AMUSEMENTS FOR EVERYBODY 121
The Maids (in chorus).—He has not any manners!
The Princess (going nearer).—What have you there?
The Prince.—A porridge-pot, your Highness, (whistles and rubs again).
The Princess (disappointed).—A porridge-pot! What a stupid thing! Have you not a musical box? (angrily.) Stop whistling this moment, and answer me: I can't stand near nasty pig-sties for ever.
The Prince.—This is all I have made to-day, Princess, but if you will wait a moment I shall show you what it can do. (goes into hut, coming back again quickly with a jug of very hot water which he pours into the pot.)
The Princess.—What can a silly old porridge-pot do ?
The Prince (placing it on a stool).—You will see, if you come close and put your finger on the edge of it. (The Princess obeys, holding up her long skirt and stepping daintily.)
The Princess (with her finger on the pot).—Oh! Delightful! Listen, all of you! The Chamberlain is having cutlets for dinner to-day: the Treasurer, French soup (I always thought he was a stingy thing): the Court Herald, eggs and bacon and radishes and tea. . . .
The Maids (in chorus, clapping hands).—Delightful! Charming ! How do you know, dear Princess ?
The Princess.—The pot tells me. The Tailor is having roast beef and Yorkshire pudding: the Cobbler, ham sandwiches and . . . Oh what a lovely pot!
The Maids (putting their fingers on).—The Emperor will have bread and milk and honey for supper: the Chamberlain . . .
The Princess (interrupting).—Yes, yes, I know. Oh, and listen, the pot is singing now. Hush! Ah! that is my piece too; I play it with one finger (dancing round in time and singing)
Tra la la la la la........
The Prince.—It sings much louder if it is put on the fire. The Princess.—I must have it for my own, that is very certain. The Maids.—Yes, yes! The Princess.—What will you take for it, Swineherd ?