The poor queen did not wish to stay in the underworld, and who could blame her? It was a dismal place inhabited mostly by dragons, reptiles, and ravens.
A fairy in the shape of a lion was keeping her imprisoned there. She asked me how she might escape and I didn’t know, so I consulted my magic cap.
I took it off, laid in a box, and threw in some sprigs of juniper, some capers, and two peas. Then I murmured a few magic words into the box.
In a few moments, we heard a voice speak from the cap. “Fate, who rules all, forbids your leaving this place until the time when certain things are fulfilled. Instead, a gift will be given to the queen that will comfort her in her trouble.”
The queen was about to have a baby. She didn’t know it because she had been so distraught, but in a few days the most beautiful baby in the world was lying beside her!
Frog Friend in the Underworld in The Frog and the Lion Fairy, Orange Fairy Book. Picture by Joseph Kronheim.