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Excerpt: ...shoemaker, who came up from behind and joined the two pedestrians. Of course he asked Nono all manner of questions, and got true replies, as to where he was going and why. The hardy shoemaker had a leather apron over his heart, but the heart in his broad breast was honest and kind. Nono and Blackie were taken into his poor cottage, and were free to sleep in its one room, where he and his wife and two children, and the leather and the shoes to be mended, and much more of a nondescript nature, were huddled together. In the morning Nono was assured that one day's more walk would bring him near to Stockholm. That was a trifle, the shoemaker said. He had walked as far as that to church every Sunday, when he was young, and lived up in the north, where the snow was not to be sneezed at, and the night lasted almost all day, as he inconsistently expressed it. As to visiting the princess, the shoemaker assured Nono that was sheer madness. A boy like him would hardly dare to look any of the royal family in the face, he was certain. He had never heard anything particular about the princess, to be sure, but high folks didn't like to be bothered. He advised Nono to show Blackie in the streets. That might bring him a bit of money; and if worst came to worst there was begging, not a bad business in Stockholm he had heard. Money was to be made that way, no doubt, by such a chap as Nono, who had such a pretty story to tell. The shoemaker meant no harm, after his way of looking at life; but Nono drew himself up straight, and said he believed he should see the princess, he knew about her, and she was almost an angel. He might have added, if he had spoken his thoughts, that he felt acquainted with her after a fashion, and that, further, he hoped he should never come to begging while he was able and willing to work. Nono could pay for food and lodging for himself and Blackie without drawing on Jan's coppers, and he set off full of courage. The shoemaker and his wife had...
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