The Crimson Fairy Book - online children's book

A Classic fairy tale collection for children by Andrew Lang

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vanished completely, leaving only the points of their tails, which you can see for yourself.'
'You have made up that story very well,' replied the herdsman.
'No, it is the real truth; come with me and I'll prove it.' And they went together to the spot, and there sure enough were the points of the tails sticking up out of the water. The herdsman laid hold of the nearest, and pulled at it with all his might, but it was no use, for the stone and the rope held them all fast. He called to the young man to help him, but the two did not succeed any better than the one had done.
'Yes, your story was true after all; it is a wonderful thing,' said the herdsman. 'But I see it is no fault of yours. and I must put up with my loss as well as I can. Now let us return home, for it is time for supper.
Next morning the herdsman said to the young man: 'I have got some other work for you to do. To-day you must take a hundred sheep to graze; but be careful that no harm befalls them.'
'I will do my best,' replied the youth. And he opened the gate of the fold, where the sheep had been all night, and drove them out into the meadow. But in a short time they grew as wild as the pigs had done, and scattered in all directions. The young man could not collect them, try as he would, and he thought to himself that this was the punishment for his laziness in refusing to look after his father's one cow.
At last, however, the sheep seemed tired of running about, and then the youth managed to gather them together, and drove them, as before, straight to his father's house.
'Whose sheep are these, and what are they doing here?' asked the old man in wonder, and his son told him. But when the tale was ended the father shook his head.
'Give up these bad ways and take them back to your master,' said he.
'No, no,' answered the youth; 'I am not so stupid as that! We will kill them and have them for dinner.'
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