A fantasy novel by George MacDonald

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and now sat between me and the fourth door. I guessed that her design was to prevent my entering there. I sprang from the couch, and darted past her to the door. I opened it at once and went out. All I remember is a cry of distress from the woman: " Don't go there, my child! Don't go there!" But I was gone.
I knew nothing more; or, if I did, I had forgot it all when I awoke to consciousness, lying on the floor of the cottage, with my head in the lap of the woman, who was weeping over me, and stroking my hair with both hands, talking to me as a mother might talk to a sick and sleeping, or a dead child. As soon as I looked up and saw her, she smiled through her tears; smiled with withered face and young eyes, till her countenance was irradiated with the light of the smile. Then she bathed my head and face and hands in an icy cold, colourless liquid, which smelt a little of damp earth. Imme­diately I was able to sit up. She rose and put some food before me. When I had eaten, she said s
" Listen to me, my child. You must leave me directly 1"
" Leave you!" I said. " I am so happy with you. I never was so happy in my life."
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