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Good Stories for Great Holidays by  Frances Jenkins Olcott

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THE THREE LITTLE BUTTERFLY BROTHERS

(FROM THE GERMAN)

THERE were once three little butterfly brothers, one white, one red, and one yellow. They played [91] in the sunshine, and danced among the flowers in the garden, and they never grew tired because they were so happy.

One day there came a heavy rain, and it wet their wings. They flew away home, but when they got there they found the door locked and the key gone. So they had to stay out of doors in the rain, and they grew wetter and wetter.

By and by they flew to the red and yellow striped tulip, and said: "Friend Tulip, will you open your flower-cup and let us in till the storm is over?"

The tulip answered: "The red and yellow butterflies may enter, because they are like me, but the white one may not come in."

But the red and yellow butterflies said: "If our white brother may not find shelter in your flower-cup, why, then, we'll stay outside in the rain with him."

It rained harder and harder, and the poor little butterflies grew wetter and wetter, so they flew to the white lily and said: "Good Lily, will you open your bud a little so we may creep in out of the rain?"

The lily answered: "The white butterfly may come in, because he is like me, but the red and yellow ones must stay outside in the storm."

Then the little white butterfly said: "If you won't receive my red and yellow brothers, why, [92] then, I'll stay out in the rain with them. We would rather be wet than be parted."

So the three little butterflies flew away.

But the sun, who was behind a cloud, heard it all, and he knew what good little brothers the butterflies were, and how they had held together in spite of the wet. So he pushed his face through the clouds, and chased away the rain, and shone brightly on the garden.

He dried the wings of the three little butterflies, and warmed their bodies. They ceased to sorrow, and danced among the flowers till evening, then they flew away home, and found the door wide open.


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