Once when he was thus standing behind a tree, he saw that a Witch came there, and he heard how she cried:.
At first Rapunzel was terribly frightened when a man, such as her eyes had never yet beheld, came to her. Bring with you a skein of silk every time that you come, and I will weave a ladder with it. When that is ready I will descend, and you will take me on your horse.
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They agreed that until that time, he should come to her every evening, for the old woman came by day. I thought I had separated you from all the world, and yet you have deceived me!
And she was so pitiless that she took poor Rapunzel into a desert, where she had to live in great grief and misery. He did not find his dearest Rapunzel above, but the Witch, who gazed at him with wicked and venomous looks. But the beautiful bird sits no longer singing in the nest.
The cat has got it, and will scratch out your eyes as well. Rapunzel is lost to you!
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You will never see her more! He escaped with his life, but the thorns into which he fell, pierced his eyes. Then he 29 wandered quite blind about the forest, ate nothing but roots and berries, and did nothing but lament and weep over the loss of his dearest wife. Thus he roamed about in misery for some years, and at length came to the desert where Rapunzel lived in wretchedness.
He heard a voice, and it seemed so familiar to him that he went toward it. When he approached, Rapunzel knew him, and fell on his neck and wept. Two of her tears wetted his eyes and they grew clear again, and he could see with them as before. He led her to his Kingdom where he was joyfully received, and they lived for a long time, happy and contented.
Our meals are the hard crusts of bread that are left over. The little dog under the table is better off, for she often throws it a nice bit. May Heaven pity us! If our mother only knew! Come, we will go forth together into the wide world. In the evening they came to a large forest, and they were so weary with sorrow and hunger and the long walk, that they lay down in a hollow tree and fell asleep.
The next day when they awoke, the sun was already high and shone down hot into the tree. If I knew of a little brook I would go and take a drink. I think I hear one running. But the wicked stepmother was a Witch, and had seen how the two children had gone away. She had crept after them, as Witches do creep, and had bewitched all the brooks in the forest. Now, when they found a little brook leaping brightly over the stones, the little brother was going to drink out of it, but the little sister heard how it said as it ran:. But the little brother had knelt by the brook, and had bent down and drunk some of the water.
And as soon as the first drops touched his lips, he lay there a young Roe. And now the little sister wept over her poor bewitched little brother, and the little Roe wept also, and sat sorrowfully near to her. With this she tied the little animal and led it on; and she walked deeper and deeper into the forest. And when they had gone a very long way, they came to a little house. Then she sought for leaves and moss to make a soft bed for the Roe.
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Every morning she went out and gathered roots and berries and nuts for herself, and brought tender grass for the Roe, who ate out of her hand, and was content and played round about her. And if only the little brother had had his human form, it would have been a delightful life. For some time, they were alone like this in the wilderness. But it happened that the King of the country held a great hunt in the forest. Then the blasts of the horns, the barking of dogs, and the merry shouts of the huntsmen rang through the 33 trees, and the Roe heard all, and was only too anxious to be there.
And if you do not say that, I shall not open the door. The King and the huntsmen saw the pretty creature, and started after him. But they could not catch him, and when they thought that they surely had him, away he sprang through the bushes and was gone. The next day, the hunt went on afresh, and when the Roe again heard the bugle-horn, and the ho!
When the King and his huntsmen again saw the young Roe with the golden collar, they all chased him, but he was too quick and nimble for them. This went on for the whole day, but by evening the huntsmen had surrounded him, and one of 34 them wounded him a little in the foot, so that he limped and ran slowly. The huntsman took notice of it all, and went to the King and told him what he had seen and heard.
The little sister, however, was dreadfully frightened when she saw that her little Roe was hurt. But the wound was so slight that the Roe, next morning, did not feel it any more. They shall not find it so easy to catch me! I will not let you out. Then the little sister could not do otherwise, but opened the door for him with a heavy heart, and the Roe, full of health and joy, bounded away into the forest. Then the door opened, and the King walked in, and there stood a maiden more lovely than any he had ever seen. The maiden was frightened when she saw, not her little Roe, but a man with a golden crown upon his head.
But the King looked kindly at her, stretched out his hand, and said:. Just then he came running in, and the little sister again tied him with the cord of rushes, took it in her own hand, and went away with the King from the cottage. The King took the lovely maiden upon his horse and carried her to his palace, where the wedding was held with great pomp.
She was now the Queen, and they lived for a long time happily together. The Roe was tended and cherished, and ran about in the palace-garden.
But the wicked Witch, because of whom the children had gone out into the world, thought all the time that the little sister had been torn to pieces by the wild beasts in the wood, and that the little brother had been shot for a Roe by the huntsmen. Now when she heard that they were so happy, and so well off, envy and hatred rose in her heart and left her no peace, and she thought of nothing but how she could bring them again to misfortune.
As time went on, the Queen had a pretty little boy. It will do you good, and give you fresh strength. Make haste before it gets cold. The daughter also was close by; so they carried the weak Queen into the bathroom, and put her into the bath. Then they shut the door and ran away. But in the bathroom they had made a fire of such deadly heat, that the beautiful young Queen was soon suffocated. When this was done, the old woman took her daughter, put a nightcap on her head, and laid her in bed in place of the Queen. She gave her too the shape and the look of the Queen, only she could not make good the lost eye.
But, in order that the King might not see it, she was to lie on the side on which she had no eye. In the evening, when he came home and heard that he had a son, he was heartily glad, and was going to the bed of his dear wife to see how she was. The Queen ought not to see the light yet, and must have rest.
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But at midnight, when all slept, the nurse, who was sitting 37 in the nursery by the cradle, and who was the only person awake, saw the door open and the true Queen walk in. She took the child out of the cradle, laid it on her arm and nursed it. Then she shook up its pillow, laid the child down again, and covered it with the little quilt.