PRINCE RICARDO. 189
dwarf at Jericho, when through the open window, with a tremendous whirr, came a huge vulture, and knocked the king's wishing cap off! Wishing was now of no use.
This odious fowl was the Fairy of the Desert, the Dwarf's trusted ally in every sort of mischief. The vulture flew instantly out of the window; and ah ! with what awful anxiety the king again turned his eyes on the crystal ball only a parent's heart can know. Should he see Ricardo bleeding at the feet of the abominable dwarf? The king scarcely dared to look; never before had he known the nature of fear. However, look he did, and saw the dwarf un-catted, and Pepper, the gallant Dandie Din-mont, with his teeth in the throat of the monstrous Spanish cat.
No sooner had he seen the cat leap on his master's saddle-bow than Pepper, true to the instinct of his race, sprang at its neck, just behind the head—the usual place,—and, with an awful and despairing mew, the cat (Peter was its name) gave up its life.
The dwarf was on his feet in a moment, waving the diamond sword, which lighted up the whole scene, and yelling taunts. Pepper was flying at his heels, and, with great agility, was keeping out of the way of the invincible blade.
"Ah!" screamed the Dwarf as Pepper got him by the ankle. " Call off your dog, you