330 GIRL WHO PRETENDED TO BE A BOY
over the other. Seeing what they took to be a young man seeking adventures, one of the combatants called out, ' Fet-Fruners! deliver me from my enemy, and I will give you the horn that can be heard the distance of a three days' journey; ' while the other cried, ' Fet-Fruners ! help me to conquer this pagan thief, and you shall have my horse, Sunlight.'
Before answering, the princess consulted her own horse as to which offer she should accept, and he advised her to side with the genius who was master of Sunlight, his own younger brother, and still more active than himself.
So the girl at once attacked the other genius, and soon clove his skull; then the one who was left victor begged her to come back with him to his house and he would hand her over Sunlight, as he had promised.
The mother of the genius was rejoiced to see her son return safe and sound, and prepared her best room for the princess, who, after so much fatigue, needed rest badly. But the girl declared that she must first make her horse comfortable in his stable ; but this was really only an excuse, as she wanted to ask his advice on several matters.
But the old woman had suspected from the very first that the boy who had come to the rescue of her son was a girl in disguise, and told the genius that she was exactly the wife he needed. The genius scoffed, and inquired what female hand could ever wield a sabre like that; but, in spite of his sneers, his mother persisted, and as a proof of what she said, laid at night on each of their pillows a handful of magic flowers, that fade at the touch of man, but remain eternally fresh in the fingers of a woman.
It was very clever of her, but unluckily the horse had warned the princess what to expect, and when the house was silent, she stole very softly to the genius's room, and exchanged his faded flowers for those she held. Then she crept back to her own bed and fell fast asleep.