THE MONK, THE NAMELESS BOY AND THE KING
Once upon a time there was a man and his wife, whom god hadn’t given a baby.
One night when the man was coming from the field, he met with a monk, who asked him if he could stay at his house because the next morning he would make his way to a country that was far away.
They ate dinner, then the monk asked the host if he had any child. The man answered:
I am fifty years old and my wife is forty, but the great god hasn’t given us any child, even though we’re not bad people. Then the monk told his fortune, saying that god would give them a son but they should leave him without a name till the day the monk would come back.
The monk left and things happened just as he said, they gave birth to a baby boy and left him nameless. The boy grew up and till he was fifteen or sixteen years old, his friends mocked him saying: ‘‘Hey, you nameless boy, hey, you nobody.’’
But the nameless boy got very mad and begged his father to give him a name, but he didn’t because he remembered always the monk’s words and he was afraid he was going to lose his son if he named him.
Then the boy went into the woods near a rock, and inside the rock there was a cave, and inside the cave there was an old blind man living in.
The old man had a flock of sheep and had no child. The boy wanted to stay over there that night and the man invited him to stay, and as he had no child he wanted to make him his son. The next morning the boy wanted to take the sheep to the pasture and the old man let him, but he said:
Son, the place you are going to, has a part full of oranges surrounded with a wall. Please, don’t take the sheep there, otherwise you’ll get blind like I did.
The boy went there, sat nearby the wall and began to pipe. The jinnees showed up and began to dance. When the boy turned back to the cave in the evening, the old man began to fondle a black goat. And he found out that the boy had gone to the place he said not to, so he bespoked the boy again. But the boy went there the next day too. One day, the jinnees’ king appeared and told him: - What do you want me to give you, so that you stop piping because my soldiers are getting tired?
The boy told him he wanted some medicine to heal his father’s eyes, and after the jinnees’ king found out who had done that to his father, he gave the medicine to the boy. The old man’s eyes were healed, he took the boy and showed him the seven rooms inside the cave, but outside the seventh room he told him: - This is your room but it’s not the right time to show it to you.
…but the boy couldn’t stop thinking about the room and went again to the oranges’ place and began to pipe, the jinnees came out and began to dance. Then they begged him to stop it but he said he would stop only when they told him what was inside the seventh room of the cave.
They told him the old man kept its key in his beard and he could take it when he fell asleep. So when the old man fell asleep, the boy took the key out from his beard and the next morning he didn’t take the sheep to the pasture and pretended to be sick. So the old man took the flock to the pasture, while the boy went to the seventh room.
When he opened the door, a horse came out in front of him, and when he saw the boy, they became friends very soon and left from the cave.
When the boy took off with the horse, the black goat the old man used to fondle, saw them and told him:
The horse took your son away!
The old man got on the goat and chased the boy, and after a long road, the boy passed the river and went to another land where the old man couldn’t go. But the old asked the boy to stop because he wanted to tell him his last words and he said:
Even the horse was yours, but you were so impatient and took him away, and I have given him away heartily. But I want you to listen my last advice: ‘‘on your way, you’ll find a dead horse; take his skin and cover your head with that in the place you’re going to stay tonight, otherwise the king of that land will kill you.’’
The boy heard his advice and that’s what he did next. When went to spend the night in an inn, the host didn’t let him inside because he was afraid he would pass the scab to the other clients. But the boy gave him some golden coins and the host took him to a good room, both the boy and the horse.
When he woke up the next morning, he wanted to bathe, but only the king’s court had water, so he went there, bathed and at the moment he left, someone knocked on the window. That day one of the country elders took three melons to the king. One of them was so ripe that it was divided in half, the second one too much ripe but it was a little riven, and the last one was as ripe as it should be.
The king told him he didn’t understand what his intention was, so he called his counselors and they told him it was about his three daughters.
The melon divided in half was his oldest daughter which was too late to get married, the second melon was the middle daughter which was a little late about getting married, and the third melon was the youngest daughter which has just reached the age that she should get married.
So the king gave orders that the folks must gather in front of the palace and his daughters could find the man they wanted to marry.
The oldest daughter chose to marry a rich man’s son, the second daughter chose to marry the son of the chancellor, but the youngest didn’t find the man she wanted to marry.
When she saw the nameless boy, she threw the apple to him, but the king didn’t want a groom who was sick with the scab so he told his daughter to throw the apple again. She threw the apple three other times, but it fell to the nameless boy again and again. So the king had to accept that he would be his groom, but he decided to never meet with his youngest daughter that chose to marry such an ignoble husband.
The king had too many enemies, and when he went to war, he called his two other grooms, while he didn’t even talk to the third one.
But the boy always took the dead horse’s skin off his head and went with his horse to help the king.
One day he lost his hand in war and the king cured his hand by himself and gave him a wrap and three apples. The boy didn’t eat the apples, but he wrapped them and kept them in his chest.
In another war, the king was blinded and only the sand-martin’s milk could heal him, and they could find it only at a very high and dangerous mountain. When the boy heard about this, he took off with his horse and found the milk, then when he got back, on his way, he met with the two other grooms, but they didn’t recognize him because he hadn’t put the horse’s skin on. They asked what he had taken with him, and he said he had found the milk. They offered him too much gold for the milk and he sold it. When they got back, they began to mock him because he had put on the horse’s skin. They went in the palace and put some milk in the king’s eyes, but his burnt terribly, because it was the mare’s ‘milk’.
Then the youngest daughter asked to meet with her father, but he didn’t allow her, then the queen begged him and hit let their daughter enter the palace. She put the sand-martin’s milk on his eyes and they healed at once. Then he asked his daughter where she had found it, but she didn’t tell anything, left the three apples in his hand and ran away. Then the king remembered that he had given the apple to the third groom and he had saved him. Then king asked him to go to the palace and honored him with a great feast that no one had ever seen. When they sat down, the king opened the wrap he had given to the boy and in the middle of it, it was written ‘Gjon’, and it was the boy’s name. Few years passed and the king aged, so he let his third groom reign the kingdom, which made the two other grooms his servants.