How Six Men got on in the World
Soldiers cheated of pay go to the king, solve set samples, get all his treasure, which they finally share.
Once upon a time there was a man who knew all kinds of arts; he served in the war, and behaved well and bravely, but when the war was over, he was given a farewell and three heller pay on the way. Wait,' he said, 'I will not put up with this: if I find the right people, the king shall give me the treasures of the whole country. Then he went into the forest in anger, and saw one standing there who had plucked up six trees as if they were stalks of grain. He said to him, 'Will you be my servant and go with me?' 'Yes,' he answered, 'but first I want to bring home my mother's wave of wood,' and he took one of the trees and wrapped it around the five others, lifted the wave on his shoulder and carried it away. Then he came again, and went with his master, who said, 'I suppose we two ought to go all over the world.' And when they had gone a little while, they found a hunter lying on his knees, with his rifle on and aiming. Said the gentleman to him 'Hunter, what wilt thou shoot?' He answered: "Two miles from here there is a fly sitting on the branch of an oak tree, I want to shoot out its left eye. Oh, go with me," said the man, "when the three of us are together, we should be able to get all over the world.
The hunter was ready and went with him, and they came to seven windmills, whose wings were drifting very hastily, and yet there was no wind to the left and right, and not a leaf was moving. Then the man said, 'I don't know what makes the windmills go, there is not a breath of air,' and went on with his servants, and when they had gone two miles, they saw one sitting on a tree, holding one nostril shut and blowing from the other. 'My, what are you doing up there?" asked the man. He answered, 'Two miles from here are seven windmills; look, I am blowing on them to make them run.' 'O, go with me,' said the man, 'if the four of us are together, we should probably get through the whole world.' Then the blower descended and went along, and for a while they saw one standing there on one leg, with the other unbuckled and laid beside him. Then the master said, "You have made yourself comfortable to rest. I am a runner,' he answered, 'and so that I do not jump too fast, I have unbuckled one leg; when I run with two legs, I go faster than a bird flies. Oh, go with me, when the five of us are together, we should be able to go all over the world. So he went along, and not long after, they met one who had a little hat on, but it was sitting completely on one ear. Then the master said to him, 'Mannerly! Mannerly! don't hang your hat on one ear, you look like a fool.' 'I mustn't do it,' said the other, 'for if I put my hat on straight, a violent frost will come, and the birds under the sky will freeze to death and fall to the earth.' Oh, go with me," said the Lord, "when the six of us are together, we should be able to go through the whole world.
Now the six of them went to a town where the king had announced that whoever would run in a bet with his daughter and win would become her husband; but whoever would lose would also have to give up his head. Then the man spoke up and said 'but I will let my servant run for me'. The king replied, "Then you must also pledge his life, so that his head and yours are liable for the victory. When this was agreed and made firm, the man strapped the other leg to the runner and said to him 'now be quick and help us to win'. It was determined that whoever first brought water from a far away well would be the winner. Now the runner got a jug, and the king's daughter also one, and they began to run at the same time: but in a moment, when the king's daughter was only a short distance away, no spectator could see the runner anymore, and it was no different than if the wind had rushed past. In a short time he arrived at the well, scooped up a jug full of water and turned back. In the middle of the way home he was overcome by tiredness, so he put the jug down, lay down and fell asleep. He had made a horse's skull, which was lying on the ground, into a pillow, so that he would lie down hard and soon wake up. Meanwhile the king's daughter, who could also walk as well as an ordinary man, had reached the well, and hurried back with her pitcher of water; and when she saw the runner lying there and sleeping, she was glad and said 'the enemy is given into my hands,' emptied his pitcher and jumped on. Now all would have been lost, if it had not been for the good fortune of the huntsman, who stood on top of the castle with his sharp eyes and watched everything. Then he said, "The king's daughter should not rise against us," loaded his rifle and shot so skillfully that he blew the horse's skull out from under the runner's head without hurting him. Then the runner woke up, jumped up and saw that his jug was empty and the king's daughter was already far ahead. But he did not lose heart, ran back to the well with the jug, drew water again and was home ten minutes sooner than the king's daughter. You see," he said, "now I've picked up my legs, before it wasn't walking at all.
