The Fountain of Giant Land
The whole kingdom, however, mourned the loss of the little prince. The king and queen never gave up hoping that he would come back to them. The queen carefully laid away all the clothes which had belonged to the youngest prince so that they would be ready for him if he should return to the palace. Every day she shook them out with loving care, so that the baratas and white ants would not eat holes in them.
A year and a day flew swiftly by. The huge dragon which had guarded the fountain of Giantland escaped from her enchantment and was restored to the form of a beautiful princess.
The little old woman and the princess watched and waited for the return of the prince according to his promise. “Some evil must surely have befallen the lad,” said the little old woman. “Let us go in search of him. I know he was a lad who would not break his word.”
The little old woman and the beautiful princess who wore the prince’s own ring upon her finger came to the palace of the king. When the king had listened to the story they told, the guilty princes were called before him. They were forced to confess their evil deed. They were immediately thrown into prison. The anger of the whole kingdom was kindled against them.
Then the king and the queen and all the court sailed in their swiftest ships to the place where the little prince had been cast ashore. The little old woman and the beautiful princess who wore the prince’s own ring upon her finger went with them. At length after much searching they found the fisherman’s hut and the prince working for the fisherman.
The king and the queen and all the court wept tears of joy when they beheld the youngest prince alive and well. The queen wept again when she noticed the poor rough clothing which the prince was wearing. She had brought with her the prince’s favourite suit of cloth of gold which she had laid away carefully. When the prince put it on it was a trifle tight and a little bit too short for him, as he had grown so much in the year.