The Bridge Story ID - Page 5

She dug at it until it turned into a great big hole, big enough to enter. When she walked through it, she came into a room where she saw two cooked doves, piping hot sitting on a cabinet. She took them and ate them. The next day she found two more and did the same. The third day she grew curious about who was bringing these doves, so she made her way into the adjacent room, but she didn’t see anybody. She went into a third room, and there she saw – you can’t imagine it! She saw a lovely woman, beautiful as the sun, and all in chains. “ How did you get there?” Asked the woman. “Who brought you?”

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The chamber under the Fountain

Ut dapibus varius sapien

I am under the control of the Fairy

So the princess recounted her entire story from beginning to end. “ Do you realize?” said the woman “ that you’re my sister? I’m the daughter of the king of Spain.” Well you have would loved to have seen it, the two of them embracing kissing one another and crying out of sheer joy. When they finished the sister in chains said : “ it’s the fairies that have me in their power. You must go to our father and tell him that if he wants to free me he has to have eight matrons with flower and powerful incense and ten men of marvellous strength, each strong enough to hold and swing a hundred pound hammer to crack the skulls of whomever I say.” They kissed again and the sister who have been punished went back to underground chamber. When the servant came to bring her food she insisted she had to speak to the king. He agreed and when they were alone, she proposed that, if he promised to grant her freedom, she would bring back his daughter who had been taken by fairies, as well as his other daughter who had run away.

The king could hardly believe he was hearing such a promise. Not only would he grant her freedom he replied he would also give her whatever else she wanted. She answered she needed eight matrons with flowers and powerful incense, and ten men of marvellous strength, each strong enough to hold and swing a hundred pound hammer. The king ordered all of this to be prepared without the slightest delay. While these preparation were being made, the king’s of Portugal son, who had been vexed when he found out that the doll had been taken from him, arrived in Spain and went directly to the royal court. Meanwhile, the king’s daughter had the eight matrons and ten powerful men come down to her room beneath the fountain and this is what she did: she took the matrons with their canisters of flowers and incense that smelled so sweet as to seem paradisiacal and placed them in front. Behind them she arranged the men who had their hammers ready at hand. The fairies smelling the lovely aroma, lost their senses, and at that very moment the strong men swung the hammers and cracked their skulls. Once the king’s imprisoned daughters was set free, they took her out of that dark underground place and brought her to her father the king. You can’t imagine what a celebration the king held! At the height of festivities he sent for the doorkeeper again and said her: “ now I want you to find my other daughter for me”. “ You’re talking to the very daughter you’re seeking” she answered. At last the king recognized her and begun hugging and kissing her. Now the celebration grew and grew, and when the festivities were at their height the prince of Portugal entered and asked, Princess aren’t you the one who owned the doll, the one I stole? “ Yes” she answered. Then he turned to the king of Spain and said: “ Your majesty, I am the son of the king of Portugal, and I’m in love with your daughter. Therefor I’m asking for her hand in marriage.” “ You have my consent” replied the king, so they married. So they remained content and at peace.

Told by Rosa Brusca in Palermo