274 PRINCE AND PRINCESS IN THE FOREST
So they hurried on, and by-and-by up came the prince.
' Has your lordship a piece of money for a poor man ?" asked the old fellow.
' Yes,' said the prince, and gave him his whole-sackful.
'I don't want it,' said the old man, who was really the troll they had just left in disguise. ' But since you're so generous, here is the princess's lamp, and the princess herself is in the cave where you found her; but how you're going to save her again without the magic sword I don't know.'
When he heard that, the prince knew where she was ; and that was the beginning of her rescue. So he disguised himself to look like a pedlar and travelled on until he reached his own city, where his mother, the queen, and the robber-chief were living. Then he went in to a goldsmith's shop and ordered a great number of kitchen pots to be made out of pure gold. That was not an order the goldsmith had every day, but the things were ready at last, saucepans and kettles and gridirons all of pure gold. Then the prince put them in his basket and went up to the palace, and asked to see the queen.
Directly she heard about the wonderful gold pots and pans she came out at once, and began unpacking the basket and admiring the things. She was so absorbed in them that the prince soon found an opportunity to steal into the bedroom and take the sword and shirt which were hung there, and go back again without his mother having noticed his absence.
' The things are all beautiful ! ' she said. ' How much would you take for them ? '
' Name your own price, your majesty,' answered the prince.
' I really don't know what to say,' said the queen. ' Wait till my husband comes back—men understand