THE FLOWER QUEEN'S DAUGHTER 193
this little bell: if you ring it once, the King of the Eagles will appear; if you ring it twice, the King of the Foxes will come to you; and if you ring it three times, you will see the King of the Fishes by your side. These will help you if you are in any difficulty. Now farewell, and heaven prosper your undertaking.' She handed him the little bell, and there disappeared hut and all, as though the earth had swallowed her up.
Then it dawned on the Prince that he had been speaking to a good fairj7, and putting the little bell carefully in his pocket, he rode home and told his father that he meant to set the daughter of the Flower Queen free, and intended setting out on the following day into the wide world in search of the maid.
So the next morning the Trince mounted his fine horse and left his home. He had roamed round the world for a whole year, and his horse had died of exhaustion, while he himself had suffered much from want and misery, but still he had come on no trace of her he was in search of. At last one day he came to a hut, in front of which sat a very old man. The Prince asked him, ' Do you not know where the Dragon lives who keeps the daughter of the Flower Queen prisoner ?'
' No, I do not,' answered the old man. ' But if you go straight along this road for a year, you will reach a hut where my father lives, and possibly he may be able to tell you.'
The Prince thanked him for his information, and continued his journey for a whole year along the same road, and at the end of it came to the little hut, where he found a very old man. He asked him the same question, and the old man answered, ' No, I do not know where the Dragon lives. But go straight along this road for another year, and you will come to a hut in which my father lives. I know he can tell you.'
And so the Prince wandered on for another year, always on the Fame road, and at last reached the hut where he found the third old man. lie put the same question to him as he had put to his son and grandson; but this time the old man answered, 'The Dragon lives up there on the mountain, and ho has just begun his year of sleep. For one whole year he is always awaki , and the next he sleeps. But if y»u wish to see the Flower Queen's daughter go up the second mountain : the Dragon's old mother lives thi and she has a ball every night, to which the Flower Queen's daughter goes regularly.'
So the Prince went up the second mountain, where he found a