undergrowth were less dense and there was a steep ascent. Up it we ran and when we reached the top my mother paused to listen, while I stood, breathless, by her side.
Save that the leaves above us were stirring with a curious motion, there was not a sound in the whole wood. Birds and animals, even insects, seemed to have crept away to their holes before the coming storm. We could see nothing, for a thick mantle of darkness--a darkness which could almost be felt--had fallen upon the earth. We stood crouched together, trembling and fearful.
"Thank Heaven for the darkness!" my mother murmured to herself. "Philip," she went on, stooping down and feeling for my hand, "do you know where we are? We should be close to the slate-pits."
I was on the point of answering her, but the words died away on my parted lips. Such a sight as was revealed to us at that moment might have driven a strong man mad.
Although half a lifetime has passed away, I can see it now as at that moment. But describe i
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