"Grey Wolf," said Ivan still weeping, “I am guilty before thee!"

"Well," said the Wolf, “be it so. I will help thee. Sit upon my back and say whither I shall bear thee and wherefore.”

So Tzarevich Ivan wiped away his tears and a third time mounted the Wolfs back.

"Take me, Grey Wolf," he said, “across three times nine lands to the Tzarevria who is called Helen the Beautiful. And straightway the Wolf began running, a hundred times swifter than the swiftest horse, faster than one can tell in a tale, until he came to the country of the beautiful princess. At length he stopped at a golden railing surrounding a lovely garden.

"Get down now, Tzarevich Ivan," said the Wolf, "go back along the road by which we came, and wait for me in the open field under the green oak tree.”

So Tzarevich Ivan did as he was bidden.

But as for the Grey Wolf, he waited there. Toward evening, when the sun was very low and its rays were no longer hot, the Tzar s daughter, Helen the Beautiful, went into the garden to walk with her nurse and the ladies-in-waiting of the Court. When she came near, suddenly the Grey Wolf leaped over the railing into the garden, seized her and ran off with her more swiftly than twenty horses. He ran to the open field, to the green oak- tree where Tzarevich Ivan was waiting, and set her down beside him. Helen the Beautiful had been greatly frightened, but dried her tears quickly when she saw the handsome youth.

"Mount my back, Tzarevich Ivan," said the Wolf, “and take the Tzarevna in your arms.”

Tzarevich Ivan sat on the Grey Wolf s back and took Helen the Beautiful in his arms, and the Wolf began running more swiftly than fifty horses, across the three times nine countries, back to the Tzardom of Tzar Afron. The nurse and ladies-in-waiting of the Tzarevna hastened to the Palace, and the Tzar sent many troops to pursue them, but fast as they went they could not overtake the Grey Wolf.

Sitting on the Wolfs back, with the Tzar's beautiful daughter in his arms, Tzarevich Iran began to love her with his heart and soul, and Helen the Beautiful began also to love him, so that when the Grey Wolf came to the country of Tzar Afron, to whom she was to be given, Tzarevich Ivan began to shed many tears.

"Why dost thou weep, Tzarevich Ivan?" asked the Wolf, and Ivan answered: “Grey Wolf, my friend! Why should I not weep and be desolate? I myself have begun to love Helen the Beautiful, yet now I must give her up to Tzar Afron for the Horse with the Golden Mane. For if I do not, then Tzar Afron will dishonour my name in all countries.”

"I have served thee in much, Tzarevich Ivan," said the Grey Wolf, “but I will also do thee this service. Listen. When we come near to the Palace, I myself will take the shape of the Tzar s daughter, and thou shalt lead me to Tzar Afron and shalt take in exchange the Horse with the Golden Mane. Thou shalt mount him and ride far away. Then I will ask leave of Tzar Afron to walk on the open steppe, and when I am on the steppe with the Court ladies-in-waiting, thou hast only to think of me, the Grey Wolf, and I shall come once more to thee.”

As soon as the Wolf had uttered these words, he beat his paw against the damp ground and instantly he took the shape of the Tzar s beautiful daughter: so like to her that no one in the world could have told that he was not the Tzarevna herself. Then, bidding Helen the Beautiful wait for him outside the walls, Tzarevich Ivan led the Grey Wolf into the Palace to Tzar Afron.

The Tzar, thinking at last he had won the treasure he had so long desired as his wife, was very joyful, and gave Tzarevich Ivan, for Tzar Dolmat, the Horse with the Golden Mane and the golden bridle. And Tzarevich Ivan, mounting, rode out side the walls to the real Helen the Beautiful, put her before him on the saddle and set out across the three times nine countries back to the Tzardom of Tzar Dolmat.

As to the Grey Wolf, he spent one day, he spent two days, he spent three days in Tzar Afron s Palace, all the while having the shape of the beautful Tzarevna, while the Tzar made preparations for a plendid bridal. On the fourth day he asked the Tzar s permission to go for a walk on the open steppe.

"Oh, my beautiful Tzar s daughter," said Tzar Afron, “I grant thee whatever thou mayest wish. Go then and walk where it pleaseth thee, and per chance it will soothe thy grief and sorrow at part ing from thy father.”

So he ordered serving- women and all the ladies-in-waiting of the Court to walk with her.

But all at once, as they walked on the open steppe, Tzarevich Ivan, far away, riding with the real Helen the Beautiful on the Horse with the Golden Mane, suddenly bethought himself and cried: "Grey Wolf, Grey Wolf, I am thinking of thee now. Where art thou?"

