The two sons went into the forest.
Just as they prepared to chop down a tree, a hideous troll called out, “Chop my wood and I’ll kill you.”
Terrified, the sons ran home. “The troll will kill us if we chop his wood,” they told their father.
Now the father was distraught. “Who will help me pay our debts? We’re doomed!” he lamented.
But Ash lad said, “I’ll chop the wood.”
The others laughed, but Ash lad did not care. He had read about trolls, and so he packed a big round cheese in his knapsack, and then tucked it inside his shirt. Then he walked into the woods.
Just as Ash lad raised his axe, a voice thundered, “Chop my wood and I’ll kill you!”
Ash lad did not run. He turned, reached into his bag, and pulled out the big round cheese.
“What’s that?” asked the troll.
Ash lad smiled. “A big rock,” he said, and then he squeezed the cheese until water dripped out of it.
The troll was stunned. “You squeezed water out of that rock!” he exclaimed.
“I did,” Ash lad said, “and I’ll do the same to you unless you help me chop this wood and carry it home.”
“Very well,” said the troll.
The two worked until it was almost sunset.
The troll did not want to lose his wood, so he said, “Let’s go to my place and eat before we take this wood to your home.”
“Good idea,” Ash lad said.