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THE SNAKE-EMPEROR'S GIFTS \ Knlry Tnl«« IVoiu Ilowttin IU.TOIM IIV 1.0 l INT. NOl VAN *\u25a0*"\u25a0""* HKHIC wa3once a poor lad who I- '.went. into the forest to get wood I on his back!' Suddenly he no ticed" two fighting snakes— -a lit tle white adder trying to 'defend itself against a big black viper. He .killed the big viper with his ax. but the little one- he put Into his belt 'so it should reoover t After a while he heard It say, "Thank you, O hero! I am Sluiramana, the ' snake emperor's daughter;, please, do take me, where. I tell you. :We will ' noon be at my*#ather's house; and as v reward 1 you' ask of him 'the ring from ils'rlght hand, the rug upon which he s sitting and the whip wliich.ls lying beside him." . \u25a0 -•\u25a0'..'" I . lii a short tlnie!tjiey really came to a cave. The lad had to crawl into it. The cave. was pitch dark, .and, he .hardly had \u0084 made half a step when hissing vipers '. rushed at;him from all sides and cor ners. At this moment the little snake turned- Into- a beautiful girl, with golden., hair and golden clothes. As soon. 'as the vipers saw her, they flew back'ari4 politely bowed to.the liui'. Now such, politeness .he had never' seen In his" lite, and he thought It very nice -Indeed. . . : * • .In 'a corner of the cave the snake emperor wai sitting drinking black coffee and smoking""a water pipe. Kor a ;long:ttrhe' he looked wonderingly at fjie lad; •« and*, finally he said: "Whom ;Have : you, brought hero, my daughter?" SharamanaV.repHed:<"This man is my ibrothff • -of (Brotherhood of choice,- friendship in. Its- highest mean ..ing.'is/a < frequenti occurrence with the peasants "of'ithc 1 Balkans and Is con sidered fUke'-klridred.'* \ . "He; lmsHaved.mc from the claws of :;my enemy and killed him, whereas all of my kind, who- had been near fled." \u25a0<' Upon '; that' the' snake emperor said: "l.'Opou. yonder chamber and let him take as many gold; pieces as he wants." But thelad replied: "Dear emperor, I want no. money: give me the ring from your right hand, tlfe rug upon which you aro sitting and the whip which is lying near by. Either these or nothing." "You ~ask much," said tin? emperor; "yet since you saved' my dearest take what seems to, you your reward, so men won't say [they are bettor and more /generous than snakes." vSlmramana accompanied the lad a . short way back and said in parting: "Nowi you' have luck in your hands. I ' am sorry, though. I can not give you \u25a0the necessary common sense for it. .With men always the wicked aro clever. It 'is better to have It in one's head than in one's purse. And now goodby and luck be with you." In returning home -he found his \u25a0 mother weak and exhausted from hun ger. He took out the ring and thought to himself: "What is this ring to me? I will uell it and buy bread with It." So he. ran' out. On the way he, came to a fine house where a beautiful girl was living of whom he had been fond for a. long while. But what help was , thut to ' him? Today was Sunday and the house beleaguered by young men, who all were looking up at tho trelllsed windows of beautiful Aisha. lie, too, tarried a little while, Just a tiny mo ment-^-perhiips by chance ' lie could yet catch a glance. Suddenly the • window was flung open.' and — splash!—- ho had a .bucket of water on his head and neck. Angry beyond saying, lift shook. "^ the water from him and cried: '-"-You . will yet beg me to marry you!" Then he took." to his heels, the young men's laughtorand scorn following him. As it grew dark ho saw that the ring on his finger Illumined the whole street. "This one would save me candles," he thought. "What a pity I have to give it away. 'Yet shooting at two hares at one .Aime means to lose both!" .Ho met an old gentlemun to whom ho of fered the ring. "What good is tlils ring to me?" said the old man. "Give it to. a pretty girl." He gave tho lad some money to buy broad. Arrived at tho baker's, tho lad got ready to give him somo 'small change when he noticed to his utmost amazement that ho was holding in his hand a gold piece. Immediately he or dered a whole sackful of bread and had the -baker change the gold pieco. ' At horao ho saw that the small change hud again turned into gold. Now for the first time he understood the ring's value. He therefore never took It off his finger,' and so it was no diffi cult task "to become rich in short or der. Ho soon bought houses and shops and was"th« richest merchant in town; Bountiful Aisha hardly trusted her eyes, seeing the poor lad stalking about in such tine clothes. No matter how often she showed herself at the'win dow, he never would look up.