A fantasy novel by George MacDonald

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258                            PHANTASTES:
from which you have come. She received us most kindly, and gave us what seems to us the best of advice. She first inquired what experience we had had in arms. We told her we had been well exer­cised from our boyhood, and for some years had kept ourselves in constant practice, with a view to this necessity.
" But you have not actually fought for life and death?' said she.
" We were forced to confess we had not.
"' So much the better in some respects,' she replied. " Now, listen to me. Go first and work with an armourer, for as long time as you find need­ful to obtain a knowledge of his craft; which will not be long, seeing your hearts will be all in the work. Then go to some lonely tower, you two alono. Receive no visits from man or woman. There forge for yourselves every piece of armour that you wish to wear, or to use, in your coming encounter. And keep up your exercises. As, how-ever, two of you can be no match for the three giants, I will find you, if I can, a third brother, who will take on himself the third share of the fight, and the preparation. Indeed, I have already seen one who will, I think, be the very man for your fellow-
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