ine ialdwm Library
-homes of other people.
I.; Jack was lively and full of fun, perhaps a little care-
|s and heedless; and so caused his mother some anxiety
A7at times, but was smart, good hearted, and always happy.
Just at the time this story opens, which was ages
ago, the widow and her son were very poor, so poor that
when the storm came that destroyed their little garden,
they were left without anything to eat.
Jack did not trouble about this, but his mother
knew they must sell their good, fat, spotted cow, to get
food for the coming winter, as she thought Jack too small
a boy to get a living for them both; so she sent
him away with the cow to the market town and told
him to get as much as he could for her, as they must
have enough to last them until next summer brought a
crop from the little garden.
Leading the good, spotted cow, Jack went merrily
along, until he met a jolly peddler, who was singing a
comic song as he tossed some bright colored beans
from hand to hand.
Jack took a great fancy to these beans, and asked
the peddler if he would give him some.
"That I will," said the peddler, "all I have of them, if
you will hand me over the good, spotted cow you have there."
"Done," said Jack, as he handed the halter to the jolly
Jack was full of glee, as he went back toward his home
with his hat full of shining beans, that seemed to sparkle
and glow with color, as he ran his fingers through them,
to catch the light.
When his poor mother heard what Jack had done she
was very sad and angry with the heedless boy and giving
his hat a knock, she sent the bright beans far and wide,
about the yard, in all directions, and they were lost among
the weeds and grass, so they had not even a bean to show
for their good old spotted cow, of which the widow had
hoped so much.
That night Jack was sent to bed without his supper,
and with the dark, sadness settled down about the lonely
When Jack put his head out of the window the next
morning, he was surprised to find that a mighty bean vine
had sprung up from the yard where the beans had fallen,
and was growing fast toward the sky.
He rushed down stairs and out of the door where his
mother stood, and springing into the lower branches of the
bean vine, up he went, above the window, above the door,
and finally out of sight, being lost to his mother's view
in the twigs and leaves overhead. Vainly she called him
to come back; he was so excited he did not hear her voice;
but mounted higher and higher at every step, and soon
pushed past the white clouds that drifted across the sky.
The widow sat down and wept in her despair, for
she thought, her last and greatest treasure was gone forever.
Meanwhile Jack climbed and climbed, until he was
ouf.f sight of the cottage, and even the earth was blotted
I.out beneath him, as the silver lined clouds drifted
about the vine below.
|M On went Jack it seemed to him for half a day.
Never tiring, he climbed with stout heart and
sturdy limbs till finally the top of the vine went
r ,over the edge of a new
and strange land above
the sky, and Jack
stepped out upon a
curious bleak and
A jagged road led
from where he stood,
to a bare and lonely castle upon a
Suddenly beside him there appeared
a strange looking, little old lady, who
had a most kindly face, but who
looked severely at Jack.
"Good morning," said Jack, po-
It's afternoon," said the little
old lady, as she looked the boy over
from head to foot, "who are you, and what are you
"I'm Jack, and I'm just looking around," he answered,
"can I do anything for you?"
"No," she said, as her face softened, "but you can
do much for yourself. Jack, I am your good fairy, and
I sent you the magic beans, that grew into this wonderful
bean vine. Now pay attention, and do as I tell you, and
all will be well.
"In yonder castle lives a giant; a great, big, burly
fellow, who scares everyone, and threatens to eat them;
this he never has done yet, and he never will do; he is
nothing but a big, boasting bully. Years ago he stole
from your father a great lot of money, and I want you
to go and get it back.
"Don't be afraid of him, but put on a bold front,
and you will get your own from this big fellow.
"If you need help, I will help you."
With this she kissed her hand to Jack, courtesied, aqxt i
Jack did exactly as he was told, and marched with ( _
steady step to the door of the castle, and rapped loudly.
He had no sooner done so than the door flew open, and
he was in a long and gloomy hall, at the end of which,
was the giant, seated at a table.
The giant was very tall and looked terribly fierce.
When he saw Jack approaching he began to breathe hard
through his teeth, and pound the floor with the great club
he held in his right hand.