- Now, about that she almost burst, of anger. At last she said to her father, whose only, spoiled child she was, "(let me, that lad, for I must know where his wealth comes from or, I'll die." The frightened father fetched the Jad. So he came, thinking that now surely she would ask him to marry her. Amiably she received him and chatted about this and that. Her words were as sweet as pure honey, and, i/ilnd you, TTTE-SAN FRAXCTSCO CATJ;, SATURDAY, JANUARY 22, 1910.— THE JUNIOR CAIiTJ Ytt, a 6 maitc* how iwmlp M bruitmxlir mm- ulkni - h« herd wttunt for U^hW „,««« WKfk b^, \ • \u25a0 , \u25a0 - •* j before he, knew it he had let the cat out. of the bag and told • the secret of the ring. Of course he | had to show the ring, he had, to take it off his finger, and, swoop, she was. out of tlie room with.it. He .waited and waited and waited. At last he understood. .Then he /sneaked out of the house. Almost overnight his money vanished and one morning ho was just as-poor as when he had found the snake prin cess. Ashamed to stay; in that town as a poor man, he took the little old rug of .the snake emperor, the only tiling that stayed with him, as it was, so shabby that. nobody wanted it. He had also'the whip, which he took to chase away the dogs. So with his mother lie wandered away. Again ho was the poor wood cutter as before. He, didn't like It at all. But he worked diligently day after day. But since the best ox ran not plow always he one day sat down on his little old rug to rest awhile. Mosquitoes both ered him, so he pulled out his whip and whipped them n way, so that its crack ing was heard for a mile. , All of v sudden he felt lifted up by the rug, as though it wore flying away with him. This sensation ho liked greatly. Immediately he started for a trial ride. With one hand he held him-, self to the rug and with; the other ho snapped the whip as hard as he could, wishing himself, in a strange country. When he arrived where he wished to bo he \u25a0 felt rather disappointed. Every thing looked different; the tree's, the flowers, and the cows .were so big that he was almost afraid of them. He there fore remained sitting upon his rug and considered If it wasn't wiser to drive back to beautiful Aisha and see if /he couldn't get the ring back. Hardly had he. thought it out and snapped the whip before,- there he was, right in Aisha's room. She was sound asleep upon a costly Persian rug and never woke up for a. moment. "If. l have the girl I can't miss tho ring, either," thought the lad, so he shoved a piece of the magic rug underneath tho sleeper, snapped the whip. am) wished himself Into a far away lonely country. Instantly the rug began flying with them out of the window Into .1 desolate wilderness. The girl woke up and, of course, could not understand- what tha matter was. how on earth she came into this forsaken country, with the lad, beside her. But. being a woman, she quickly grasped thesituatlon. Again she started to talk, She chat ted and chatted. Indeed, she spoke so beautifully that the foolish lad onco The Natural History Mystery The principal of the Peterson prepar atory school had a penchant for dis tributing prizes. "Prizes mean parental pride and consequently more pounds and pence for me," he would tell him self. "The dear fathers and mothers Imagine their children progressing amazingly, and I get the credit and cash." ' And he was a wise principal, for when Willie, aged 6, returned home with an award for his scholarship his fond mamma beamed with maternal Joy. .'