GRIMM'S FAIRY TALES - online book

130 Fairy Stories Adapted & Arranged for young people

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Day was just breaking, and she knew she had slept a long time, . but she felt refreshed, and she remembered that just such a moun tain as she had seen in her dream was not far distant. She im­mediately turned her steps towards it, and, after climbing up with some difficulty, reached the top, and found all as it had appeared in her dream.
The old woman of the cottage received her very kindly, and, pointing to a chair, asked her to be seated. "You must be suffer­ing from some great misfortune," she said, " or you would not have sought my lonely hut. Tell me what it is."
The poor wife then related with tears all that had happened.
" Be comforted, poor child," said the old woman, w I will help you. Take this golden comb, and, when the moon is full, go to the mill pond, seat yourself on the bank, and comb out your long black hair. When you have done this, lay the comb on the shore, and wait and see what happens."
The keeper's wife returned home, but the time till the moon be­came full seemed very long. At last, as the luminous disk appeared in the heavens, she went quickly out, seated herself by the mill pond, and began combing her long black hair with the golden comb. When she had finished, she placed the comb on the brink of the mill stream, and waited.
In a very short time the water bubbled up from the deep, a wave rose, rolled towards the shore, and carried away the golden comb as it receded. The comb could scarcely have sunk to the bottom, when the water divided, and the head of the gamekeeper appeared just above it.
He did not speak, and had only time to look sorrowfully at his wife before a second wave rose with a rushing sound, and covered the man's head. In a few moments the water lay at rest, tranquil and calm as ever, while on its smooth surface nothing could be seen but the face of the full moon reflected on it
The poor wife returned home with all her hope fled; but during the night she again dreamed of the little cottage in the meadow, and the old woman. So in the morning she hastened to visit the good fairy, and tell her tale of sorrow.
The wise woman comforted her as before, and, giving her this time a golden flute, she said : "Wait for another full moon, and then take this flute, seat yourself on the shore, and play upon it one