THE GARDENER AND THE FAMILY 1061
But they were not proud of it! They felt that they were the owners, they could give Larsen his dismissal; but they did not do that, they were good people, and there are so many good people of their class, that it is a good thing for every Larsen.
Yes, that is the story of ' The Gardener and the Family.' Now you can think it over !
THE FLEA AND THE PROFESSOR
Once upon a time there was a balloonist with whom things went badly; the balloon burst, and the man came down and was dashed to pieces. He had sent his boy down with the parachute two minutes before : that was lucky for the boy. He was unhurt, and went about with great abilities for becoming a balloonist, but he had no balloon, and no means of getting one.
Live he must, and so he laid himself out to acquire the art of legerdemain, and to be able to talk with his stomach, which is called being a ventriloquist.
He was young and good-looking, and when he got a moustache, and was dressed in good clothes, ho might have been taken for a nobleman's son. The ladies thought him beautiful: one young lady was so enchanted with his beauty and his cleverness, that she accompanied him to strange towns and countries; there he called himself Professor ; less it could not be.
His constant thought was to get a balloon and fly in the air with his little wife, but as yet they had not the means.
' They will come,' said he.
1 If only they would,' said she.
1 We are young people ! and now I am a Professor. Even crumbs are bread ! '
She helped him faithfully, sat by the door and sold tickets for the performance, and that was a cold entertainment in winter. She helped him also in one trick. He put his wife in a table-drawer, a big table-drawer ; she crept into the back drawer, and so was not to be seen from the front; it was like an optical illusion.