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The three princesses in the blue mountain

First of all he had to try if he was able to swing the troll’s sword, which lay on the table; it was much larger and heavier than the first one; he was hardly able to move it. He then took three draughts from the horn and he could then lift it, and when he had taken three more he could handle it as if it were a rolling pin.

Shortly afterwards he heard a heavy, rumbling noise that was quite terrible, and directly afterwards a troll with six heads came in.

“Ugh, ugh!” he said as soon as he got his noses inside the door. “I smell Christian blood and bone in my house.”

“Yes, just think! A raven came flying past here with a thigh-bone, which he dropped down the chimney,” said the Princess. “I threw it out, but the raven brought it back again. At last I got rid of it and made haste to clean the room, but I suppose the smell is not quite gone,” she said.

“No, I can smell it well,” said the troll; but he was tired and put his heads in the Princess’s lap, and she went on scratching them till they all fell a-snoring. Then she called the hens, and the soldier came and cut off all the six heads as if they were set on cabbage stalks.

She was no less glad than her elder sister, as you may imagine, and danced and sang; but in the midst of their joy they remembered their youngest sister. They went with the soldier across a large courtyard, and, after walking through many, many rooms, he came to the hall of gold where the third sister was.

She sat at a golden spinning-wheel spinning gold yarn, and the room from ceiling to floor glistened and glittered till it hurt one’s eyes.

“Heaven preserve both you and me, what do you want here?” said the Princess. “Go, go, else the troll will kill us both.”

“Just as well two as one,” answered the soldier. The Princess cried and wept; but it was all of no use, he must and would remain. Since there was no help for it he would have to try if he could use the troll’s sword on the table in the front hall. But he was only just able to move it; it was still larger and heavier than the other two swords.

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