could be of any help. As soon as the duck perceived him it cried in a human voice: "Oh, dear Prince Milan, for the love of Heaven give me back my garment, and I will be so grateful to you." The prince laid the little garment on the bank beside her and stepped back into the bushes. In a few seconds a beautiful girl in a white robe stood before him, so fair and sweet and young that no pen could describe her. She gave the prince her hand and spoke.
"Many thanks, Prince Milan, for your courtesy. I am the daughter of a wicked magician and my name is Hyacinthia. My father has thirty young daughters and is a mighty ruler in the under world, with many castles and great riches. He has been expecting, you for ages, but you need have no fear if you will only follow my advice. As soon as you come into the presence of my father, throw yourself at once on the ground and approach him on your knees. Don't mind if he stamps furiously with bis feet and curses and swears. I'll attend to the rest, and in the mean time we had better be off."
With these words the beautiful Hyacinthia stamped on the ground with her little foot, and the earth opened and they both sank down into the lower world.
The palace of the magician was all hewn out of a single carbuncle, lighting up the whole surrounding region, and Prince Milan walked into it gayly.
The magician sat on a throne, a sparkling crown on his head; his eyes blazed like a green fire, and instead of hands he had claws. As soon as Prince Milan entered he flung himself on his knees. The magician stamped loudly with his feet, glared frightfully out of his green eyes, and cursed so loudly that the whole under world shook. But the prince, mindful of the counsel he had been given, wasn't the least afraid, and approached the throne still on his knees. At last the magician laughed aloud and said: "You rogue, you have been well advised to make me laugh. I won't'be your enemy any more. Welcome to the under world! All the same, for your delay ir. coming here we must demand three services from you. For to-day you may go, but to-morrow I shall have something more to say to you."
Then two servants fed Prince Milan to a beautiful apartment, and- he lay down fearlessly on the soft bed that had been prepared for him and was soon fast asleep.