652 WALDEMAR DAA AND HIS DAUGHTERS
1 He was quite dizzy—I could have blown him down/ said the Wind ; ' but t only fanned the glowing coals, and accompanied him through the door to where his daughters sat shivering. His coat was powdered with ashes, and there were ashes in his beard and in his tangled hair. He stood straight up, and held his costly treasure on high, in the brittle glass. " Found, found !—Gold, gold ! " he shouted, and again held aloft the glass to let it flash in the sunshine ; but his hand trembled, and the alchemic glass fell clattering to the ground, and broke into a thousand pieces ; and the last bubble of his happiness had burst! Hu-uh-ush ! rushing away !—and I rushed away from the gold-maker's house.
1 Late in autumn, when the days are short, and the mist comes and strews cold drops upon the berries and leafless branches, I came back in fresh spirits, rushed through the air, swept the sky clear, and snapped the dry twigs— which is certainly no great labour, but yet it must be done. Then there was another kind of sweeping clean at Waldemar Daa's, in the mansion of Borreby. His enemy, Ove Ramel, of Basnas, was there with the mortgage of the house and everything it contained in his pocket. I drummed against the broken window-panes, beat against the old rotten doors, and whistled through cracks and rifts —huh-sh ! Ove Ramel was not to be encouraged to stay there. Ida and Anna Dorothea wept bitterly ; Joanna stood pale and proud, and bit her thumb till it bled—but what could that avail ? Ove Ramel offered to allow Waldemar Daa to remain in the mansion till the end of his life, but no thanks were given him for his offer. I listened to hear what occurred. I saw the ruined gentleman lift his head and throw it back prouder than ever, and I rushed against the house and the old lime trees with such force, that one of the thickest branches broke, one that was not decayed ; and the branch remained lying at the entrance as a broom when any one wanted to sweep the place out: and a grand sweeping out there was—I thought it would be so.
* It was hard on that day to preserve one's composure ; but their will was as hard as their fortune.