244 The Princess and the Goblin
when I came upon the royal family in the cave, they were talking of their prince—Harelip, they called him—marrying a sun-woman—that means one of us—one with toes to her feet. Now in the speech one of them made that night at their great gathering, of which I heard only a part, he said that peace would be secured for a generation at least by the pledge the prince would hold for the good behaviour of her relatives: that's what he said, and he must have meant the sun-woman the prince was to marry. I am quite sure the king is much too proud to wish his son to marry any but a princess, and much too knowing to fancy that his having a peasant woman for a wife would be of any great advantage to them.
" I see what you are driving at now," said his mother.
"But," said his father, " the king would dig the mountain to the plain before he would have his princess the wife of a cob, if he were ten times a prince."
"Yes; but they think so much of themselves!" said his mother. "Small creatures always do. The bantam is the proudest cock in my little yard."