Page:Tales of old Lusitania.djvu/148

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She proceeded next to the sun's great realm, and there she was as unsuccessful as before.

The seven years' term was now drawing to a close, and the poor princess was beginning to lose all hope of finding the white lamb, her husband, when she met an old woman, who asked her what she was doing there. The princess said she was seeking her spouse, who was a beautiful white lamb; that he had left her seven years before to go to the river South, and she had been seeking him ever since, but all her efforts had been in vain, for she could not find the river South. The old lady then pointing to a very large gateway, said: "That portal leads to the river South; enter, my child, and you will see a number of little birds fluttering about; but the one that comes and lies at your feet is the white lamb, for he has been changed into a bird."

The maiden went through the portal, and soon found herself at the river's side, where a number of birds sat on the trees and bushes growing on its banks. The birds began to flutter over her head, until presently one of them, more beautifully plumed than the rest, fell at her feet and began pecking them. The maiden said: "Are you the white lamb?" That moment the prince was restored to his natural shape, and he started off with his wife back to his mother's palace. The spell was broken, and they lived happily together ever after.