The Dark Lands


There is a story about how an emperor, who having reached the end of the world with his army, entered the Dark Lands, where you could not see anything.

Not knowing how they would return, they left their mares’ colts behind, so that the mares would guide them back out of the darkness.

They entered the Dark Lands, and as they walked through them the entire time they felt that they were walking on some small stones. Suddenly a voice bellowed out of the darkness:

“Whosoever takes these stones shall regret it, and who does not, shall also regret it!”

Some of the men thought

“If I’m going to regret it, why should I carry them?”

And yet others thought

“Well, I should take at least one.”

When they came back into the World, they realized that all the stones were gems. And then those who did not take any regretted terribly, and those who did – regretted not taking more.

Serbian folk tale