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got you now, Treasurer in the Green Pine Wood? And now I will have my third wish, and you shall grant it. I demand on the spot two hundred thousand dollars in hard cash, and a house and-ah, dear me!" he uttered, wringing his hands, for the little forest man had changed into hot burning glass, and burned in his hand like sputtering fire. Nothing more of the little man was seen.

His swollen hand reminded him for several days of his ingratitude and foolishness. He then, however, stifled his conscience, and said: "And even if they sell my glassfactory and everything, yet Fat Ezekiel is left to me. As long as he has money on Sunday, I shall not want.”

Quite true, Peter! But suppose all his money goes? So it happened one day, and it was a remarkable arithmetical example. One Sunday Peter drove up to the inn; people were putting their heads out of the windows, when one said: "Gambling Peter is coming," and another said: "Yes, the Dance-room Emperor, the rich glass-maker;" a third shook his head and said: "People talk a great deal about his wealth, and all sorts of things are in circulation as regards his debts; " and some one in the town said: "The bailiff will not much longer delay in laying hold of his property.'


In the meantime the wealthy Peter politely and majestically saluted the guests at the window, alighted from his carriage, and exclaimed: "Good evening, landlord of the Sun Hotel, Has the Stout Ezekiel already arrived?" and a deep voice said: "Come in, Peter! your place has been reserved for you; we are all here and have already commenced playing at cards." Thus Peter Munk entered the tap-room, and putting his hands immediately into his pockets, noticed that Ezekiel must be well supplied with money, for his pockets were filled up to the brim.

He sat down at the table with the others and played, winning and losing every now and then; and thus they played until night time, when all respectable people went home, and until two other gamblers said: "It is enough now, we must go home to wife and child." Gambling Peter, however, requested Fat Ezekiel to remain. For a long time he refused; at last, however he cried: "All

right, I will just count my money, and then we will gamble five florins a point, for lower is only child's play."

He pulled out his purse and counted five hundred florins in hard cash; and Gambling Peter knew now how much he had himself, and had no occasion to count. If Ezekiel had won before, he now lost every point, and swore terribly into the bargain. If he threw a triplet, Gambling Peter threw one too, and always two pips higher. He now put his last five florins on the table and exclaimed: "Once more, and if I lose again, I shall not leave off after all, and you must lend me some of your winnings, Peter, for one honest man helps the other!"

"As much as you like, and even it be a hundred florins,” said the Dance-room Emperor, rejoicing at his gain; and Fat Ezekiel, shaking the dice, threw fifteen." A triplet!" he exclaimed, now we shall see!" Peter, however, threw eighteen, and a hoarse familiar voice behind him said: "Well, that was the last."

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He turned round, and the gigantic Dutch Michael stool behind him. Frightened, he dropped the money which he had already taken up. Fat Ezekiel, however, did not see the Master of the Wood, but asked Gambling Peter to advance him ten florins to play with. Half dreaming, the latter put his hand into his pocket, but there was no money; he searched the other pocket, but there too was no money; he turned his coat inside out, but not one single red farthing fell out, and now, only, he remembered his first wish, namely, always to have as much money as Fat Ezekiel. All had disappeared like smoke.

The innkeeper and Ezekiel looked at him in astonishment, as he kept on seeking for his money, but could not find it. They would not believe that he had no more. When, however, they at last searched his pockets themselves, they became angry and swore that Gambling Peter was a wicked enchanter, and had sent all the money that he had gained home by enchantment. Peter defended himself bravely, but appearances were against him.

Ezekiel said he would relate the frightful story to all the people in the Black Forest; and the innkeeper promised him that he would go into the town early on the following

day to accuse Peter Munk of being an enchanter, and live, he added, to see him burnt. They then attacked him furiously, tore his jacket from off his body, and threw him out of doors.

No star shone in the sky when Peter sorrowfully stole towards his home; but nevertheless he could recognise a dark figure going along with him, who at last said: "It is all over with you, Peter Munk; all your splendour has come to an end, and I might have told you that at a time when you would have nothing to do with me, but ran to the stupid Glass dwarf. Now you see what people get when they despise my advice. But just give me a trial; I pity your fate. Nobody has ever repented who has applied to me, and if you are not afraid of the way, all day to-morrow I shall be at your service in the pinewood if you call me." Peter perceived indeed who was thus addressing him, but he was so overcome with horror, that he said nothing, but ran towards his house.

