The Golden Mountain
The poor merchant's son took out stone and flint, struck it once and lo! two brave fellows were standing before him.
"What is thy wish? What are thy commands?" said they.
"Take me from this mountain down to the seashore."
And at once the two took hold of him and carefully brought him down.
Our hero walks along the shore. See there! a vessel comes sailing near the island.
"Ahoy! good people! take me along!"
"No time to stop!" And they went sailing by. But the winds arose and the tempest was heavy.
"It seems as if this fellow over there is not an ordinary man; we had better go back and take him along," decided the sailors.
They turned the prow toward the island, landed, took the merchant's son along with them and brought him to his native town.
It was a long time, or perhaps only a short time after—who could tell?—that one day the merchant's son took again his shovel and went to the market place in search of work.
The same very rich merchant came along in his gilded carriage; and, as of old, all the fellows who saw him coming rushed away.
The merchant's son remained alone.
"Will you be my workman?"
"I will at two hundred rubles a day. If so, let us to work."
"A rather expensive fellow."
"If too expensive go to others; get a cheap man. There were plenty of people, but when thou didst appear—thou seest thyself—not one is left."
"Well, all right. Come to-morrow to the landing place."
They met at the landing place, boarded a ship and sailed toward the island.
The first day they spent rather gayly, and on the second, master and workman went to work.
When they reached the golden mountain the rich, proud merchant treated his hired man to a tumbler.
"Before all, have a drink."
"Wait, master! thou art the head; thou must drink the first. Let me treat thee this time."
The young man had already prepared some of the drowsy stuff and he quickly mixed it with the wine and presented it to the master.
The proud merchant drank and fell sound asleep.
Our merchant's son killed a miserable old horse, cut it open, pushed his master and the shovel inside, sewed it all up and hid himself in the bushes.