I was sitting on an old tree stump when the soldier approached. He had nothing–not a penny to his name–but he had the most charming and fearless spirit.
He shook my hand and stretched himself out on the grass by my side. “I see you’ve got good boots, well blacked,” he said, “but if you had to travel as much as I have, they wouldn’t keep their shine. Look at mine, they’re made of buffalo-leather. I’ve worn them for a long time, but in them I can go through thick and thin.”
Indeed, I thought to myself, here is a fellow who knows what he’s talking about. After a while, the soldier became ravenous and said, “I can stay no longer, Brother Brightboots. Where does this road lead to?”
I didn’t know myself, but when he got up, I rose too. I might be a king but here was a man to follow.
Brother Brightboots in The Boots of Buffalo-Leather, Grimms. Illustration by Josef Scharl.