THE PRINCESS AND CURDIE - online book

A Children's Fantasy Book By George MacDonald - illustrated version.

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CURDIES MISSION.
69
scarcely see the end at which he entered; but the other was only a few yards from him—and there he saw another wonder: on a huge hearth a great fire was burning, and the fire was a huge heap of roses, and yet it was fire. The smell of the roses filled the air, and the heat of the flames of them glowed upon his face. He turned an inquiring look upon the lady, and saw that she was now seated in an ancient chair, the legs of which were crusted with gems, but the upper part like a nest of daisies and moss and green grass.
" Curdie," she said in answer to his eyes, " you have stood more than one trial already, and have stood them well: now I am going to put you to a harder. Do you think you are prepared for it ? "
" How can I tell, ma'am ? " he returned, " seeing I do not know what it is, or what preparation it needs ? Judge me yourself, ma'am."
"It needs only trust and obedience," answered the lady."
" I dare not say anything, ma'am. If you think me fit, command me."
" It will hurt you terribly, Curdie, but that will be all; no real hurt, but much real good will come to you from it."
Curdie made no answer, but stood gazing with parted lips in the lady's face.
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