THE ORANGE FAIRY BOOK - online childrens book

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

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210
THE WHITE DOE
say; and at length the king, in despair, resolved to send a fresh embassy to Desiree's father to implore him to permit the marriage to be celebrated at once. 'I would have presented my prayer in person,' he added in his letter, 'but my great age and infirmities do not suffer me to travel; however my envoy has orders to agree to any arrangement that you may propose.'
On his arrival at the palace Becasigue pleaded his young master's cause as fervently as the king his father could have done, and entreated that the princess might be consulted in the matter. The queen hastened to the marble tower, and told her daughter of the sad state of the prince. Desiree sank down fainting at the news, but soon came to herself again, and set about inventing a plan which would enable her to go to the prince with­out risking the doom pronounced over her by the wicked fairy.
'I see!' she exclaimed joyfully at last. 'Let a carriage be built through which no light can come, and let it be brought into my room. I will then get into it, and we can travel swiftly during the night and arrive before dawn at the palace of the prince. Once there, I can remain in some underground chamber, where no light can come.
'Ah, how clever you are,' cried the queen, clasping her in her arms. And she hurried away to tell the king.
'What a wife our prince will have!' said Becasigue bowing low; 'but I must hasten back with the tidings, and to prepare the underground chamber for the princess.' And so he took his leave.
In a few days the carriage commanded by the princess was ready. It was of green velvet, scattered over with large golden thistles, and lined inside with silver brocade embroidered with pink roses. It had no windows, of course; but the fairy Tulip, whose counsel had been asked, had managed to light it up with a soft glow that came no one knew whither.
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