At that very instant the false Princess, as she walked with the ladies-in-wait ing of Tzar Afron s Court, turned into the Grey Wolf, which ran off more swiftly than seventy horses. The ladies-in-waiting hastened to the Palace and Tzar Afron sent many soldiers in pursuit, but they could not catch the Grey Wolf and soon he overtook Tzarevich Ivan.

"Mount on my back, Tzarevich Ivan," said the Wolf, “and let Helen the Beautiful ride on the Horse with the Golden Mane.”

Tzarevich Ivan mounted the Grey Wolf, and the Tzarevna rode on the Horse with the Golden Mane, and so they went on together to the Tzardom of

Tzar Dolmat, in whose garden hung the cage with the Glowing Bird. Whether the way was a long one or a short one, at length they came near to Tzar Dolmat s Palace. Then Tzarevich Ivan, getting down from the Wolfs back, said:

"Grey Wolf, my dear friend! Thou hast served me many services. Serve me also one more, the last and greatest. If thou canst take the shape of Helen the Beautiful, thou canst take also that of this Horse with the Golden Mane. Do this and let me deliver thee to Tzar Dolmat in exchange for the Glowing Bird. Then, when I am far away on the road to my own Tzardom, thou canst again rejoin us.”

"So be it," said the Wolf and beat his paw against the dry ground, and immediately he took the shape of the Horse with the Golden Mane, so like to that the Princess rode that no one could have told one from the other. Then Tzarevich Ivan, leaving Helen the Beautiful on the green lawn with the real Horse with the Golden Mane, mounted and rode to the Palace gate. When Tzar Dolmat saw Tzarevich Ivan riding on the false Horse with the Golden Mane he rejoiced exceedingly. He came out, embraced Ivan in the wide courtyard and kissed him on the mouth, and taking his right hand, led him into his splendid rooms. He made a great festival, and they sat at oak tables covered with embroidered cloths and for two days ate, drank and made merry. On the third day the Tzar gave to Tzarevich Ivan the Glowing Bird in its golden cage. Ivan took it, went to the green lawn where he had left Helen the Beautiful, mounted the real Horse with the Golden Mane, set the Tzarevna on the saddle before him, and together they rode away across the three times nine lands towards his native country, the Tzardom of Tzar Wyslaff. As to Tzar Dolmat, for two days he admired the false Horse with the Golden Mane, and on the third day he desired to ride him. He gave orders, there fore, to saddle him, and mounting, rode to the open steppe. But as he was riding, it chanced that Tzarevich Ivan, far away with Helen the Beautiful, all at once remembered his promise and cried: “Grey Wolf, Grey Wolf, I am thinking of thee !" And at that instant the horse Tzar Dolmat rode threw the Tzar from his back and turned into the Grey Wolf, which ran off more swiftly than a hundred horses. Tzar Dolmat hastened to the Palace and sent many soldiers in pursuit, but they could not catch the Grey Wolf, and soon he overtook the Horse with the Golden Mane that bore Tzarevich Ivan and the Tzarevna.

"Get down, Tzarevich Ivan," said the Wolf, "mount my back and let Helen the Beautiful ride on the Horse with the Golden Mane."

So Tzarevich Ivan mounted the Grey Wolf and the Tzarevna rode on the Horse with the Golden Mane, and at length they came to the forest where the Wolf had devoured Tzarevich Ivan s horse. There the Grey Wolf stopped.

“Well, Tzarevich Ivan," he said, “I have paid for thy horse, and have served thee in faith and truth. Get down now, I am no longer thy servant."

Tzarevich Ivan got down from the Wolf s back, weeping many tears that they should part, and the Grey Wolf leaped into a thicket and disappeared, leaving Tzarevich Ivan, mounted on the Horse with the Golden Mane, with Helen the Beautiful in his arms who held in her hands the golden cage in which was the Glowing Bird, to ride to the Palace of Tzar Wyslaff.

They rode on three days, till cliey came to the green plain where the three ways met, and where stood the great stone, and being very tired, the Tzarevich and the Tzarevna here dismounted and lay down to rest. He tied the Horse with the Golden Mane to the stone, and lying lovingly side by side on the soft grass, they went to sleep. Now it happened that the two elder brothers of Ivan, Tzarevich Dimitry and Tzarevich Wassily, having tired of their amusements in the wood and being minded to return to their father without the Glowing Bird, came riding past the spot and found their brother lying asleep with Helen the Beautiful beside him. Seeing not only that he had found the Glowing Bird, but a horse with a mane of gold and a lovely Princess, they were envious, and Tzarevich Dimitry drew his sword, stabbed Tzarevich Ivan to death, and cut his body into small pieces. They then awoke Helen the Beautiful and began to question her.