None of them spoke, they were just sitting there silently. These twelve people were the twelve months. Great January sat highest of all; his hair and beard were as white as snow, and in his hand he held a huge club.

Marusa was terrified. She stood still for a time in terror, but, cold and hunger drove her to grow bolder, she went up to them and with downcast eyes said: "Please, kind sirs, may I warm my hands at your fire? I am dying of the cold."

Great January nodded, and asked her: "Why have you come here in this weather? What on earth are you looking for?"

"I am looking for violets," answered Marusa .

January laughed heartily. "This is no time to be looking for violets you silly goose, for everything is covered with snow," he answered.

"Yes, I know; but my sister Holena and my stepmother said that I must bring them some violets from the forest. If I don't bring them, I can't go home. Tell me, please tell me where I can find some."

Great January frowned, then he stood up and went to one of the younger months - it was March - and, giving him the club, he said: "Brother, take the high seat."

March took the high seat upon the stone and waved the club over the fire. The fire blazed up, the snow began to melt, the trees began to bud, and the ground under the young beech-trees was at once covered with grass, and crimson daisy buds began to peep through the grass. Suddenly, magically, It was springtime, and under the bushes the violets were blooming among their little leaves. Before Marusa had time to think, so many of them had sprung up that they looked like a blue cloth spread out on the ground in front of her.

"Pick them quickly, Marusa!" commanded March.

Marusa picked them joyfully till she had a big bunch. Then she thanked the months with all her heart and scampered merrily home.

Holena and the stepmother were so shocked when they saw Marusa bringing the violets that they opened the door to her without thinking, and the scent of violets filled the whole cottage.