The Blue Fairy Book - online childrens book

Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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burn, and I saw a fairy, whom I had known as long as I could remember, and whose ugliness had always horrified me. She was leaning upon the arm of a most beautiful young girl, who wore chains of gold on her wrists and was evidently her slave.
'"Why, Ragotte," I said, for that was the fairy's name, " what is the meaning of all this ? Is it by your orders that I am here ? "
'" And whose fault is it," she answered, "that you have never under­stood me until now ? Must a powerful fairy like myself condescend to explain her doings to you who are no better than an ant by comparison, though you think yourself a great king?"
'" Call me what you like," I said impatiently; "but what is it that you want—my crown, or my cities, or my treasures ? "
'" Treasures ! " said the fairy, disdainfully. " If I chose I could make any one of my scullicns richer and more powerful than you. I do not want your treasures, but," she added softly, " if you will give me your heart—if you will marry me—I will add twenty kingdoms to the one you have already; you shall have a hundred castles full of gold and five hundred full of silver, and, in short, anything you like to ask me for."
"' Madam Ragotte," said I, " when one is at the bottom of a pit where one has fully expected to be roasted alive, it is impossible to think of asking such a charming person as you are to marry one ! I beg that you will set me at liberty, and then I shall hope to answer you fittingly."
'" Ah! " said she, " if you loved me really you would not care
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