Sprightly Water,
Talking Bird, Singing Tree

ENVY destroys a family . . .

O

nce upon a time there were three farmer’s daughters, two were smart but the youngest was a simpleton. The three would tend their cows and daydream about marrying the king. One day the youngest declared that if the king was to marry her, she would give him three beautiful children. The king, passing by, heard her and took the girl for his wife.
            Soon after they married, the king departed for a year’s-long war, while his queen, at home, gave birth to two baby boys and a baby girl. The queen’s sisters, full of ENVY, cast the babies into the river, certain they would meet their deaths and in their place put puppies in the birthing bed, writing the king that their sister, the queen, was evil. The enraged king had his queen thrown into jail.
The queen’s children, though, lived, and were raised outside the castle. Years later, the sisters discovered the children thriving, and the elder, a sorceress, sent them on a perilous journey to find the three things that would bring them all their hearts desired — Sprightly Water, a Talking Bird, and a Singing Tree, thinking they would die trying to obtain them. Faith allowed the children to survive and to bring the treasures to the king’s garden, where he took pleasure watching the bottle of sprightly water become a beautiful fountain and a tiny sprig become a lush tree that played beautiful music. Then, the talking bird revealed the true identity of the children, the queen was released from prison, and the family reunited. The king ordered the envious sisters torn apart by four horses.