My brothers call me Cinderlad because I like to tend the fire. Well, they may call me what they will, but they were too scared to spend St. John’s night in the barn, and watch to see how the grass disappeared.
I got into the barn and lay down, and after about an hour’s time, a rumbling and creaking began. It was frightful to hear it. Well, if it gets no worse than that, I can manage to stand it, I thought.
In a little time the creaking began again, and the earth quaked so that all the hay flew around me. Oh! if it gets no worse than that I can manage to stand it, I thought. Then came a third rumbling, and a third earthquake, so violent that I thought the walls and roof would fall down, but then everything suddenly grew as still as death around me.
I was pretty sure it would come again, but it did not. Everything was quiet, and everything stayed quiet, and after a short time I heard something that sounded as if a horse were standing chewing just outside the barn door. I crept to the door, which was ajar, to see what was there. A horse stood eating. I had never seen a horse so big and fat and fine! A saddle and bridle lay upon it, and a complete suit of armor for a knight, and everything was made of copper and shone brightly.
“Ha, ha! it is you who has been eating our hay then,” I said. I was soon riding the horse away to a place that no one knew but myself.