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Fairy Adventures from Chronicles of Pantouflia By Andrew Lang

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32
PRINCE PRIGIO
" The king," said he to himself, " has threat≠ened to execute anybody who speaks to me, or helps me in any way. Well, I don't mean to starve in the midst of plenty, anyhow ; here goes! "
The prince rose, and went to the table in the midst of the room, where a huge roast turkey had just been placed. He helped himself to half the breast, some sausages, chestnut stuffing, bread sauce, potatoes, and a bottle of red wineó Burgundy. He then went back to a table in a corner, where he dined very well, nobody taking any notice of him. When he had finished, he sat watching the other people dining, and smoking his cigarette. As he was sitting thus, a very tall man, an officer in the uniform of the Guards, came in, and, walking straight to the prince's table, said : " Kellner, clean this table, and bring in the bill of fare."
With these words, the officer sat down suddenly in the prince's lap, as if he did not see him at all. He was a heavy man, and the prince, enraged at the insult, pushed him away and jumped to his feet. As he did so, his cap dropped off. The officer fell on his knees at once, crying :
" Pardon, my prince, pardon ! I never saw you ! "
This was more than the prince could be expected to believe.
"Nonsense! Count Frederick von Matter-
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