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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which is shut in by a high dyke. But to-day there is sunshine. Our Lord's lovely warm sun is inside ; it comes from the south, through the new window, where there was only a wall before.
The invalid sits in the warm sunshine, sees the wood and shore ; the world has become so big and so lovely, and that at a single word from the kind lady up at the house.
1 The word was so easy, the service so small,' says she,
* and the joy I gained was unspeakably great and blessed 1'
And so she does many good deeds, thinks of all the poor people in the cottages, and in the rich houses, where there are also afflicted ones. It is concealed and hidden, but it is not forgotten by our Lord.
There was another old house ; it was in the great busy town. In the house were rooms and halls ; but we will not go into them ; we will stay in the kitchen, it is snug and bright there, it is clean and neat. The copper things shine, the table looks polished, the sink is like a newly-scrubbed larding-board. It has all been done by one maid-of-all-work, and yet she has had time to dress herself as if she were going to church. She has ribbons in her cap—black ribbons—that means mourning. Yet she has no one to mourn for, neither father nor mother, neither relative nor sweetheart; she is a poor girl. Once she was engaged to a poor young fellow ; they thought much of each other. One day he came to her. ' We two have nothing ! ' said he, ' and the rich widow downstairs has spoken warm words to me ; she will put me into a good position, but you are in my heart. What do you advise me to do ? '
' Whatever you think is for your happiness ! ' said the girl. ' Be good and kind to her, but remember, that from the moment we part, we two cannot see each other again !'
And so some years passed ; then she met her former friend and sweetheart on the street; he looked ill and miserable ; then she could not forbear, she must ask,
* How are you getting on ? '
1 Very well in every way,' said he. ' My wife is honest and good, but you are in my heart. I have fought my fight; it will soon be finished ! We shall not see each