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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 141 pages of information about St. George and St. Michael Volume I.
of their life, at least pass through the zone of song:  some of them recognise it as the region of truth, and continue to believe in it still when it seems to have vanished from around them; others scoff as it disappears, and curse themselves for dupes.  Through this zone Richard was now passing.  Hence the moon wore to him a sorrowful face, and he felt a vague sympathy in her regard, that of one who was herself in trouble, half the light of her lord’s countenance withdrawn.  For science had not for him interfered with the shows of things by a partial revelation of their realities.  He had not learned that the face of the moon is the face of a corpse-world; that the sadness upon it is the sadness of utter loss; that her light has in it no dissolved smile, is but the reflex from a lifeless mirror; that of all the orbs we know best she can have least to do with lovers’ longings and losses, she alone having no love left in her—­the cold cinder of a quenched world.  Not an out-burnt cinder, though! she needs but to be cast again into the furnace of the sun.

As it was, Richard had gazed at her hardly for a minute when he found the tears running down his face, and starting up, ashamed of the unmanly weakness, hardly knew what he was doing before he found himself in the open air.  From the hall clock came the first stroke of twelve as he closed the door behind him.  It was the hour at which mother Rees had offered him a meeting with Dorothy; but it was assuredly with no expectation of seeing her that he turned his steps towards her dwelling.

CHAPTER VIII.

An adventure.

When he reached the spot at which he usually turned off by a gap in the hedge to Needle his way through the unpathed wood, he yielded to the impulses of memory and habit, and sought the yew-circle, where for some moments he stood by the dumb, disfeatured stone, which seemed to slumber in the moonlight, a monument slowly vanishing from above a vanished grave.  Indeed it might well have been the grave of buried Time, for what fitter monument could he have than a mutilated sun-dial, what better enclosure than such a hedge of yews, and more suitable light than that of the dying moon?  Or was it but that the heart of the youth, receiving these things as into a concave mirror, reprojected them into space, all shadowy with its own ghostliness and gloom?  Close by the dial, like the dark way into regions where time is not, yawned the mouth of the pleached alley.  Beyond that was her window, on which the moon must now be shining.  He entered the alley, and walked softly towards the house.  Suddenly, down the dark tunnel came rushing upon him Dorothy’s mastiff, with a noise as of twenty soft feet, and a growl as if his throat had been full of teeth—­changing to a boisterous welcome when he discovered who the stranger was.  Fearful of disturbing the household, Richard soon quieted the dog, which was in the habit of obeying him almost

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