Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 26, 1915.djvu/404

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394 Collectanea.

only a Gardener's boy? He was not afraid of what might happen to him did he watch as had the other lads, but, he was frightened at the idea of perhaps losing his job, and he was filled with horror at the thought that perhaps he would be driven away from the castle; for then, he would never be able to give flowers to the Princesses again, never be able to see their grace, nor the dreamy, soft, black eyes of the youngest, nor touch her white hand in handing her the flowers.

Night and day, such thoughts as these tortured him, and he didn't know what to do to satisfy his heart's desire, for he realised that in not doing so, he was slowly killing himself.

One night. Our Lad went to sleep, thinking of the hopeless love that was gnawing at his heart, and in his sleep, he saw the fairy that he had seen in the flowery dale. She said to him :

" If you go to the Eastern corner of the garden, you will find two laurels, the one cherry colour and the other rose colour; next to them, you will find a golden hoe, a golden ewer, and a silken towel. Take the two laurels, put them into two nice pots, hoe them with the golden hoe, water them out of the golden ewer, wipe them gently with the silken towel. Care for them as if they were the light of your eyes. If you do this, the laurels will grow, and when they are as tall as a man, whatever you wish for, that they will grant to you."

On this, she vanished, not even giving the Lad time to thank her.

He woke up quickly, and still quite sleepy, ran to the Eastern corner of the garden, where he stopped, quite stupified with joy, for everything was there, just as the fairy had told him in his dream. He rubbed his eyes, and pinched himself. .Was he still dreaming ? But no, he was wide awake by now, and saw that it was no night- fancy.

He took the greatest care of the laurels, hoeing them with the golden hoe, watering them out of the golden ewer, and wiping them gently with the silken towel. We needn't lengthen our talk any more, he just took care of them as of the light of his eyes.

The laurels grew beautifully. Before long, they got quite big, and no one had ever seen such magnificent bushes.