The Princess with the Empty Treasure Chest
Soft beams of light filtered through the trees into the tiny windows of the cabin. A cacophony of bird songs woke the princess up, making her smile even before she opened her eyes. At moments like this she felt more fortunate than she ever did, even when she had a soft bed and gem-studded gowns.
“Breakfast is ready,” a soft voice sang.
The Princess, who had temporarily forgotten her guest, jumped up and snatched a club close to her bed, ready to fend the attack.
“My, my,” the tiny woman said. “You do wake up feisty. Are you always this jumpy?”
“So…sorry,” the Princess apologized. “I’ve been alone for so long, that I don’t expand the sound of another person’s voice!”
“There’s warm water in the washing basin and breakfast is ready,” the tiny woman said.
The Princess could not believe her eyes.
The old stone basin was steaming with warm water. How did the tiny woman heat it? The Princess looked around and saw two iron pots hanging from an iron rod above the fire. The rod seemed familiar.
The Princess finally recognized where she had seen it. It was one of four old pokers she had found laying around the dirt floor of the cabin. They were probably from a fire poker set, as she also found a small broom and pan, which she uses for sweeping off the surface dirt.
But how on earth had she managed to suspend that poker? The Princess followed the horizontal line of the poker to the edges and saw that it was suspended by one iron poker at each extreme, running vertically and stuck on the smooth stone button of the heart.
She could not resist the curiosity and examined the setup. The tiny woman had found a hole on each side of the stone hearth; just where the stones met. Each hole was just big enough to hold a poker. She had then used the arrow-shaped end to hold the third poker horizontally.
“How smart!” the Princess congratulated.
“Thanks,” the tiny woman said. “In my long life I have found that ~with a bit of ingenuity~ we already have the tools we need to do what needs to be done.”