13 .,- ..... -..
The Baldwin Library
m l3 of
"The Toad Woman stopped fanning and looked at her."
Frontispiece.] Page 125.
EVA'S ADVENTURES IN SHADOW-LAND.
BY MARY D. NAUMAN.
THE MERMAN AND THE FIGURE-HEAD.
BY CLARA F. GUERNSEY.
TWO VOLUMES IN ONE.
WITH ILLUSTRA TIONS.
J. B. LIPPINCOTT & CO.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1873, by
J. B. LIPPINCQTT & CO.,
In the office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington.
MY F I E.NW.D
WHAT EVA SAW IN THE POND................................. 9
EVA'S FIRST ADVENTURE................................ ...... 5
THE GIFT OF THE FOUNTAIN.................................... 23
THE FIRST MOONRISE............................................. 30
WHAT ASTER WAS................................................. 36
THE BEGINNING OF THE SEARCH............................... 45
ASTER'S MISFORTUNES ........................... ............. 52
WHAT ASTER DID.............................................,...... 63
THE DOOR IN THE WALL.............................. ...... 73
THE VALLEY OF REST............................................ 80
THE MAGIC BOAT ................................. ......... 92
DOWN THE BROOK......................... ...................... 104
THE ENCHANTED RIVER........................................ 1I19
THE GREEN FROG .................................................. 130
IN THE GROTTO................................................ 145
ASTER'S STORY........................................................ 15
THE LAST OF SHADOW-LAND.................................. 62
WHAT EVA $A W IN THE POND.
HE had been reading fairy-tales, after her
lessons were done, all the morning; and
now that dinner was over, her father gone
to his office, the baby asleep, and her mother sit-
ting quietly sewing in the cool parlor, Eva thought
that she would go down across the field to the old
mill-pond; and sit in the grass, and make a fairy-
tale for herself.
There was nothing that Eva liked better than to
go and sit in the tall grass; grass so tall that when
the child, in her white dress, looped on her plump
white shoulders with blue ribbons, her bright
golden curls brushed back from her fair brow, and
Io Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
her blue eyes sparkling, sat down in it, you could
not see her until you were near her, and then it
was just as if you had found a picture of a little
girl in a frame, or rather a nest of soft, green grass.
All through this tall, wavy grass, down to the
very edge of the pond, grew many flowers,-
violets,.and buttercups, and dandelions, like little
golden suns. 'And as Eva sat there in the grass,
she filled her lap with the purple and yellow
flowers; and all around her the bees buzzed as
though they wished to light upon the flowers in
her lap; on which, at last,-so quietly did she sit,
-two black-and-golden butterflies alighted; while
a great brown beetle, with long black feelers,
climbed up a tall grass-stalk in front of her, which,
Spending slightly under his weight, swung to and
fro in the gentle breeze which barely stirred Eva's
golden curls; and the field-crickets chirped, and
even a snail put his horns out of his shell to look
at the little girl, sitting so quietly in the grass
among the flowers, for Eva was gentle, and neither
bee, nor butterfly, beetle, cricket, or snail were
afraid of her. And this is what Eva called mak-
ing a fairy-tale for herself.
What Eva saw in the Pond. II
But sitting so quietly and watching the'insects,
and hearing their low hum around her, at last
made Eva feel drowsy; and she would have gone
to sleep, as she often did, if all of a sudden there
had not sounded, just at her feet, so that it startled
her, a loud
Croak croak I
But it frightened the two butterflies; for away
they went, floating off on their black-and-golden
wings; and the brown beetle was in so much of a
hurry to run away that he tumbled off the grass-
stalk on which he had been swinging, and as soon
as he could regain his legs, crept, as fast as they
could carry him, under a friendly mullein-leaf
which grew near, and hid himself; and the crickets
were silent; and the bees all flew away to their
hive; and the snail drew himself and his horns
into his house, so that he looked like nothing in
the world but a shell; for when beetles, and but-
terflies, and crickets, and bees, and snails hear
this croak! croak! they know that it is time
for them to get out of the way.
