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Pippi Longstocking

"There now, I've saved a visit to the hairdresser," she said contentedly when at last she came up for air. She stepped out of the pool and put on her shoe. Then they went off to hunt for Mr. Nilsson.

"Hear how it squishes when I walk," laughed Pippi. "It says 'klafs, klafs' in my dress and 'squish, squish' in my shoes. Isn't that jolly? I think you ought to try it too," she said to Annika, who was walking along beside her, with her lovely flaxen hair, pink dress, and little white kid shoes.

"Some other time," said the sensible Annika.

They walked on.

"Mr. Nilsson certainly can be exasperating," said Pippi. "He's always doing things like this. Once in Arabia he ran away from me and took a position as a maidservant to an elderly widow. That last was a lie, of course," she added after a pause.

Tommy suggested they all three go in different directions and hunt. At first Annika didn't want to because she was a little afraid, but Tommy said, "You aren't a 'fraidy cat, are you?" And, of course, Annika couldn't tolerate such an insult, so off they all went.

Tommy went through a field. Mr. Nilsson he did not find, but he did find something else. A bull! Or to be more exact, the bull found Tommy. And the bull did not like Tommy, for he was a very cross bull who was not at all fond of children. With his head down he charged toward Tommy, bellowing fearfully. Tommy let out a terrified shriek that could be heard all through the woods. Pippi and Annika heard it and came running to see what was the matter. By that time the bull had almost reached Tommy who had fallen head over heels over a stump.

"What a stupid bull!" said Pippi to Annika, who was crying uncontrollably. "He ought to know he can't act like that. He'll get Tommy's white sailor suit all dirty. I'll have to go and talk some sense into the stupid animal."

And off she started. She ran up and pulled the bull by the tail. "Forgive me for breaking up the party," she said. Since she had given his tail a good hard pull, the bull turned around and saw a new child to catch on his horns.

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Category: Norway folktales
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