At these words the story-teller was interrupted by a noise outside the inn; a carriage was heard to drive up; several voices cried out for lights, and a loud knocking at the back door, intermingled with the howling of several dogs. The room which had been given to the carrier and the apprentice lads looked out on the road; the four guests jumped up and ran to it to see what had happened. What they were able to see by the light of a lantern, was a large travelling carriage standing before the inn; a tall man was just engaged in helping two ladies closely veiled to alight from the carriage, and a coachman in livery was seen to unharness the horses, a servant however unbuckled the straps of the trunk. "May God be gracious to them," sighed the carrier. "If these people escape from this inn with whole skins, I need have no more anxiety as regards my cart."


Silence!" whispered the student. "I have an idea that the robbers are not lying in wait for us but for these ladies. Very likely they have already been informed of their journey by the people of the inn. If it were only possible to warn them! But stop! There is not one decent room in the whole inn for the ladies, except the one next to mine.

They are sure to take them there; you remain quietly in this room, and I will endeavour to inform the servants."

The young man crept to his room, extinguishing the candles, only leaving the candle burning which had been given him by the innkeeper's wife, and then listened at the door.

The innkeeper's wife, together with the ladies, soon after came up-stairs, and conducting them with kind and gentle words to the room close by, she persuaded her guests to retire soon, for she said they must be fatigued after their journey. She then went downstairs again. Soon after the student heard a man's heavy footstep coming up stairs. He cautiously opened the door, and perceived through a little crack the tall man who had assisted the ladies to alight from the carriage. He wore a hunter's costume, a cutlass by his side, and was probably the courier or attendant of the lady guests. When the student perceived that he had come upstairs alone, he quickly opened the door, and beckoned to the man to enter the room.

Astonished, the latter approached, and before he was able to ask what was wanted of him, the other whispered to him, "Sir, you have fallen to-night into an inn of robbers."

The man started. The student drew him completely into his room, and told him how suspicious things seemed in this house.

The courier became very serious on hearing this. He told the young man that the ladies, a Countess and her maid, had at first intended to travel all night, but about half an hour's distance from this inn a horseman had met them, who had spoken to them, and asked them whither they were travelling, On being told that they intended to travel all night through the Spessart, he had dissuaded them, on account of its being somewhat unsafe at the present time.

"If you attach any value to the advice of an honest man,” he had added, "give up your intention, for there is not far from here an inn, and however bad and uncomfortable it may be, you had better pass the night there than run any unnecessary danger in this dark night."

The man who had thus advised them had had a very honest, trustworthy appearance; and the Countess, fearing an attack of robbers, had ordered to put up at this inn.

The courier considered it his duty to inform the ladies of the danger to which they were exposed. He went into the other room, and soon after opened the door which led from the Countess's room to that of the student. The Countess, a lady about forty years of age, stepped out towards the student pale with terror, and had everything once again repeated. They then consulted what was to be done in this awkward position, and resolved as quietly as possible to fetch the two servants, the carrier, and the apprentice lads, in order to be able at any rate to offer a resistance in case of an attack.

When this had been done, the Countess's room was locked towards the passage, and barricaded with chests of drawers and chairs. She sat down with her maid upon her bed, and the two servants kept watch near her. The earlier guests, however, together with the courier, seated themselves in the student's room at the table, and resolved to await the danger. It might probably be now ten o'clock; all was quiet in the house, and no signs were made to disturb the guests, when the compass-maker said, "In order to keep awake, the best thing for us to do would be to sit all together again as before. We were relating all sorts of stories we know, and if you, Mr. Courier, have no objection, we might continue."

The courier besides raising no objection to it, expressed his willingness to tell them a story himself, and he thus began:


At the time of Harun Al-Raschid, the ruler of Bagdad, there lived in Balsora a man named Benezar. He had just wealth enough to allow him to live comfortably and quietly without carrying on a business or a trade. Also, when a son was born to him, he did not change his mode of living. "Why should I haggle or trade in my old age," he said to his neighbour, "in order to leave perhaps a few

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