‘If Jane had a child,’ said he to himself, ‘who knows but that one day it might play about here and fall in and be killed?’
The old woman had not gone far, when great was her alarm at perceiving, advancing at full pace, a headless horse, bearing a black and grim rider, with horns sprouting from under a little jockey-cap.
It was winter and the house was cold and dark. There was no wood, no light, no food; and they were starving.
Anansi's first thought was to run home and give all his family a good meal from his wonderful pot. A selfish, greedy fear prevented him. ‘What if I should use up all the magic of the pot on them, and have nothing more left for myself!’ So, his mind full of this thought, he hid the pot.
Meat had become so scarce that only the rich chiefs had money enough to buy it. The poor people were starving. Anansi and his family were in a miserable state.
‘Ah!’ said the Hare; ‘the king of England has the finest orchard in the whole land, but it does not bear so much as a crab, for there lies a heavy gold chain in three turns round the orchard. If he got that dug up, there would not be a garden like it for bearing in all his kingdom.’
The harvest was quite ten times greater than any they had ever had before. Egya Anansi was very well pleased when he saw his wealth of corn and beans.
One day the king made a proclamation that his three daughters would be given as wives to any man who could find out their names. Anansi made up his mind to do so.
When the rich brother saw all that was on the table, and all that was behind in the larder, he grew quite spiteful and wild, for he couldn’t bear that his brother should have anything.
Anansi took his big sticks and beat so hard that the dwarf fell down dead. The greedy fellow was now thoroughly frightened, for he knew that the dwarf was favourite jester to the King of the country. He wondered how he could fix the blame on some one else.
Leopard and Wolf promised the ants that on their return they would spread a feast for them. Unfortunately, Spider heard the invitation and made up his mind to benefit by it.