The princess, who took great pleasure in giving the sultan the satisfaction he demanded, said: "If I appear so little altered, I beg of your majesty to consider that I received new life yesterday morning by the presence of my dear husband and deliverer, Aladdin, whom I looked upon and bewailed as lost to me. My greatest suffering was to find myself forced not only from your majesty, but from my dear husband; not only from the love I bore him, but from the uneasiness I laboured under through fear that he, though innocent, might feel the effects of your anger. As to what relates to my transportation, I was myself the innocent cause of it." To persuade the sultan of the truth of what she said, she gave him a full account of how the African magician had disguised himself, and offered to change new lamps for old ones; how she had amused herself in making that exchange; how the palace and herself were carried away and transported into Africa, with the magician, who was recognised by two of her women and the eunuch who made the exchange of the lamp, when he had the audacity, after the success of his daring enterprise, to propose himself for her husband; how he persecuted her till Aladdin's arrival; how they had concerted measures to get the lamp from him again, and the success they had fortunately met with by her dissimulation in inviting him to supper, and giving him the cup with the powder prepared for him. "For the rest," added she, "I leave it to Aladdin to recount."
Shouldst thou think upon me after the length of my age, and the vicissitudes of days and circumstances,
"My son," answered the sultan, embracing him a second time, "you would wrong me to doubt for a moment of my sincerity: your life from this moment is too dear to me not to preserve it, by presenting you with the remedy which is at my disposal."
Aladdin's mother, seeing the sultan retire, and all the people depart, judged rightly that he would not sit again that day, and resolved to go home. When Aladdin saw her return with the present, he knew not what to think, and in fear lest she should bring him some ill news, had not courage to ask her any questions; but she, who had never set foot into the sultan's palace before, and knew not what was every day practised there, freed him from his embarrassment, and said to him: "Son, I have seen the sultan, and am very well persuaded he has seen me too; for I placed myself just before him; but he was so much taken up with those who attended on all sides of him, that I pitied him, and wondered at his patience. At last I believe he was heartily tired, for he rose up suddenly, and would not hear a great many who were ready prepared to speak to him, but went away, at which I was well pleased, for indeed I began to lose all patience, and was extremely fatigued with staying so long. But there is no harm done; I will go again to-morrow; perhaps the sultan may not be so busy."
THE FIFTH VOYAGE
"We returned to the palace toward the evening, and the giant arrived shortly after. We were forced to submit to seeing another of our comrades roasted, but at last we revenged ourselves on the brutish giant in the following manner. After he had finished his supper he lay down on his back and fell asleep. As soon as we heard him snore, according to his custom, nine of the boldest among us, and myself, took each of us a spit, and putting the points of them into the fire till they were burning hot, we thrust them into his eye all at once and blinded him. The pain made him break out into a frightful yell: he started up, and stretched out his hands, in order to sacrifice some of us to his rage: but we ran to such places as he could not reach; and after having sought for us in vain, he groped for the gate and went out, howling in agony.
"I went every day at a set hour to make my court to the king, and spent the rest of my time in viewing the city, and what was most worthy of notice.
Morgiana obeyed, though with no little reluctance, and had a curiosity to see this man who ate no salt. To this end, when she had finished what she had to do in the kitchen, she helped Abdoollah to carry up the dishes; and looking at Khaujeh Houssain, knew him at first sight, notwithstanding his disguise, to be the captain of the robbers, and examining him very carefully, perceived that he had a dagger under his garment. "I am not in the least amazed," said she to herself, "that this wicked wretch, who is my master's greatest enemy, would eat no salt with him, since he intends to assassinate him; but I will prevent him."
The slave was not long before she returned, and ran into the hall, laughing so heartily that the princess could not forbear herself. "Well, giggler," said the princess, "will you tell me what you laugh at?" "Madam," answered the slave, laughing still, "who can forbear laughing, to see a fool with a basket on his arm, full of fine new lamps, ask to change them for old ones?"
When Aladdin had finished, "I own," answered the princess, "I shall do myself violence in consenting to make the magician such advances; but what cannot one resolve to do against a cruel enemy? I will therefore follow your advice, since both my repose and yours depend upon it." After the princess had agreed to the measures proposed by Aladdin, he took his leave and went and spent the rest of the day in the neighbourhood of the palace till it was night, and he might safely return to the private door.