"'I am not in mood for riddles,' said the king.
"'What I say is not a riddle, as you shall hear. Ne-ne-hofra grew up under my eyes, and confided every incident of her life to me; among others, that she loved the son of her father's gardener, Barbec by name.'
"Oraetes's frown, strangely enough, began to dissipate.
"'With that love in her heart, O king, she came to you; of that love she is dying.'
"'Where is the gardener's son now?' asked Oraetes.
"The king went out and gave two orders. To one oeris he said, 'Go to Essouan and bring hither a youth named Barbec. You will find him in the garden of the queen's father;' to another, 'Assemble workmen and cattle and tools, and construct for me in Lake Chemmis an island, which, though laden with a temple, a palace, and a garden, and all manner of trees bearing fruit, and all manner of vines, shall nevertheless float about as the winds may blow it. Make the island, and let it be fully furnished by the time the moon begins to wane.'
"'Be of cheer. I know all, and have sent for Barbec.'
"'You shall have him to yourself, and he you to himself; nor shall any disturb your loves for a year.'