372 At the Back of the North Wind
on him like thinking stars, and the sweetest of grand smiles playing breezily about her beautiful mouth. She was, as so often before, of the height of a rather tall lady. She did not stoop in order to dance with him, but held his hands high in hers. When he saw her, he gave one spring, and his arms were about her neck, and her arms holding him to her bosom. The same moment she swept with him through the open window in at which the moon was shining, made a circuit like a bird about to alight, and settled with him in his nest on the top of the great beech-tree. There she placed him on her lap and began to hush him as if he were her own baby, and Diamond was so entirely happy that he did not care to speak a word. At length, however, he found that he was going to sleep, and that would be to lose so much, that, pleasant as it was, he could not consent.
" Please, dear North Wind," he said, " I am so happy that I'm afraid it's a dream. How am I to know that it's not a dream?"
" What does it matter?" returned North Wind.
" I should cry," said Diamond.
" But why should you cry? The dream, if it is a dream, is a pleasant one—is it not?"
" That's just why I want it to be true."
" Have you forgotten what you said to Nanny about her dream?"
" It's not for the dream itself—I mean, it's not for the pleasure of it," answered Diamond, "for I have that, whether it be a dream or not; it's for you, North Wind: I can't bear to find it a dream, because then I should