But Jack, mindful of what was told him, sprang
boldly forward, and, with a hop, skip and a jump, was
beside the giant on the table; with another leap he was
on the bottom of the giant's cup which stood, up side down
before him, and so was on a level with the giant's face.
The giant was surprised at this sudden move; but,
catching his breath, he gave a terrible roar, that made the
windows and doors rattle, shouting in a voice of thunder:
"I'LL EAT YOU UPI"
"No you won't, either," shouted Jack, as loud as he
could, as he shook his finger under the astonished giant's
nose, "and what is more, you will not eat anybody else
up! I know you, and all about you, and I am tired of
your nonsense. You are a big bluffer, and you can't scare
me a bit. I am here to take you down a peg, an
teach you to be decent, and what is more, I want the
money you stole from my father: do you understand?"
Jack paused for breath, but he kept the giant pinned
with his eagle eye.
A great change came over the giant, in a moment
he was as meek as a lamb, he gasped out:
"Well! well well! it is fear-
ful to be talked to like this, after
having my own way for so many
years, I don't know what to do!"
"I'll tell you
what to do," said
Jack, "you give up
that money, or
you'll come down
to earth, go to
work, and be
spent all the
money said the
giant, and he
are a nice man,"
said Jack, "the
only thing you can
do is to take up that ax in the corner,
pack your grip, and come with me, and
I will make a man of you."
"All right," said the giant, "I
know I have been a very bad man,
I really wish to be better, and I will
commence by paying back what I owe
your father, but I don't see how I can
do it without a cent."
"I'll attend to that," said
Jack, who had an idea.
So the giant packed up his few things in his gripsack,
shouldered his ax, and went with Jack down the vine, to
the little cottage yard.
"The first thing you do is to cut down that bean
vine," said Jack.
"But I can't go home if I do," said the giant.
"I don't want you to, and you won't want to either,
when you have been here a while," was the boy's reply.
So the giant laid low the great bean vine with his ax.
Of course, Jack's mother was startled, to see so large
a giant coming home with her Jack, but when she saw
that the boy was safe and sound, and that he managed
the giant so easily, her fears vanished, and she bade him
welcome. She had some doubts as to where to put him
to sleep, and how to feed him, but Jack said, "leave
that to me, mother, I came out all right with the cow, and
the beans, and I will with the giant, you'll see! We are
going to the fair now, and
when we come back we
will have all the money
we want." So Jack and
the giant started to walk
to the neighboring town
where a fair was being
When they came to
the place it was evening,
so they slipped into the
fair grounds without being
seen, as all the visitors
had gone home for the
Jack had no trouble
in securing a large tent
for his giant, in which
they both slept soundly
In the morning,
bright and early, when
the crowds began to
flock to the fair, Jack
was standing outside of
the door of the tent,
shouting, COME! COME!
COME! Come one, come
all, come I "and bring the children to see the greatest
wonder o the age, the only living giant now in cap-
tivity, ly ten small pieces of copper to see the
biggest, the grandest man on earth "
e people had never seen a giant outside of
a p ture book, before, so the coppers poured into
Jack's pocket, and the people crowded the
tent all day long, and when evening came
Jack and the giant had a goodly sum to
divide. In fact, while the fair lasted, the
giant did a thriving business, for crowds
went to see him every day.
When the fair was over, off
went manager Jack, with his giant,
to other towns, where fairs were
being held, and repeated their suc-
cessful entertainments. Jack would
: ,. -,i 4 a .. ... .
N6: .~ Z-
would go back -- ^ J
to the old home
and give the
money that was made to his mother. As time
went on, they grew very rich, and this is the
way the giant paid back what he had taken
from Jack's father.
When winter came the giant pitched his tent
near Jack's house, and was a great help to the
widow about the place, as he was so big, strong and
nimble, that he could do the work of sixteen men
in less than a jiffy.
For years Jack and the giant stayed together, as
partners, in the show business, and the giant never ceased
to be glad that he had met Jack, and had given up the
lazy life of a robber.
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