Arnol began to climb up into one of the trees. He called down to the others, “Come on! They are friendly creatures. Let’s stop here for a while!”

“Friendly?” Elma replied. “They’re a bunch of little savages! Spouting nonsense and laughing all the time. I won’t go near those stupid creatures. Let us leave.”

But the tree-elves jumped up and down, chanting, “Stay! Stay! You are funny! You make tree-elves laugh! Come with us, we will bake cookies!”

“What are cookies?” Arnol asked in wonder.

The tree-elves thought that was the most hilarious joke. “What are cookies!” they repeated. “Come with us, we’ll show you! We’ll show you!”

So Arnol and some of his companions followed the elves up into the trees, and the rest remained below on the ground. The elves had built crude wooden houses resting high up on the tree branches, interconnected by a network of platforms and bridges. They sang more songs filled with nonsense, then insisted that Arnol sing a song.


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