The Crimson Fairy Book - online children's book

A Classic fairy tale collection for children by Andrew Lang

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'So it is,' said Peter; 'let's stay all night in it.'
'No, we can't afford that,' said the old people; 'it will be too dear for the like of us.'
However, when they saw what was written above the door, they were all well pleased to get a night's lodging for nothing. They were well received, and had so much attention given to them, that the old people were quite put out by it. After they had got time to rest themselves, the princess's steward came to hear their story.
'You saw what was written above the door,' he said to the father. 'Tell me who you are and what your history has been.'
'Dear me, I have nothing of any importance to tell you,' said the old man, 'and I am sure we should never have made so bold as to trouble you at all if it hadn't been for the youngest of our two sons here.'
'Never mind that,' said the steward; ' you are very welcome if you will only tell me the story of your life.'
'Well, well, I will,' said he, 'but there is nothing to tell about it. I and my wife have lived all our days on a moor in North Jutland, until this last year, when she took a fancy to go to Rome. We set out with our two sons but turned back long before we got there, and are now on our way home again. That's all my own story, and our two sons have lived with us all their days, so there is nothing more to be told about them either.'
'Yes there is,' said Rasmus; 'when we were on our way south, we slept in the wood near here one night, and I shot a stag.'
The steward was so much accustomed to hearing stories of no importance that he thought there was no use going further with this, but reported to the princess that the newcomers had nothing to tell.
'Did you question them all?' she said.
'Well, no; not directly,' said he; 'but the father said that none of them could tell me any more than he had done.'
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