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|The Adventures of Pinocchio||C. Collodi|
|Page 2 of 3||
As the Fox talked thus, Pinocchio noticed that the Cat carried his right paw in a sling.
"What happened to your paw?" he asked.
The Cat tried to answer, but he became so terribly twisted in his speech that the Fox had to help him out.
"My friend is too modest to answer. I'll answer for him. About an hour ago, we met an old wolf on the road. He was half starved and begged for help. Having nothing to give him, what do you think my friend did out of the kindness of his heart? With his teeth, he bit off the paw of his front foot and threw it at that poor beast, so that he might have something to eat."
As he spoke, the Fox wiped off a tear.
Pinocchio, almost in tears himself, whispered in the Cat's ear:
"If all the cats were like you, how lucky the mice would be!"
"And what are you doing here?" the Fox asked the Marionette.
"I am waiting for my father, who will be here at any moment now."
"And your gold pieces?"
"I still have them in my pocket, except one which I spent at the Inn of the Red Lobster."
"To think that those four gold pieces might become two thousand tomorrow. Why don't you listen to me? Why don't you sow them in the Field of Wonders?"
"Today it is impossible. I'll go with you some other time."
"Another day will be too late," said the Fox.
"Because that field has been bought by a very rich man, and today is the last day that it will be open to the public."
"How far is this Field of Wonders?"
"Only two miles away. Will you come with us? We'll be there in half an hour. You can sow the money, and, after a few minutes, you will gather your two thousand coins and return home rich. Are you coming?"
Pinocchio hesitated a moment before answering, for he remembered the good Fairy, old Geppetto, and the advice of the Talking Cricket. Then he ended by doing what all boys do, when they have no heart and little brain. He shrugged his shoulders and said to the Fox and the Cat:
"Let us go! I am with you."
And they went.
They walked and walked for a half a day at least and at last they came to the town called the City of Simple Simons. As soon as they entered the town, Pinocchio noticed that all the streets were filled with hairless dogs, yawning from hunger; with sheared sheep, trembling with cold; with combless chickens, begging for a grain of wheat; with large butterflies, unable to use their wings because they had sold all their lovely colors; with tailless peacocks, ashamed to show themselves; and with bedraggled pheasants, scuttling away hurriedly, grieving for their bright feathers of gold and silver, lost to them forever.
Through this crowd of paupers and beggars, a beautiful coach passed now and again. Within it sat either a Fox, a Hawk, or a Vulture.
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|The Adventures of Pinocchio
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