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Main > Fairy tale > All authors > Astrid Lindgren > Fairy tale "The Brothers Lionheart"

The Brothers Lionheart

Of course, it was harder to remember exactly terrible the dream had been, but that Jonathan had cried out for help I couldn’t forget. My brother had called for me, so didn’t I have to go out and try to find him?

I sat for hours out with my rabbits and thought about what I should do. I had no one to talk to, no one to ask. I had to decide for myself. I couldn’t go to Sofia because she would stop me. She would never let me go; she was not that foolish. For it was foolish, I’m sure, what I wanted to do. And dangerous too. The most dangerous thing of all. And I wasn’t at all brave.

I don’t know how long I sat there, leaning against the stable wall, tearing up grass. I tore off every blade of grass round about me, but I didn’t notice until afterward, not while I’d been sitting there being tormented. The hours went by; perhaps I would be sitting there still, if I hadn’t suddenly remembered what Jonathan had said--that sometimes you have to do things that are dangerous; otherwise you weren’t a human being but a bit of filth.

So I decided. I banged my fist down on the rabbit hutch so that the rabbits jumped, and I said out loud so there would be no mistake.

“I’ll do it! I’ll do it! I’m not a bit of filth.”

Oh, how good it felt to have decided!

“I know I’m right,” I said to the rabbits, for I had no one else to talk to.

The rabbits--well, they’d have to become wild rabbits now. I took them out of the hutch and carried them in my arms to the gate and showed them the lovely green Cherry Valley.

“The whole valley is full of grass,” I said, “and there are lots of other rabbits you can be with there. I think you’ll have much more fun than in a hutch, but just watch out for the fox and Hubert.”

The three of them seemed a little surprised and scampered about a bit as if they were wondering whether this could possibly be right. But then they made off and vanished in a flash among the green hummocks.

Then I hurried to get things ready, gathering together everything I was to take with me.

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