The BROWN FAIRY BOOK - online childrens book

A Collection of Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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The girl had never heard of such a name, and did not like it, so she determined to pay no attention ; but as she opened her mouth to tell her father that her husband must be called Njal, she found herself answering instead : 'If I do marry it will be to no one except Habogi.'
' Who is Habogi ?' asked her father and sisters ; ' We never heard of such a person.'
' All I can tell you is that he will be my husband, if ever I have one,' returned Helga ; and that was all she would say.
Before very long the young men who lived in the neighbouring villages or on the sides of the mountains, had heard of this talk of the three girls, and Sigmunds and Sigurds in scores came to visit the little cottage. There were other young men too, who bore different names, though not one of them was called ' Habogi,' and these thought that they might perhaps gain the heart of the youngest. But though there was more than one ' Njal' amongst them, Helga's eyes seemed always turned another way.
At length the two elder sisters made their choice from out of the Sigurds and the Sigmunds, and it wras decided that both weddings should take place at the same time. Invitations were sent out to the friends and relations, and when, on the morning of the great day, they were all assembled, a rough, coarse old peasant left the crowd and came up to the brides' father.
' My name is Habogi, and Helga must be my wife,' was all he said. And though Helga stood pale and trembling with surprise, she did not try to run away.
' I cannot talk of such things just now,' answered the father, who could not bear the thought of giving his favourite daughter to this horrible old man, and hoped, by putting it off, that something might happen. But the sisters, who had always been rather jealous of Helga, were secretly pleased that their bridegrooms should out­shine hers.
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