230 THE STORY OF BIG KLAUS
' No, don't do that! ' called out the sexton in the chest. ' Let me get out first !'
' Oh, oh !' said Little Klaus, pretending that he was afraid. 'He is still in there ! I must throw him quickly into the water to drown him !'
' Oh ! no, no !' cried the sexton. ' I will give you a whole bushel-ful of money if you will let me go !'
'Ah, that's quite another thing!' said Little Klaus, opening the chest. The sexton crept out very quickly, pushed the empty chest into the water and went to his house, where he gave Little Klaus a bushel of money. One he had had already from the farmer, and now he had his wheelbarrow full of money.
' Well, I have got a good price for the horse !' said he to himself when he shook all his money out in a heap in his room. ' This will put Big Klaus in a rage when he hears how rich I have become through my one horse; but I won't tell him just yet! '
So he sent a boy to Big Klaus to borrow a bushel measure from him.
' Now what can he want with it ? ' thought Big Klaus ; and he smeared some tar at the bottom, so that of whatever was measured a little should remain in it. And this is just what happened ; for when he got his measure back, three new silver five-shilling pieces were sticking to it.
What does this mean ? ' said Big Klaus, and he ran off at once to Little Klaus.
'Where did you get so much money from ? '
' Oh, that was from my horse-skin. I sold it yesterday evening.'
' That's certainly a good price !' said Big Klaus ; and running home in great haste, he took an axe, knocked all his four horses on the head, skinned them, and went into the towTn,
'Skins! skins! Who will buy skins?' he cried through the streets.
All the shoemakers and tanners came running to ask him what he wanted for them. ' A bushel of money for each,' said Big Klaus.
' Are you mad ? ' they all exclaimed. ' Do you think we have money by the bushel ? '
' Skins ! skins ! Who will buy skins? ' he cried again, and to all who asked him what they cost, he answered, 'A bushel of money.'
' He is making game of us,' they said; and the shoemakers