Now its quite useless, said the Fingers; but they were obliged to hold her fast, all the same; for the cook dropped some sealing-wax upon the needle, and pinned her handkerchief together with it in front.
May I be permitted to ask if you are of gold? she inquired of the pin, her neighbor. You have a very pretty appearance, and a peculiar head, but it is only little. You must take pains to grow, for its not every one that has sealing-wax dropped upon him.
Only look how they sail! said the Darning-needle. They dont know what is under them! Im here, I remain firmly here. See, there goes a chip thinking of nothing in the world but of himselfof a chip! Theres a straw going by now. How he turns! how he twirls about! Dont think only of yourself, you might easily run up against a stone. There swims a bit of newspaper. Whats written upon it has long been forgotten, and yet it gives itself airs. I sit quietly and patiently here. I know who I am, and I shall remain what I am.
One day something lay close beside her that glittered splendidly; then the Darning-needle believed that it was a diamond; but it was a bit of broken bottle; and because it shone, the Darning-needle spoke to it, introducing herself as a breast-pin.
I have been in a ladys box, said the Darning-needle, and this lady was a cook. She had five fingers on each hand, and I never saw anything so conceited as those five fingers. And yet they were only there that they might take me out of the box and put me back into it.
No, indeed, replied the Darning-needle; but very haughty. There were five brothers, all of the finger family. They kept very proudly together, though they were of different lengths: the outermost, the thumbling, was short and fat; he walked out in front of the ranks, and only had one joint in his back, and could only make a single bow; but he said that if he were hacked off a man, that man was useless for service in war. Daintymount, the second finger, thrust himself into sweet and sour, pointed to sun and moon, and gave the impression when they wrote. Longman, the third, looked at all the others over his shoulder. Goldborder, the fourth, went about with a golden belt round his waist; and little Playman did nothing at all, and was proud of it. There was nothing but bragging among them, and therefore I went away.
So he is disposed of, observed the Darning-needle. I remain here, I am too fine. But thats my pride, and my pride is honorable. And proudly she sat there, and had many great thoughts. I could almost believe I had been born of a sunbeam, Im so fine! It really appears as if the sunbeams were always seeking for me under the water. Ah! Im so fine that my mother cannot find me. If I had my old eye, which broke off, I think I should cry; but, no, I should not do that; its not genteel to cry.
White walls, and black myself! that looks well, remarked the Darning-needle. Now one can see me. I only hope I shall not be seasick! But she was not seasick at all. It is good against seasickness, if one has a steel stomach, and does not forget that one is a little more than an ordinary person! Now my seasickness is over. The finer one is, the more one can bear.