THE THREE LITTLE MEN IN THE WOOD. 81
covered him up again, and then, in the likeness of a duck, swam back down the gutter. In this way she came two nights, and on the third she said to the kitchen-boy,
" Go and tell the King to brandish his sword three times over me on the threshold !"
Then the kitchen-boy ran and told the King, and he came with his sword and brandished it three times over the duck, and at the third time his wife stood before him living, and hearty, and sound, as she had been before.
The King was greatly rejoiced, but he hid the Queen in a chamber until the Sunday came when the child was to be baptized. And after the baptism he said,
"What does that person deserve who drags another out of bed and throws him in the water ? "
And the old woman answered,
" No better than to be put into a cask with iron nails in it, and to be rolled in it down the hill into the water."
Then said the King,
u You have spoken your own sentence ;" and he ordered a cask to be fetched, and the old woman and her daughter were put into it, and* the top hammered down, and the cask was rolled down the hill into the river.