A fantasy novel by George MacDonald

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18                             PHANTASTES:
small to allow anything to be seen from where I was sitting, I rose and looked over her shoulder. I had just time to see, across the open space, on the edge of the denser forest, a single large ash-tree, whose foliage showed bluish, amidst the truer green of the other trees around it; when she pushed me back with an expression of impatience and terror, and then almost shut out the light from the window by setting up a large old book in it.
" In general," said she, recovering her composure, " there is no danger in the daytime, for then he is sound asleep; but there is something unusual going on in the woods; there must be some solemnity among the fairies to-night, for all the trees are rest­less, and although they cannot come awake, they see and hear in their sleep."
cf But what danger is to be dreaded from him ? "
Instead of answering the question, she went again to the window and looked out, saying she feared the fairies would be interrupted by foul weather, for a storm was brewing in the west
"And the sooner it grows dark, the sooner the Ash will be awake," added she.
I asked her how she knew that there was any unusual excitement in the woods. She replied:
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