"If that is the case, Mr. Sheriff," said Ralph, "I must beg of you to release the poor fellow who chased us. I don't wish any informer's fee, nor have I any desire to get him into trouble."
"I am sorry to say I can't accommodate you," Bjornerud replied. "This man is a notorious poacher and trespasser, whom my deputies have long been tracking in vain. Now that I have him I shall keep him. There's no elk safe in Odalen so long as that rascal is at large."
"That may be; but I shall then turn my informer's fee over to him, which will reduce his fine from fifty dollars to twenty-five dollars."
"To encourage him to continue poaching?"
"Well, I confess I have a little more sympathy with poachers, since we came so near being poachers ourselves. It was only an accident that saved us!"
Little Nils had an idea that he wanted to be something great in the world, but he did not quite know how to set about it. He had always been told that, having been born on a Sunday, he was a luck-child, and that good fortune would attend him on that account in whatever he undertook.
He had never, so far, noticed anything peculiar about himself, though, to be sure, his small enterprises did not usually come to grief, his snares were seldom empty, and his tiny stamping-mill, which he and his friend Thorstein had worked at so faithfully, was now making a merry noise over in the brook in the Westmo Glen, so that you could hear it a hundred yards away.
The reason of this, his mother told him, according to the superstition of her people, was that the Nixy and the Hulder and the gnomes favored him because he was a Sunday child. What was more, she assured him, that he would see them some day, and then, if he conducted himself cleverly, so as to win their favor, he would, by their aid, rise high in the world, and make his fortune.