And when Eva looked down, there, just at her
feet, sat a great green toad.
12 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
She gave him a little push with her foot to make
him go away; but instead of that he only hopped
the nearer, and again came-
He was entirely too near now for comfort, so
the little girl jumped up, dropping all the flowers
she had gathered; and as she stood still for a mo-
ment she thought that she heard the green toad
Go to the pond Go to the pond !"
It seemed so funny to Eva to hear a toad talk
that she stood as still as a mouse looking at him;
and as she looked at him, she heard him say again,
as plain as possible:
"Go to the pond Go to the pond !"
And then Eva did just exactly what either you
or I would have done if we had heard a great
green toad talking to us. She went slowly through
the tall grass down to the very edge of the pond.
But instead of the fishes which used to swim
about in the pretty clear water, and which would
come to eat the crumbs of bread she always threw
to them, and the funny, croaking frogs which used
to jump and splash in the water, she saw nothing
What Eva saw in the Pond. 13
but the same great green toad, which had hopped
down faster than she had walked, and which was
now sitting on a mossy stone near the bank. And
when Eva -would have turned away he, croaked
"Stay by the pond Stay by the pond !"
And whether Eva wished it or not, she stood by
the pond-for she really could not help it-and
looked. And it seemed to her that the sky grew
dark and the water black, as it always does before
a rain; and then the child grew frightened, and
would have run away, but that just then, in the
very blackest part of the pond, she saw shining
and looking up at her a little round full moon,
with a face in it; and it seemed to her, strange
though you may think it, that the eyes of the face
in the moon winked at her; and then it was gone.
And again Eva would have left the pond, but
the green toad, which she thought had suddenly
grown larger, croaked more loudly:
Stay by the pond Stay by the pond !"
And Eva obeyed, as indeed she could not help
doing; and then again, in the pond, there came
and went the little moon-face, only that this time
it was larger, and the eyes winked longer.
14 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
For the third time the child would have turned
away, frightened at all these strange doings in the
pond; but for the third time the green toad, larger
than ever, croaked:
"Stay by the pond Stay by the pond !"
So, for the third time, Eva looked at the pond;
and there, for the third time, was the shining
moon-face, as large now as a real full moon, though,
when Eva looked up, there was no moon shining
in the sky to be reflected in the pond; and then
the eyes in the moon-face looked harder at her,
and the toad winked at her; and then the toad
was the moon and the moon was the toad, and
both seemed to change places with each other; and
at last both of them shone and winked so that Eva
could not tell them apart; and before she knew
what she was doing she lay down quietly in the
tall grass, and the moon in the pond and the green
toad winked at her until she fell asleep.
Then the moon-eyes closed and the shining
face faded; and the green toad slipped quietly off
his stone into the water; and still Eva slept
And that was what Eva saw in the pond.
EVA'S FIRST ADVENTURE.
OW long she lay there asleep the child
did not know. It might only have been
for a few minutes; it might have been
for hours. Yet, when she did awake, and think
it was time for her to go home, she did not under-
stand where she could be. The place seemed the
same, yet not the same,-as though some wonder-
ful change had come over it during her sleep.
There was the pond, to be sure, but was it the
same pond? Tall trees grew round it, yet their
branches were bare and leafless. A little brook
ran into the pond, which she was sure that she
never had seen there before. Was she still asleep?
No. She was- wide awake. She sprang to her
feet and looked around. The green toad was
gone, so was the moon-face; her father's house
16 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
was nowhere to be seen; there was no sun, but it
was not dark, for a light seemed to come from the
earth, and yet the earth itself did not shine;
mountains rose in the distance; but, strangest of
all, these mountains sometimes bore one shape,
sometimes another; at times they were like great
crouching beasts, then again like castles or palaces,
then, as you looked, they were mountains again.
Strange shadows passed over the pond, strangeL
shapes flitted among the trees.
