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Humpbacked Little Pony:Hump, humpbacked, firebird, Fire Bird, Maiden Queen

Once upon a time, in a land far away, Ivan was returning home with three horses that he had just purchased. Two of the horses were magnificent stallions, strong and fast. But the third horse was crippled and hunchbacked. The next day Ivan woke up and went outside to care for his new horses, but when he opened the stable doors he discovered that his two stallions had been stolen. Only the Little Humpbacked Horse remained. Soon however, the little horse began to display amazing magical powers. He could fly and change his appearance. Ivan grew to admire and love his Little Humpbacked Horse greatly. The little horse enjoyed fame all throughout the kingdom as travelers came from miles around to see him. The Little Humpbacked Horse became so famous that even the old Tsar was interested in seeing him. As soon as the Tsar saw what incredible powers that the magic horse had he ordered Ivan to have the horse employed in the Tsar's service. The Tsar became increasingly greedy with his demands on the little horse. The animal was enlisted by the Tsar to catch the elusive Fire Bird, and to fly to the Palace of the Moon. Then the Tsar ordered that the magic horse should find the beautiful Maiden Queen and bring her to the Tsar to become his wife. The Little Humpbacked Horse was of course successful in finding the Maiden Queen, but the beautiful girl was not at all pleased with the advances of the old and greedy Tsar. She was actually more interested in Ivan, who had already fallen in love with her. To win her over, the Maiden Queen demanded that the Tsar would have to perform a special task to turn himself into a desirable young man. He would have to first jump into a cauldron of cold water, then into one of boiling water, and last into one of boiling milk. The Tsar first ordered Ivan to test the system. So Ivan, protected by his faithful horse, plunged into each cauldron and emerged from the third a vibrant and handsome man. Having seen Ivan's success the Tsar quickly undressed and jumped into the cold water. Then he jumped into the second cauldron in which he was promptly boiled alive. Soon after the Tsar's death Ivan and the Maiden Queen were married, and they lived with their Little Humpbacked Horse happily ever after. Composed and translated by