The RED Fairy Book - online children's book

Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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THE MASTER THIEF                            79
When the Master Thief got there the mare went along so slowly and quietly that the cart hardly seemed to move from the spot. The mare pulled it a little forward, and then a little back, and then it stopped quite short. Then the mare pulled a little forward again, and it moved with such difficulty that the Governor had not the least idea that this was the Master Thief. He rode straight up to him, and asked if he had seen anyone hiding anywhere about in a wood that was close by.
' No,' said the man, ' that have I not.'
' Hark you,' said the Governor. ' If you will ride into that wood,
and search it carefully to see if you can light upon a fellow who is hiding in there, you shall have the loan of my horse and a good present of money for your trouble.'
' I am not sure that I can do it,' said the man, 'for I have to go to a wedding with this cask of mead which I have been to fetch, and the tap has fallen out on the way, so now I have to keep my finger in the tap-hole as I drive.'
' Oh, just ride off,' said the Governor, ' and I will look after the cask and the horse too.'
So the man said that if he would do that he would go, but he
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