194 THE FAIRY OF THE DAWN
on his flute, and the giant fell back again. Petru tried this three times, and when he was satisfied that the giant was really in his power he took out a handkerchief, bound the two little fingers of the giant together, drew his sword, and cried for the fourth time, ' Wake up, my brave man.'
When the giant saw the trick that had been played' on him he said to Petru, 'Do you call this a fair fight? Fight according to rules, if you really are a hero!'
' I will by-and-by, but first I want to ask you a question! Will you swear that you will carry me over the river if I fight honourably with you ?' And the giant swore.
When his hands were freed, the giant flung himself upon Petru, hoping to crush him by his weight. But he had met his match. It was not yesterday, nor the day before, that Petru had fought his first battle, and he bore himself bravely.
For three days and three nights the battle raged, and sometimes one had the upper hand, and sometimes the other, till at length they both lay struggling on the ground, but Petru was on top, with the point of his sword at the giant's throat.
' Let me go! let me go! ' shrieked he. ' I own that I am beaten! '
' Will you take me over the river?' asked Petru.
' I will,' gasped the giant.
' What shall I do to you if you break your word? '
' Kill me, any way you like ! But let me live now.'
' Very well,' said Petru, and he bound the giant's left hand to his right foot, tied one handkerchief round his mouth to prevent him crying out, and another round his eyes, and led him to the river.
Once they had reached the bank he stretched one leg over to the other side, and, catching up Petru in the palm of his hand, set him down on the further shore.
' That is all right,' said Petru. Then he played a few