Once upon a time, there lived a girl in a northern country, the girl both nimble-legged and beautiful. Yet she was most reluctant to get married. Numerous men were coming to woo her, but she remained adamant. She fled for the woods as soon as she knew that another suitor was nearing to the house. The hearsay about the strange girl whose hand and heart nobody was able to win spread round the outskirts of the country. And so, a young hunter famed for his determination in every pursuit and whom luck had never betrayed conceived an idea to marry the girl. He was quite positive about success and therefore, losing no time, he set out for the village where the stubborn lass lived. Scarcely had he entered the house when the girl rushed out through the backdoor and raced for the woods, laughing sonorously.
The young man made a dash for the runaway girl. She zigzagged between trees, and, knowing the road perfectly, avoided all the wind-fallen ones. The young man was chasing her, yet he wasn’t able to shrink the distance between them.
“Surely she’s a good runner, but I’m every bit as good a hunter.” Thought the fine fellow, and suddenly a bright scheme was at the front of his mind.
He decided to toil the girl to the height of the loftiest mountain in order to catch her there and never let go of her. Hence, the hunter started manoeuvring so that the girl had nowhere to run, except for the mountain. Eventually, she reached the height and there, among clouds, she stopped. The girl didn’t want to surrender, and, hearing the young man climbing up to catch her, she jumped up in the air. The clouds took her in mid-flight and carried her away.
When the young hunter gained the top of the mountain, the girl was nowhere to be seen. He gazed about and then started calling her, but nobody would answer. The solitary young fellow stood on the height surrounded by clouds. He hanged his head in sadness and become lost in thought. Suddenly, he leaped down. He was in free fall for a second, after which somebody caught him up and smoothly lowered to the ground. It appeared to be the same girl. The fluffy cloud in which she hid turned into her wings the moment she had her heart set on saving the proud hunter. Upon thinking that, just like herself, he wouldn’t stand failure, she saw a kindred soul in him.
The young lad brushed himself off and looked at his rescuer.
“I’ve caught you,” said he, with a sly smile.
The romantic recklessness of the suitor was to the girl’s liking and they got married the next day.
(Translate by Pavel Zamachowski)