The Crimson Fairy Book - online children's book

A Classic fairy tale collection for children by Andrew Lang

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'You have forgotten,' answered the wild duck, 'the proverb that runs, "mountain and mountain can never meet, but one living creature can always come across another."' The boy laughed at this speech and went his way.
He had not wandered far from the shores of the lake, when he noticed a stork standing on one leg, and again he raised his bow and prepared to take aim.
'Do not shoot, I pray you, noble prince,' cried the stork; 'I have two little sons at home; they will die of hunger if I am not there to bring them food.'
Again the prince was filled with pity, and this time also he did not shoot.
'Oh, prince, I will repay your deed of mercy,' cried the stork.
'You poor stork! how can you repay me?' asked the prince.
'You have forgotten,' answered the stork, 'the proverb that runs, "mountain and mountain can never meet, but one living creature can always come across another."'
The boy laughed at hearing these words again, and walked slowly on. He had not gone far, when he fell in with two discharged soldiers.
'Where are you going, little brother?' asked one.
'I am seeking work,' answered the prince.
'So are we,' replied the soldier. 'We can all go together.'
The boy was glad of company and they went on, and on, and on, through seven kingdoms, without finding anything they were able to do. At length they reached a palace, and there was the king standing on the steps.
'You seem to be looking for something,' said he.
'It is work we want,' they all answered.
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