THE OLIVE FAIRY BOOK - online childrens book

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

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Ismenor, whose suspicions were instantly excited ; but, think as he would, he could not see any means by which the king, so closely guarded, might have held communi­cation with the Swan fairy. Still, he would do nothing hastily, and, hiding his dismay, he told Eiquette that his only wish was to make her happy, and that as she wished so much for the stone he would fetch it for her. Then he went into the closet where all his spells were worked, and in a short time he discovered that his enemy the Swan fairy was at that moment inside his palace.
' So that is it! ' he said, smiling grimly. ' Well, she shall have a stone by all means, but a stone that will turn everyone who touches it into marble.' And placing a small ruby in a box, he returned to his daughter.
' Here is the talisman which will gain you the love of King Lino,' he said ; ' but be sure you give him the box unopened, or else the stone will lose all its virtue.' With a cry of joy Eiquette snatched the box from his hands, and ran off to the prison, followed by her father, who, holding tightly the enchanted handkerchief, was able, unseen, to watch the working of the spell. As he expected, at the foot of the tower stood the Swan fairy, who had had the imprudence to appear in her natural shape, waiting for the stone which the prince was to throw to her. Eagerly she caught the box as it fell from the prince's hands, but no sooner had her fingers touched the ruby, than a curious hardening came over her, her limbs stiffened, and her tongue could hardly utter the words ' We are betrayed.'
' Yes, you are betrayed,' cried Ismenor, in a terrible voice ; ' and you,' he continued, dragging the king to the window, ' you shall turn into a parrot, and a parrot you will remain until you can persuade Hermosa to crush in your head.'
He had hardly finished before a blue parrot flew out into the forest; and the magician, mounting in his winged chariot, set off for the Isle of Swans, where he
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