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Main > Chinese folktales > Fairy tale "The Dragon-Princess"

The Dragon-Princess

The emperor was greatly pleased, and announced a large reward for the man who was competent to go to the dragon-castle as his messenger.

The first man to come forward was named So Pi-Lo. But the wise man said: “A great-great-great-great-grandfather of yours once slew more than a hundred of the dragons of the Eastern Sea, and was finally himself slain by the dragons. The dragons are the enemies of your family and you cannot go.”

Then came a man from Canton, Lo-Dsi-Tschun, with his two brothers, who said that his ancestors had been related to the Dragon-King. Hence they were well liked by the dragons and well known to them. They begged to be entrusted with the message.

The wise man asked: “And have you still in your possession the stone which compels the dragons to do your will?”

“Yes,” said they, “we have brought it along with us.”

The wise man had them show him the stone; then he spoke: “This stone is only obeyed by the dragons who make clouds and send down the rain. It will not do for the dragons who guard the pearls of the sea-king.” Then he questioned them further: “Have you the dragon-brain vapor?”

When they admitted that they had not, the wise man said: “How then will you compel the dragons to yield their treasure?”

And the emperor said: “What shall we do?”

The wise man replied: “On the Western Ocean sail foreign merchants who deal in dragon-brain vapor. Some one must go to them and seek it from them. I also know a holy man who is an adept in the art of taming dragons, and who has prepared ten pounds of the dragon-stone. Some one should be sent for that as well.”

The emperor sent out his messengers. They met one of the holy man’s disciples and obtained two fragments of dragon-stone from him.

Said the wise man: “That is what we want!”

Several more months went by, and at last a pill of dragon-brain vapor had also been secured. The emperor felt much pleased and had his jewelers carve two little boxes of the finest jade. These were polished with the ashes of the Wutung-tree.

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