.'Splendid, my dearest pet!", she ex claimed. "Hut how did you gain it?" i; ("I( "I waa first in natural history," pro claimed the prodigy. !;;•'. !. "Natural history : at your, age?" ex claimed mamma, "How, did that hap pen?" "Oh, they asked me. how many legs a. horse has,"- answered Willie, "and I said five." "Flvel" crlfd niammai. "Hut a, hors* hasn't five legs child!" . "I know." explained Willie, "but all the other boy*- suid «U!" — Liverpool Mercury. riiore forgot. that It is better to -repent words not spoken than those said. Well,. he babbled out every single. thing there was to be! said about the, rug, and the whip. After that she was satis fied, pretended to be tired and went to "sleep. Ron a lons time the lad kept watching 1 , her and then went . to sleep, too. As soon as she. saw that he was really sound asleep she carefully pulled the rug out from under' him, se«ted herself commodiously upon it', snapped the whip, wishing herself in her fath er's house — and there she was! -The lad slept like a sack until morn ing. When he woke up he looked and looked.' But no matter how much and how long he looked there wus-no girl, no rug, no whip! And he didn't even know where he ' was. Nothing but thick wood all around and no. way out. He truly was angry beyond, saying. Sooti hunger commenced to bother him. so he forgot everything else but how and where, lie could get something to eat. Near by there was nothing what soever to be found, therefore ho ven tured deeper into the dark forest. After much hunting ho at. last found a path and beside it a pear treo, upon which were hanging most beautiful pears. Fie ate one, but hardly had ho eaten it when lie turned Into a donkey. "Now, that serves me right," ho said to himself. Carefully he walked on, as donkeys will do, rubbing himself at the stems of the trees, and ate what ever lie found on the ground. After a while he came to a sloe treo and nib bled from the sloes. And look! "In stantly he turned into his former fig ure. He liked that game greatly. Im mediately he ran back for more pears, <aad also.-' filled, his pockets with sloes. Tlren he walked on. The wood grew less dense and it seemed to him' he saw the minarots of the city in which Aisha lived. But a broad, rapid torrent pre vented him from* proceeding. He thought as a donkey ho could easily swim to the other "side, but then he would lose his fruits. As he was running up and down stream to find a sort of bridge a* powerful bird, as large as he had over seen, flow above his head. "Hallo, you," he called up to him, "you might carry me across the river, if you happen to have just a llttlo time." "What do you give me for it?" asked the bird. "I am a mighty poor fellow," said the lad, "and can give you nothing; but I will tell you a secret of the pears and sloes of this wood." ; The bird was satisfied and carried him across the river. Thereupon the lad told " A Trip on an Avalanche An avalanche is a largo body of snow or Ice sliding down a mountain, and sweeping everything bofore It. It la something like a landslip, such as somo of you may have seen when you have been staying at the seaside, where the cliffa are crumbling away; but an ava lanche is very much, bigger than laud slips of this description. Two w*>od cutters were descending the San Joris mountain on their sledgo laden with wood, when they: observed cracks appearing In the snow on either side of them, and know that they had started an avalanche. At first they enjoyed their novel ex perience of riding on an avalanche, and made jokes about their increase of speed, until they suddenly found that the enow had diverted its course, and was carrying them in the direction of a precipice. The man who was 'standing behind the sledge, steering it by moans of a long pole, immediately threw him self into the soft snow at the edge of the moving mass/, calling on his com panion 'to follow his example. * Doth men escaped with bruises, but the aledge disappeared over the precipice, and no trace of it was ever found. whnt he knew and also gave the bird a sloe, which he carried away In his beuk. ' All of' a sudden the lad heard an awful thunderstroke behind him. lie turned about and saw to his Inex pressible surprise that the bird had turned Into a handsome royal youth and the wlldcrncMH Into a lovely country with a wonderful large castle. Most happy to have broken an evil enchantment, 1 the lad wandered merrily on to the town where Aisha lived. Ar rived there, he put his pears Into a banket, put It upon his head na fruit sellers in Bosnia do, and going through the streets ho' shouted: "Pears for rich people! Each one a sovereign! Only the richest can buy. them!" The peo ple laughed at him, but he went his way, offering his fruits as loudly as he could. .