u8 At the Back of the North Wind
"What do you want me to do next, dear North Wind?" said Diamond, wishing to show his love by being obedient.
" What do you want to do yourself?"
" I want to go into the country at your back."
"Then you must go through me."
" I don't know what you mean."
" I mean just what I say. You must walk on as if I were an open door, and go right through me."
" But that will hurt you."
" Not in the least. It will hurt you, though."
" I don't mind that, if you tell me to do it."
" Do it," said North Wind.
Diamond walked towards her instantly. When he reached her knees, he put out his hand to lay it on her, but nothing was there save an intense cold. He walked on. Then all grew white about him; and the cold stung him like fire. He walked on still, groping through the whiteness. It thickened about him. At last, it got into his heart, and he lost all sense. I would say that he fainted—only whereas in common faints all grows black about you, he felt swallowed up in whiteness. It was when he reached North Wind's heart that he fainted and fell. But as he fell, he rolled over the threshold, and it was thus that Diamond got to the back of the north wind.