Rinkitink In Oz
The Three Pearls
When King Rinkitink and Prince Inga had bathed themselves in the sea and eaten a
simple breakfast, they began wondering what they could do to improve their condition.
"The poor people of Gilgad," said Rinkitink cheerfully, "are little likely ever again to
behold their King in the flesh, for my boat and my rowers are gone with everything else.
Let us face the fact that we are imprisoned for life upon this island, and that our lives will
be short unless we can secure more to eat than is in this small sack."
"I'll not starve, for I can eat grass," remarked the goat in a pleasant tone -- or a tone as
pleasant as Bilbil could assume.
"True, quite true," said the King. Then he seemed thoughtful for a moment and turning to
Inga he asked: "Do you think, Prince, that if the worst comes, we could eat Bilbil?"
The goat gave a groan and cast a reproachful look at his master as he said:
"Monster! Would you, indeed, eat your old friend and servant?"
"Not if I can help it, Bilbil," answered the King pleasantly. "You would make a
remarkably tough morsel, and my teeth are not as good as they once were.
While this talk was in progress Inga suddenly remembered the three pearls which his
father had hidden under the tiled floor of the banquet hall. Without doubt King Kitticut
had been so suddenly surprised by the invaders that he had found no opportunity to get
the pearls, for otherwise the fierce warriors would have been defeated and driven out of
Pingaree. So they must still be in their hiding place, and Inga believed they would prove
of great assistance to him and his comrades in this hour of need. But the palace was a
mass of ruins; perhaps he would be unable now to find the place where the pearls were
He said nothing of this to Rinkitink, remembering that his father had charged him to
preserve the secret of the pearls and of their magic powers. Nevertheless, the thought of
securing the wonderful treasures of his ancestors gave the boy new hope.
He stood up and said to the King:
"Let us return to the other end of Pingaree. It is more pleasant than here in spite of the
desolation of my father's palace. And there, if anywhere, we shall discover a way out of
This suggestion met with Rinkitink's approval and the little party at once started upon the
return journey. As there was no occasion to delay upon the way, they reached the big end
of the island about the middle of the day and at once began searching the ruins of the
They found, to their satisfaction, that one room at the bottom of a tower was still
habitable, although the roof was broken in and the place was somewhat littered with