THE LILAC FAIRY BOOK - online childrens book

A Collection of Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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THE HOODIE-CROW
339
but he was already flying off, and she only seized a feather from his wing. And when dawn came, she got up and told the woman.
' He has gone over the hill of poison,' said she, ' and there you cannot follow him without horse-shoes on your hands and feet. But I will help you. Put on this suit of men's clothes, and go down this road till you come to the smithy, and there you can learn to make horse-shoes for yourself.'
The girl thanked her, and put on the clothes and went down the road to do her bidding. So hard did she work, that in a few days she was able to make the horse­shoes. Early one morning she set out for the hill of poison. On her hands and feet she went, but even with the horse-shoes on she had to be very careful not to stumble, lest some poisoned thorns should enter into her flesh, and she should die. But when at last she was over, it was only to hear that her husband was to be married that day to the daughter of a great lord.
Now there was to be a race in the town, and everyone meant to be there, except the stranger who had come over the hill of poison—everyone, that is, but the cook, who was to make the bridal supper. Greatly he loved races, and sore was his heart to think that one should be run without his seeing it, so when he beheld a woman whom he did not know coming along the street, hope sprang up in him.
' Will you cook the wedding feast in place of me ? ' he said, ' and I will pay you well when I return from the race.'
Gladly she agreed, and cooked the feast in a kitchen that looked into the great hall, where the company were to eat it. After that she watched the seat where the bridegroom was sitting, and taking a plateful of the broth, she dropped the ring and the feather into it, and set it herself before him.
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