Soria Moria Castle
But there after a while, Halvor went about, and was so strange and dull and silent. Then the Princesses asked him what he lacked, and if he didn’t like to live with them any longer? Yes, he did, for they had enough and to spare, and he was well off in every way, but still somehow or other he did so long to go home, for his father and mother were alive, and them he had such a great wish to see.
Well, they thought that might be done easily enough.
“You shall go thither and come back hither, safe and unscathed, if you will only follow our advice,” said the Princesses.
Yes, he’d be sure to mind all they said. So they dressed him up till he was as grand as a king’s son, and then they set a ring on his finger, and that was such a ring, he could wish himself thither and hither with it; but they told him to be sure and not take it off, and not to name their names, for there would be an end of all his bravery, and then he’d never see them more.
“If I only stood at home I’d be glad,” said Halvor; and it was done as he had wished. Then stood Halvor at his father’s cottage door before he knew a word about it. Now it was about dusk at even, and so, when they saw such a grand stately lord walk in, the old couple got so afraid they began to bow and scrape. Then Halvor asked if he couldn’t stay there, and have a lodging there that night. No; that he couldn’t.
“We can’t do it at all,” they said, “for we haven’t this thing or that thing which such a lord is used to have; ’twere best your lordship went up to the farm, no long way off, for you can see the chimneys, and there they have lots of everything.”
Halvor wouldn’t hear of it—he wanted to stop; but the old couple stuck to their own, that he had better go to the farmer’s; there he would get both meat and drink; as for them, they hadn’t even a chair to offer him to sit down on.
“No,” said Halvor, “I won’t go up there till to-morrow early, but let me just stay here to-night; worst come to the worst, I can sit in the chimney corner.