THE VIZIR WHO WAS PUNISHED 47
' Sir,' answered the Sultan, ' I am sure you have a good reason for not doing so, and having heard your cry of distress, I am come to offer you my help. Whose is this palace, and why is it thus empty ? '
Instead of answering the young man lifted up his robe, and showed the Sultan that, from the waist downwards, he was a block of black marble.
The Sultan was horrified, and begged the young man to tell him his story.
' Willingly I will tell you my sad history,' said the young man.