The Crimson Fairy Book - online children's book

A Classic fairy tale collection for children by Andrew Lang

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accompany his father. But it was all no use, he was quite obstinate and would not listen to a word she said. 'You will have to hide me again,' said he, so no sooner had the king gone than Ingiborg hid Sigurd between the wall and the panelling, and by-and-by there was heard once more a sound like an earthquake, as a great giantess, wading knee deep through the ground, came in at the door.
'Good day, Sister Ingiborg!' she cried, in a voice like thunder; 'is Prince Sigurd at home?'
'Oh, no,' answered Ingiborg, 'he is enjoying himself out there in the forest. I expect it will be quite dark before he comes back again.'
'That's a lie!' shouted the giantess. And they squabbled about it till they were tired, after which Ingiborg laid the table; and when the giantess had done eating she said: 'Well, I must thank you for all these good things, and for the best lamb, the best can of beer and the best drink I have had for a long time; but--are you quite sure Prince Sigurd is not at home?'
'Quite,' said Ingiborg. 'I've told you already that he rode off with his father this morning to hunt in the forest.'
At this the giantess roared out with a terrible voice: 'If he is near enough to hear my words, I lay this spell on him: Let him be half scorched and half withered; and may he have neither rest nor peace till he finds me.' And with these words she stalked off.
For a moment Ingiborg stood as if turned to stone, then she fetched Sigurd from his hiding-place, and, to her horror, there he was, half scorched and half withered.
'Now you see what has happened through your own obstinacy,' said she; 'but we must lose no time, for your father will soon be coming home.'
Going quickly into the next room she opened a chest and took out a ball of string and three gold rings, and gave them to Sigurd, saying: 'If you throw this ball on the ground it will roll along till it reaches some high cliffs. There you will see a giantess looking out over the rocks. She will call down to you and say: "Ah, this is just what I wanted! Here is Prince Sigurd. He shall go into the pot to-night"; but don't be frightened
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