One day two workers went to watch their mowing grass. It was a holiday, the weather was good, hot. These people worked at the plant, mined malachite and other stones. The work was hard and harmful. One guy was very young, unmarried. But the work has already affected his health, “in the eyes of the green began to cast.” The other was older. He was sick, exhausted, coughed heavily.
The forest was very good, the birds sang. The men were a little tired and lay down on the grass to rest. Somehow they quietly fell asleep. The young man suddenly woke up and saw that the girl was sitting on the rocks. He noticed that her braid seemed to stick to her back. On the spit there were amazing ribbons, either red or green. They were shining, ringing and poured. The girl was short, smooth, fast. The guy realized that this was the Mistress of the Copper Mountain herself. After all, she was wearing silk malachite clothing. It is such a stone that looks like silk.
The guy was very frightened and began to think about how to carry his feet, until the mistress did not notice him. He heard for a long time that she likes to joke about people. The guy had not time to think about it, as the Mistress turned around. She said she wants to talk to him. I called a guy by his name – Stepan Petrovich.
The guy got scared, but did not show it. He said that he had no time to talk, he was in a hurry to watch the grass. The girl laughed at him. Then she said that she had something
The girl laughed and laughed at Stepan, and then she told him not to be afraid; promised that she would not do him any harm. The guy was hurt that they are laughing at him. And he said that he was not afraid of anyone. The Mistress liked this. And she said: “I just need this one, who does not fear anyone.” Tomorrow, as if to go downhill, there will be your factory clerk here, tell him and yes, look, do not forget the words: “The hostess is supposedly the Copper the mountains ordered you, a stifling goat, that you should be removed from the Krasnogorsk mine. If you continue to break my iron hat, I’ll send all the copper in Gumeshki there, that I can not get it there. “The landlady told Stepan not to say anything to his comrade, because this is an elderly, tired and sick man.
After that the Mistress herself became a lizard. At parting she said that if Stepan did as she ordered, she would marry him. And she ran away.
Comrade Stepan woke up, they went to see the grass, then returned home. Stepan was still thinking about what to do. After all, saying such things to the clerk was dangerous. But it was not impossible to say. After all, the Mistress of Copper Mountain could have offended him. And he decided to do as she told him. The next day, when the clerk approached, Stepan told him all the words that the Mistress of the Copper Mountain had given him.
The clerk was angry, ordered to flog Stepan, to descend it uphill and to chained in the face. At the same time, it was ordered that Stepan obtain a lot of precious ore. Otherwise, he had to be brutally beaten.
All that the clerk said was fulfilled. He was chained in the worst case, where it was wet and there was no good ore. After all, it was a time when people were serfs, so they bullied them as they wanted. Stepan was ordered to obtain a huge amount of malachite. As soon as the guard left, Stepan began to work. And the malachite was pouring down as if someone were deliberately spreading it. Water disappeared from the face. Stepan realized that the Mistress was helping him. And then she appeared. She praised the guy for not being frightened of the steward, did everything he was told. And the mistress of the Copper Mountain, Stepan, invited her to look at her dowry. Lizards appeared, removed the chain from Stepan. The landlady ordered them to break the best malachite.
They were with Stepan in large rooms. It was very beautiful, there were amazing flowers and objects around. In one of the rooms the Mistress offered to sit down and asked if Stepan agreed to marry her. The guy did not know what to say to him. He had a fiancee, Nastya. Of course, the girl was not as beautiful as the Mistress of Copper Mountain, because she was an ordinary girl, not a sorceress. And Stepan answered that he can not marry, because he promised another. He thought that the Mistress would be angry with him. But she was delighted and said: “Well done, Stepanushka: I praised you for the clerk, and for that I praise you twice.” You did not covet your wealth, you did not exchange your Nastenka for the stone girl. ” The hostess gave him a large casket, where there were jewelry, and said that it was a gift for Nastya. The sorceress promised, that will help Stepan get rid of the clerk and he will live richly with his wife. But at parting she told the guy not to remember her. This was her third condition.
The mistress ordered the lizards to cover the table and treated Stepan with delicious dishes. Then she began to cry, her tears on her hand froze with green stones. She held out the stones
Stepan and said that they are very expensive. Stepan was sad to part with the Mistress. But there was nothing to do.
Then the guy returned to the slaughter, where he was before. The casket became small, he hid it in his bosom. The lizard attached the chain to his leg. When the warder came, he saw that Stepan had the best malachite. He was very surprised, then said that it was a good slaughter. After that, Stepan was transferred to another place. And the nephew of the warder began to work in this slaughter. But in the other face of Stepan came malachite, as well as other precious ores. The nephew of the overseer did not succeed.
The warden told the clerk that Stepan had sold the unclean spirit to the soul. The clerk decided that it was necessary to benefit from this. And he promised Stepan that they would let him go if he finds a huge malachite block.
At the same time the clerk decided to stop working at Krasnogorka, as ordered by the Mistress. He thought: “Who knows, maybe this fool of the mind then said, and the ore went there with copper, only cast iron.”
Stepan found a malachite block, but they did not let him go. A gentleman came from St. Petersburg and promised Stepan to let him go free if he finds huge malachite stones so that they can make large poles.
Stepan replied that he had already been deceived once. And now he agrees to try, only if first they give him free. The master was angry. But Stepan added: “I almost forgot my bride, too, write a free, but what kind of order – I will be free, and the wife in the fortress.” Barin realized that otherwise nothing would come of Stepan. He wrote free.
Stepan found the stones. There was nothing surprising in this, because he was helped by the Mistress of the Copper Mountain herself. Of the stones made poles, they brought them to the largest church in St. Petersburg.
Stepan became free. And where he worked, that is, in Gumeshki, all the precious stones and ores were lost. People began to say that this Mistress was angry that the malachite pillars were placed in the church.
Stepan did not become happy. He married, built a house, got children. But he was always unhappy, and his health worsened, he seemed to melt in his eyes.
Already being sick he began to go hunting. And he always came to the Krasnogorsk mine. The most surprising is that never Stepan brought booty home. One autumn he went hunting and disappeared. They began to look for him. And found the dead, he lay as if smiling. A large green lizard was seen next to him. She sat and cried. When people ran up, the lizard ran away.
In the hand of the deceased were found green stones. These were rare emeralds, very expensive. Everyone was amazed, even his wife, because he did not tell anyone about these stones. But when the stones began to get out of his hand, they crumbled into dust. Only then did someone know that it was the tears of the Mistress of Copper Mountain. He kept them all his life.
Apparently, Stepan could not forget the Mistress, as she told him, remembered her all her life. It turned out that the meeting with the sorceress did not bring anything good to Stepan. “Here it is, therefore, what a Copper Mountain Mistress! It’s not good for her to meet with her – grief, and good – little joy.”
The reality of the work is how truthfully shown the fate of mountain workers in the era of serfdom. Fantasy is the image of the Mistress of the Copper Mountain, a powerful and fair sorceress. The protagonist, a worker named Stepan, is shown by a person to be honest, hardworking, conscientious and talented. Such qualities among the people have always been admired and respected. Stepan aspires to perfect skill, worked tirelessly. And this he deserved the approval of the Mistress of Copper Mountain.