Eva did, not know how the change had been
made, still less did she guess that she was now
Yet it was all so singular that, as she looked
upon the changing mountain forms, and the
quaint shadows, a sudden longing came over her,
with a desire to go home, and she turned away
from the pond. And as she did so, a little fra-
grant purple violet, the last that was left of all
the flowers which she had gathered, and which
had been tangled in her curls, fell to the ground;
melting into fragrance as it did so; and as it fell,
there passed from Eva's mind all recollection of
father, mother, home, and the little brother coo.
Eva's First Adventure. 17
ing in his cradle: the changing mountain forms
seemed strante no longer; she forgot to wonder
at the singular earth-light, and at the absence of
the sun; and noticing for the first time that she
was standing in a little path which ran along the
pond, and then followed the course of the little
brook, whose waters seemed singing the words,
" Follow, follow me !" Eva wondered no longer,
but first stooping to pick up a little stick, in shape
like a boy's cane, with a knob at one end, just
like a roughly carved head, and which was'lying
just at her feet, she walked along the little path,
which seemed made expressly for her to walk in.
She walked on and on, as she thought, for
hours, yet there came neither sunset nor moon-
rise, and there were no stars in the sky, which
seemed nearer the earth than she had ever seen it
before. -There were clouds, to be sure, of shapes
as strange as those of the mountains, which passed
and repassed each other, although there was no
wind to move them. Everything was silent.
Even the trees, swaying, as they did, to and fro,
moved noiselessly; the only sound, save Eva's
light steps, which brpke the stillness was the
8 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
silvery ripple of the brook, which kept company
with the path Eva trod, and whose waters mur-
mured, gently, "Follow, follow me !"
And Eva followed the murmuring brook, which
seemed to her like a pleasant companion in this
silent land, where, even as there was no sound,
there was no sign of life; nothing like the real
world which the child had left, and of which,
with the fall of the little violet from her curls, she
had lost all recollection; even as though that
world had never existed for her. Once or twice,
as she went on, holding her little stick in her
hand, she imagined that she saw child-figures
beckoning to her; but, upon going up to them,
she always found that either a rock, or a low,
leafless shrub, or else a rising wreath of mist, had
Yet, though she was alone, with no one near
her, not even a bird to flit merrily from tree to
tree, nor an insect to buzz across her path, Eva
felt and knew no fear, and not for a moment did
she care that she was alone. The silvery ripple
of the little brook, along which her path lay,
sounded like a pleasant voice in her ears; when
Eva's First Adventure. 19
thirsty, she drank of its waters, which seemed to
serve alike as food and drink; when tired, she
would lie fearlessly down upon its grassy margin,
and sleep, as she would imagine, only for a few
minutes, for there would be no change in the
strange sky nor in the earth-light when she
would awake from what it had been when she
lay down; and yet in reality she would sleep as
long as she would have done in her little bed at
For two whole days, which yet seemed as only
a few hours, the child followed the brook. Dur-
ing this time she had felt no desire to leave the
path; she had unhesitatingly obeyed the rippling
voice of the brook, which seemed to say, "Fol-
low, follow me!" But now there was a change:
the water, at times, encroached upon the path,
and rocks obstructed the current, around which
little waves broke and dashed, while strange little
flames, which yet did not burn, and gave no heat,
started from the waves, dancing on them; and
misty shapes, more definite than those she had first
seen, beckoned to her to come to them. Now,
Eva felt an irresistible longing to leave the brook,
20 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
and wander away; far, far into the deep forest,
away from the dancing flames and the beckoning
And once or twice she did leave the path, and
turn her back upon the brook. But every time
that she stepped off the beaten track, faint though
it was, her feet grew heavy, and clung to the
earth, so that she could scarcely move; and the
waves of the brook leaped higher and higher;
and the dancing flames grew brighter; and the
silvery voice, louder and clearer than ever, would
call, "Follow, follow mel" till the child was al-
ways glad to return to the path, and then once
again the way would grow easy to her feet, and
the water would resume its former tranquillity.
