand. A little boy was clutching them, and said they were fine peas for his pea-shooter ; and he put one in at once and shot it out.
* Now I'm flying out into the wide world, catch me if you can ! ' And he was gone.
' I,' said the second, * I shall fly straight into the sun. That's a pod worth looking at, and one that exactly suits me.' And away he went.
' We sleep where we come,' said the two next, ' but we shall roll on all the same.' And so they rolled first on the floor before they got into the pea-shooter ; but they were put in for all that. ' We shall go farthest,' said they.
' What is to happen will happen,' said the last, as he was shot forth out of the pea-shooter ; and he flew up against the old board under the garret window, just into a crack which was filled up with moss and soft mould; and the moss closed round him ; there he lay, a prisoner indeed, but not forgotten by our Lord.
1 What is to happen will happen,' said he.
Within, in the little garret, lived a poor woman, who went out in the day to clean stoves, saw wood, and to do other hard work of the same kind, for she was strong and industrious too. But she always remained poor ; and at home in the garret lay her half-grown only daughter, who was very delicate and weak; for a whole year she had kept her bed, and it seemed as if she could neither live nor die.