The Crimson Fairy Book - online children's book

A Classic fairy tale collection for children by Andrew Lang

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he began to get over his alarm, and finally slid down the tree again, resolved to get his gun and play some tricks with them.
When he had climbed back to his former position, he took good aim, and waited till one of the giants was just in the act of putting a large piece of meat into his mouth. Bang! went Niels' gun, and the bullet struck the handle of the fork so hard that the point went into the giant's chin, instead of his mouth.
'None of your tricks,' growled the giant to the one who sat next him. 'What do you mean by hitting my fork like that, and making me prick myself?'
'I never touched your fork,' said the other. 'Don't try to get up a quarrel with me.'
'Look at it, then,' said the first. 'Do you suppose I stuck it into my own chin for fun?'
The two got so angry over the matter that each offered to fight the other there and then, but the third giant acted as peace-maker, and they again fell to their eating.
While the quarrel was going on, Niels had loaded the gun again, and just as the second giant was about to put a nice tit-bit into his mouth, bang! went the gun again, and the fork flew into a dozen pieces.
This giant was even more furious than the first had been, and words were just coming to blows, when the third giant again interposed.
'Don't be fools,' he said to them; 'what's the good of beginning to fight among ourselves, when it is so necessary for the three of us to work together and get the upper hand over the king of this country. It will be a hard enough task as it is, but it will be altogether hopeless if we don't stick together. Sit down again, and let us finish our meal; I shall sit between you, and then neither of you can blame the other.'
Niels was too far away to hear their talk, but from their gestures he could guess what was happening, and thought it good fun.
'Thrice is lucky,' said he to himself; 'I'll have another shot yet.'
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