It was a humble dwelling of plastered stone, standing between two tall fir-trees, with ivy growing over the walls, lilies and hollyhocks blooming in the garden. Pierre found it not half so good a house as "L'Alouette." But to the custodian it was more precious than a palace. In this upper room with its low mullioned window the Maid began her life.
Under the great knotted roots of the fir-trees there was a hole, which was more than half-covered with snow; and it was noticeable that there was not a track of bird or beast to be seen anywhere around it. Lars, who on the way had been buoyed up by the sense of his heroism, began now to feel strangely uncomfortable.
And there was the silent pool at their feet, and the darkening belt of fir-trees beyond, and the pale moon ever brightening in the shadowy heavens. It was a picture such as a painter might have dreamt of. Not a sound only once the faint cry of some wild animal in the far-off woods, and the flutter of a night-moth on the wing. Helen's face was turned eastwards towards the fast-fading evening glow.
Doctor Montano gives a very striking account of one of these daring missionaries, Father Saturnino Urios, of the Society of Jesus, who, in a single year, converted and baptised fifty-two hundred people. There are thirty-one islands of considerable size in the Philippine group. Their area exceeds that of Great Britain. Pine and fir-trees are abundant. Large areas are suitable for wheat.
Snowflake gave her a friendly and grateful look, and then went leaping joyfully after the other goats. Heidi returned to the fir-trees. "O grandfather," she cried, even before she had come up to him, "it was so beautiful. The fire, and the roses on the rocks, and the blue and yellow flowers, and look what I have brought you!"
Leger's quarters until we were sufficiently near to see men moving about excitedly, when he struck off for the rear of the encampment, where could be found such cover as stout bushes and small fir-trees would afford.
I can't help it I shudder when I think of the possibility of being mangled or or blinded. Rilla, I cannot face that thought. To be blind never to see the beauty of the world again moonlight on Four Winds the stars twinkling through the fir-trees mist on the gulf. I ought to go I ought to want to go but I don't I hate the thought of it I'm ashamed ashamed."
Ernescliffe performed the wonderful feat of getting the former over the tall fence, while Norman conducted the donkey a long way round, undertaking to meet them at the other side of the plantation. The talk became desultory, as they proceeded for at least a mile along a cart-track through soft-tufted grass and heath and young fir-trees.
There lived, once upon a time, in the land of Marigliano, a poor woman called Masella, who had six pretty daughters, all as upright as young fir-trees, and an only son called Antonio, who was so simple as to be almost an idiot. Hardly a day passed without his mother saying to him, 'What are you doing, you useless creature?
"That's whar they hev got the upper-hand o' humans." As he gazed again at the thicket, he saw now something that he had been too much agitated to observe before, a column of dense smoke that rose from far down the declivity, and seemed to make haste to hide itself among the low-hanging boughs of a clump of fir-trees. "It's somebody's house down thar," was Rick's conclusion.