But it grieved the king, and his daughter even more, that such a common abdicated soldier should carry her away; they conferred with each other how they could get rid of him and his companions. Then the king said to her, "I have found a means, do not be afraid, they shall not come home again. And he said to them, "You shall now have fun together, eat and drink," and he led them to a room that had a floor of iron, and the doors were also of iron, and the windows were guarded with iron bars. In the room there was a table set with delicious food, and the king said to them, "Go in and enjoy yourselves. And when they were inside, he had the door closed and locked. Then he sent for the cook and ordered him to light a fire under the room until the iron was red-hot. This the cook did, and it started, and the six in the room, while they were sitting at the table, became quite warm, and they thought it was from the food; but when the heat grew greater and greater, and they wanted to go out, but found the door and window locked, then they realized that the king had evil in mind and wanted to suffocate them. But he shall not succeed," said the one with the little hat, "I will let a frost come, before which the fire shall be ashamed and hide. So he set his little hat straight, and immediately a frost fell so that all the heat disappeared and the food on the dishes began to freeze. When a few hours had passed, and the king thought they had died in the heat, he had the door opened and wanted to check on them himself. But when the door opened, all six of them were standing there, fresh and healthy, and they said that they would like to go out and warm themselves, because the food was sticking to the dishes in the very cold room. Then the king, full of anger, went down to the cook, scolded him and asked why he had not done what he had been ordered to do. But the cook answered, "There is plenty of embers, just see for yourself. Then the king saw that a huge fire was burning under the iron room and realized that he could not harm the six in this way.
Now the king thought again how to get rid of the evil guests, sent for the master and said 'If you want to take gold and give up your right to my daughter, you shall have as much as you want'. 'O yes, lord king,' he answered, 'give me as much as my servant can carry, and I will not ask for your daughter.' The king was satisfied, and he said, 'I will come and get it in two weeks.' Then he summoned all the tailors from all over the kingdom, and they had to sit for fourteen days and sew a sack. And when he had finished, the strong one who could pluck out trees had to take the sack on his shoulder and go with it to the king. Then the king said 'what is this mighty fellow who carries the house-sized bale of linen on his shoulder?' He was frightened and thought 'what gold will he carry away!' Then he ordered a ton of gold to be brought, which sixteen of the strongest men had to carry, but the strong man grabbed it with one hand, put it into the sack and said, "Why don't you bring more, it barely covers the ground. Then the king had all his treasure brought in one by one, which the strong man pushed into the sack, and the sack was not yet half full. Bring more,' he shouted, 'these few lumps are not enough. Then seven thousand wagons of gold had to be brought together from all over the kingdom, and the strong man pushed them into his sack with the oxen harnessed to them. I will not look at it long,' he said, 'and I will take what comes, so that the sack will be full. When everything was stacked in the sack, a lot still went in, he said, "I just want to put an end to this thing, you can tie a sack once, even if it is not yet full. Then he hoisted it on his back and went away with his companion.
When the king saw how the only man in the whole country carried away wealth, he was angry and ordered his cavalry to mount up and chase after the six, and they were ordered to take the sack back from the strong man. Two regiments soon caught up with them and called out to them, 'You are prisoners, put down the sack of gold or you will be beaten up. What do you say?' said the bugler, 'we are prisoners? rather you should all dance around in the air,' he held one nostril closed and blew with the other at the two regiments, so they drove away from each other and into the blue air over all mountains, one here, the other there. One sergeant called for mercy, saying he had nine wounds and was a good fellow who did not deserve the scolding. Then the blower let up a little, so that he came down again without harm, then he said to him 'now go home to the king and say he should only send more cavalry, I wanted to blow them all up'. The king, hearing the news, said 'let these guys go, they have something on them'. So the six brought home the wealth, divided it among themselves and lived happily ever after.