THORSTON AND THE DWARF
WHEN spring came, Thorston made ready his ship, and put twenty-four men on board of her. When they came to Vinland, they ran her into a harbour, and every day he went on shore to amuse himself.
He came one day to an open part of the wood, where he saw a great rock, and out a little way from it a Dwarf, who was horridly ugly, and was looking up over his head with his mouth wide open; and it appeared to Thorston that it ran from ear to ear, and that the lower jaw came down to his knees. Thorston asked him, why he was acting so foolishly. "Do not be surprised, my good lad," replied the Dwarf; "do you not see that great dragon that is flying up there? He has taken off my son, and I believe that it is Odin himself that has sent the monster to do it. But I shall burst and die if I lose my son." Then Thorston shot at the dragon, and bit him under one of the wings, so that he fell dead to the earth; but Thorston caught the Dwarf's child in the air, and brought him to his father.
The Dwarf was exceeding glad, and was more rejoiced than any one could tell; and he said, "A great benefit have I to reward you for, who are the deliverer of my son; and now choose your recompense in gold and silver.' "Cure your son;" said Thorston, "but I am not used to take rewards for my services." "It were not becoming," said the Dwarf, "if I did not reward you; and let not my shirt of sheeps' -wool, which I will give you, appear a contemptible gift, for you will never be tired when swimming, or get a wound, if you wear it next your skin."
Thorston took the shirt and put it on, and it fitted him well, though it had appeared too short for the Dwarf. The Dwarf now took a gold ring out of his purse and gave it to Thorston, and bid him to take good care of it, telling him that he never should want for money while be kept that ring. He next took a black stone and gave it to Thorston, and said, "If you hide this stone in the palm of your hand no one will see you. I have not many more things to offer you, or that would be of any value to you; I will, however, give you a fire-stone for your amusement."
He then took the stone out of his purse, and with a steel point. The stone was triangular, white on one side and red on the other, and a yellow border ran round it. The Dwarf then said, "If you prick the stone with the point in the white side, there will come on such a hail-storm that no one will be able to look at it; but if you want to stop this shower, you have only to prick on the yellow part, and there will come so much sunshine that the whole will melt away. But if you should like to prick the red side, then there will come out of it such fire, with sparks and crackling, that no one will be able to look at it, You may also get whatever you will by means of this point and stone, and they will come of themselves back to your band when you call them. I can now give you no more such gifts."
Thorston then thanked the Dwarf for his presents, and returned to his men, and it was better for him to have made this voyage than to have stayed at home.
[Thorston's Saga, c. 3, in the Kampa Däter.]