- Now, of . course, Alnha heard his outcry, and, having gold in plenty she was eager to show the people that nobody but her could buy the pears with gold. So she sent down the maid and had her buy .up. -all the pears there were. She distributed them to the serv ants, and as it was very hot they, sat down in the courtyard and ate them •up at once. My proddness! In horrible surprise they looked at one another. All had become donkeys! They Jumped, about, kicked and cried '.'hee-hiiw, hee haw!" so that the whole town/ran to see. The people, who knew not where all these long ears had come , from so suddenly, laughed until they ' almost burst.- And the more desperately the .donkeys kicked about the more-every body, roared with laughter. Toward evening Aiaha'a father came home. He went all through the house and not a \u25a0 soul was in it.. Finally he came into the courtyard •' where all the donkeys were frantically; chasing to and fro. All surrounded him as though -jhey' • wanted^ -to ' spoak and say something, but -cftuld not. The wildest was a young ass, who pressed -.most desperately against him — and suddenly he guessed, all! Somebody had bewitched his whole';, household and the youngest animal was his beloved daughter, Aisha! He asked and asked how on earth it all hap pened, 'but, of course, got' no answer. That moment the fruit seller, passed by again, and seeing the father's dis tress he said he well knew a remedy to make them .turn human beings once • more, but first would have' to be done whatsoever he^ demanded. "And what is it?" asked the father; "Before anything is done you have to return what does not belong to you and is hidden lnyour house," said the lad. '.'[, k"now of nothing," cried 'Aisha's. father. "Well, then, I will search myself in your daughter's .room," declared the lad, "for unless I have found, the ring, the rug and the whip of the snake em peror. I simply won't help hen.. "But how will you help her?" asked the frightened father. "Just eat this," said the lad inno cently, /pulling a. sloe out of his pocket, "and she will be again what she w"as." No sooner< had lie said It/ than the cunning young: ass grabbed for thejsloe und quickly swallowed.it. • ; And there was .Aisha standing pur ring like a wildcat and crying: "Don't give him -anything! Don't give him anything!" A tub of water was stand ing near by. \_By chance -she' looked into it. and suddenly she gave a ter rible scroam — the ass 1 ears were there still! The lad had been holding fast to tho sloe, so'a piece had remained in • his fingers whit;h would have been just necessary for tho transformation of the ears. Now, nothing wafi left to the girl but to take to begging. Yet no matter ho vv sweetly and beautifully she talked she heard nothing but laughter to see her. ears wiggle back and forth. There wav nothing left but to give In. With a heavy heart sho handed him the rug, the ring and the whip. After that ho gave each of^the other donkeys-a sloe, and immediately they changed lnio human beings. Then he started to leave. Aishu. desperate about her ears, would not. let him go. She begged and im plored him to relievo her of those awful ears. At last he pulled out of his pocket a sloo and gavo It 'to her. She ato.lt But, goodness gracious! even now only one ear dropped off; the other waggled as lustily as before. The lad said that this was all he could do for her, und started to proceed home. She ought not to have eaten the first sloe o*ut of. his hand, and thus he wont away. What could sho do? She ran after him, crying and begging him not to leave her like that Now, since he had. made hor tho" laughing stock of tho town, hw also ought to marry her.: So she kept running and running after him. begging him to marry her.- "Oooil," ha said, standing still, "but wo will marry on the spot. And so It W£S. After f,he wedding he gave her tho last sloe to eat, which he had bid in his pocket, and Immediately the other ass ear fell off. The gifts of the amtko emperor, though; he never again let, out of his hand. Thus Aisha became an.obe dlent, humble wifci, for sho never, knew what might happen next. And af he Knew not .what, trick, sl|e # was going, to play on him, ho became more reason able and very cautious, and therefore they lived right happy and in peace to gether.