LILITH A Fantasy Novel By George MacDonald - online book

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away to the horizon. Through it, along the edge of the forest, flowed a small river, and to this the track led. At sight of the water a new though undefined hope sprang up in me. The stream looked everywhere deep, and was full to the brim, but nowhere more than a few yards wide. A bluish mist rose from it, vanishing as it rose. On the opposite side, in the plentiful grass, many small animals were feeding. Apparently they slept in the forest, and in the morning sought the plain, swimming the river to reach it. I knelt and would have drunk, but the water was hot, and had a strange metallic taste.
I leapt to my feet: here was the warmth I sought—the first necessity of life ! I sped back to my helpless charge.
Without well considering my solitude, no one will understand what seemed to lie for me in the redemption of this woman from death. 'Prove what she may,' I thought with myself, ' I shall at least be lonely no more ! ' I had found myself such poor company that now first I seemed to know what hope was. This blessed water would expel the cold death, and drown my desolation!
I bore her to the stream. Tall as she was, I found her marvellously light, her bones were so delicate, and so little covered them. I grew yet more hopeful when I found her so far from stiff that I could carry her on one arm, like a sleeping child, leaning against my shoulder. I went softly, dreading even the wind of my motion, and glad there was no other.
The water was too hot to lay her at once in it: the shock might scare from her the yet fluttering life ! I laid her on the bank, and dipping one of my garments, began to bathe the pitiful form. So wasted was it
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