Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 26, 1915.djvu/308

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298 Collectanea.

She looked at him as if she would sip him in with that look. But he neither saw nor heard, so far away was he in his thoughts.

After a long time,— who knows how ? — he began to notice that a Tortoise followed the tip of his wand, so he looked at her ; and he felt, dear me, as if his heart were telling him something, but what it was he could not understand.

When he quite woke up from his thoughts, it struck him that the sun was setting, so he got up slowly and went home, just like that, dreaming about nothing.

The next day, he wandered off again, and did just the same thing, without even remembering that he had set out to search for a bride.

On the third day, as soon as he woke up, he went again towards the Pool. It seemed that the String of his Fate drew him.

And now, once more, he sat down by the Pool, idly splashing the water with his wand, while the Tortoise, popping out each time after its tip, looked longingly at him. And suddenly he remembered, with a start, that he had really gone out to search for a bride, and that his brothers were bringing their betrothed to their father on the following day.

And just as he wanted to get up and go off somewhere to try his luck, — zusht ! — pops the Tortoise out of the Pool ; so he cast a more attentive glance at her, looking straight at her eyes, and he felt an " I don't know what" just there at his heart, as if he had been shot by an arrow. So he sat himself down again. He would have liked to go away, but it was as if somebody had nailed him to the spot. Again he tried to get away, but in vain, his legs refused to move.

Wondering at this lack of will, he once more looked at the Tortoise, and then he saw her eyes, which seemed to glow with a fire that began to burn in him also. So then, with his heart on his lips, he cried out :

" This shall be my bride ! "

" My Dear Love ! " then said the Tortoise, " Thou art my Fate ! I will follow thee so long as I have life in nie ! "

The Lad was rather frightened when he heard the Tortoise