The Crimson Fairy Book - online children's book

A Classic fairy tale collection for children by Andrew Lang

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Simon? He will steal the fair maiden fast enough, and then the king, her father, may consider how he is going to bring his army over here--it will take him ten years to do it!---no less! What do you think of my plan?'
'What do I think? Why, that your idea is capital, and you shall be rewarded for it. Come, guards, hurry as fast as you can and bring the seventh Simon before me.'
Not many minutes later, Simon the seventh stood before the king, who explained to him what he wished done, and also that to steal for the benefit of his king and country was by no means a wrong thing, though it was very wrong to steal for his own advantage.
The youngest Simon, who looked very pale and hungry, only nodded his head.
'Come,' said the king, 'tell me truly. Do you think you could steal the Princess Helena?'
'Why should I not steal her, sire? The thing is easy enough. Let my brother's ship be laden with rich stuffs, brocades, Persian carpets, pearls and jewels. Send me in the ship. Give me my four middle brothers as companions, and keep the two others as hostages.'
When the king heard these words his heart became filled with longing, and he ordered all to be done as Simon wished. Every one ran about to do his bidding; and in next to no time the wonder-ship was laden and ready to start.
The five Simons took leave of the king, went on board, and had no sooner set sail than they were almost out of sight. The ship cut through the waters like a falcon through the air, and just a week after starting sighted the Island of Busan. The coast appeared to be strongly guarded, and from afar the watchman on a high tower called out: 'Halt and anchor! Who are you? Where do you come from, and what do you want?'
The seventh Simon answered from the ship: 'We are peaceful people. We come from the country of the great and good King Archidej, and we bring foreign wares--rich brocades, carpets, and costly jewels, which we wish to show to your king and the princess. We desire to trade--to sell, to buy, and to exchange.'
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