THE BROWNIE OF THE LAKE
Once upon a time there lived in France a man whose name was Jalm Riou. You might have walked a whole day without meeting anyone happier or more contented, for he had a large farm, plenty of money, and, above all, a daughter called Barbaik, the most graceful dancer and the best-dressed girl in the whole country side. When she appeared on holidays in her embroidered cap, five petticoats, each one a httle shorter than the other, and shoes with silver buckles, the women were all filled with envy, but Httle cared Barba'ik what they might whisper behind her back as long as she knew that her clothes were finer than anyone else's and that she had more partners than any other girl.
Now amongst all the young men who wanted to marry Barba'ik, the one whose heart was most set on her was her father's head man, but as his manners were rough and he was exceedingly ugly she would have nothing to say to him, and, what was worse, often made fun of him with the rest.
Jegu, for that was his name, of course heard of this, and it made him very unhappy. Still, he would not leave the farm, and look for work elsewhere, as he might have done, for then he would never see Barbaik at all, and what was life worth to him without that ?
One evening he was bringing back his horses from the fields, and stopped at a little lake on the way home to let them drink. He was tired with a long day's work,