»Good afternoon,” said the Fox.
“Good afternoon,” replied the Little Prince, who stood up but saw nothing.
“Here I am,” said the voice, “under the apple tree.
“Who are you?” said the Little Prince. “You are very cute.”
“I am a fox,” said the fox.
“Play with me,” asked the little prince. “I am so sad.”
“I cannot play with you,” said the little fox. “I am not domesticated.”
“Ah, I am sorry!” said the Little Prince.
Then he thought, and asked, “What is this ‘tame’ creature?”
“You are not from around here,” said the Fox. “What are you doing here?” said the fox.
“I am looking for people,” said the little prince. “What is domesticated?”
“People,” said the Fox, “have guns and hunt. This is very annoying! He also raises chickens. That is their only worry. Do you care about chickens? ” “No,” said the little prince. “I am looking for friends. What is “domesticated”?
“It’s something that hasn’t been used for a long time,” said the fox. “It means making connections.”
“Sure,” said the Fox. “Right now you are just a little boy to me, just like a hundred thousand other little boys. And I do not need you. And you need me even less. To you, I am just a fox among a hundred thousand other foxes. But if you tame me, we will need each other. You will be the only one in the world for me. I will be the only one for you. “
“Yes, I got it,” said the little prince. “Somewhere there is a flower… I believe it has domesticated me…”
“I can,” said the Fox. “Much is happening here on earth.”
“Oh! Not on Earth,” said the little prince.
The Fox’s interest was aroused:
“On what other planet?”
“Are there hunters there?”
“Uh, interesting. What about chickens? “
“Nothing is perfect,” sighed the fox.
And she ate to spread her former thought:
“My life is bleak. I hunt chickens, people chase me. All chickens are the same, and so are the people. I am bored already. But if he domesticated me, the sun would shine into my life. I would learn steps that would be different from others. All steps bring me death. And yours would lure me out of the cave like a song. Look! See the cornfields down there? I do not eat bread. What about grain? The cornfields remind me of nothing. And that is sad! But your hair is as golden as grain. Oh, how I wish I could be tamed! Grain, which is gold, would remind me of you. I’d even be happy with the wind in my corn…” The Fox stopped and stared at the Little Prince for a long time. “Please… tame me,” she said.
“I really like it,” replied the Little Prince, “I have very little time. I have to make friends and meet many other things. “
“Only you know what you tame,” said the Fox. “People do not take the time to learn anything at all. They buy ready-made articles from traders. But since there are no traders who sell friends, people no longer have friends. If you want a friend, take me home! “
“And how do you do that?” said the little prince.
“One must be very patient,” replied the Fox. “One day, you will be sitting in the grass, farther away from me – like this. Now I will look at you from the side, and you cannot answer. Words are the source of misunderstandings. But you will be able to sit closer every day…”
The next morning, the little prince came back.
“You’d better come at the same time every day,” said the Fox. If you come at four in the afternoon, I look forward to seeing you at three. The closer the time gets, the happier I will be. At four I will be impatient and restless; I will feel how precious happiness is. But if you come without knowing when, I
will not know when I shall begin to be happy. Ceremonies are necessary. “
“What is this ceremony?” asked the Little Prince.
“It is also something that is almost useless,” said the fox. “That is what makes a day different from other days, a different time from other days. For example, my hunters have a ceremony. On Thursdays, they dance with the village girls. So Thursday is a wonderful day! Then I take a walk to the vineyard there. But if the hunters were dancing at any time, all days would be the same, and I would have no holidays. “«