GRIMM'S FAIRY TALES - online book

130 Fairy Stories Adapted & Arranged for young people

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THE CRYSTAL BALL.                   571
must climb to the top of the mountain upon which this castle stands, and there you will find a "wild buffalo, standing by a spring. With him you must fight, and if you are so fortunate as to kill him, a phoenix will rise out of his dead body. This creature you must also destroy, and in it you will find a red-hot egg, and if you break it, instead of a yolk will be seen the crystal ball. But you must be careful not to let the egg fall on the ground. If you do, it will immediately ignite and burn up everything near it. The egg also will melt, and with it the crystal ball, so that all your trouble will be lost."
The youth, on hearing this, did not delay a moment. He went out and found the buffalo at the spring, snorting and bellowing. The combat, however, did not last long, for, after two or three thrusts with his sword, the animal lay dead at the young man's feet. In a moment there rose a fiery bird from the buffalo's body, who attempted to fly away ; but the eagle—the youth's brother who had been changed by the sorceress—and who was flying in the air above their heads, darted swiftly down, drove the bird towards the sea, and so wounded it with his beak, that in her distress she dropped the egg. It did not fall into the sea, but on a fisherman's little hut, which stood on the shore, and immediately the hut and all around it were in flames. At this moment there rose from tire sea an immense stream of water, which fell on the hut and quickly ex­tinguished the fire.
The second brother, the whale, while swimming that way, had also been able to assist the youth, by spirting up the water, as whales do.
No sooner was the fire extinguished, than the young man searched among the embers for the egg, and luckily found it, safe and per­fect. It had not melted, but the sudden rush of the cold water had broken the shell, and he could easily remove the crystal ball.
The youth went immediately to the sorcerer, and held the ball before him. "My power is now destroyed," he said, "and you are the king of the castle of the golden sun. You can also restore your brothers to their natural forms whenever you like."
The young man, on hearing this, hastened to the princess, and on entering her chamber she stood before him in the full blaze erf her beauty ; then with joyful hearts they exchanged rings with each other, and swore eternal love.