On, on she went, still following the course of
the brook. But at last a new sound mingled,
though but faintly, with its musical ripple,-the
distant voice of falling waters. And when first
this new tone reached Eva's ears, a few signs of
life began to show themselves,-a sad-colored
moth flitted lazily across the path into the forest,
-a slow-crawling worm or hairy caterpillar hid
itself under a stone as Eva passed,-the bright
Eva's First Adventure. 21
eyes of a mouse would peep out at her from under
the shelter of a leaf, or else a toad would leap
hastily from the path into the waters of the
Still Eva walked onward, more eagerly than
ever, for though the "Follow, follow me!" of
the brook was now silent, she heard the voice
of the other waters, and at every turn in the path
she looked forward eagerly for the little joyous
cascade she expected to see. For it she looked,
yet in vain: though the sound of the waters grew
louder, she saw nothing, till at last a sudden gleam
of golden light, from a long opening in the forest,
fell across the now placid waters of the brook;
and Eva looked up to see, far away in this open-
ing, a fountain playing in clouds of golden spray,
amid which danced sparkles of light; and the
path, parting abruptly from the brook which it
had followed so long, led down the opening in
the forest directly to this play of waters, whose
voice Eva had heard and followed.
And as she turned away from the little brook,
whose course and her own had so long been the
same, it seemed to her that even the silvery ripple
22 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
of its waters died away into silence; and, looking
back once more, after she had taken a few steps,
upon the way by which she had come, lo! the
brook and its waters had wholly disappeared, and
an impenetrable forest had already closed up the
path behind her.
TIE GIFT OF THE FOUNTAIN.
HAVE said that Eva wondered at no-
thing which came to pass in this land
through which she was wandering; no-
thing surprised her, but the most singular occur-
rences appeared natural; and so it did not seem
at all strange to her that the path and the brook
should be swallowed up, as it were, by the dark,
hungry, impenetrable forest; and it was almost
with a feeling of pleasure at the change that after
the one hurried glance she gave to the path by
which she had come, and which was now no
longer to be seen, that she went, still holding
the little stick in her hand, up the opening be-
tween the trees to the beautiful fountain.
And as she drew near, the bright waters of the
fountain played higher and higher,'and sparkled
24 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
and glistened in golden beauty; and rainbows of
many colors surrounded it, so that Eva longed to
dip her hands in its joyous flow, while the wa-
ters as they fell tinkled merrily like silvery fairy
bells; and she came nearer and nearer, thinking
she had never heard such sweet music as this
water made, till she was within a few feet of the
But when there she paused. For, out of the
earth,-all round and even under the dropping
spray and the falling waters,-sprang myriads of
little rainbow-colored flames, which danced -to
and fro among and under the water-drops,-like a
circle of tiny, fiery sentinels, guarding the fount-
ain. And Eva, afraid to cross this circle of
flames, for which she was unprepared, would not
have ventured nearer, but that at this very mo-
ment the little stick which she held turned in her
hand, and pointed downward; and then Eva saw
that it pointed to a little path, like that by which
she had come, which ran around the fountain;
and the child followed the path, until she had
walked once, twice, thrice, around the playing
waters, and yet, though she looked for it, found
The Gift of the Fountain. 25
no spot where the little flame-sentinels, like faith-
ful soldiers on duty, would permit her to pass.
And then she would have turned away from the
beautiful water,-her foot, indeed, had left the
path,-when she heard a voice, even sweeter
and more silvery than the voice of the brook,
coming from the very midst of the fountain, and
Eva! Eva! have no fear,
To the fountain's brink come near."
And hearing these words, Eva stood still in
surprise, yet without obeying them. But, after
a moment's pause, the voice repeated the words.
Then, for the first time since her wanderings
had begun, Eva spoke, and her voice sounded
strange in her own ears, low though it was:
How can I cross the fire ?"
A little, low, melodious laugh, like that of a
merry child, answered her; and when Eva looked
to see whence it came, she saw that the little knot
upon the end of her cane was a real head, that
the lips were laughing, and that from the queer
eyes came two funny little blue flames; and as
26 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
Eva looked at it, very much tempted to throw it
away, the head laughed again, and then the lips
parted and said:
"Flames, like these, of shadow birth,
May not harm a child of earth."
Then the voice was silent. But a thousand
rainbow-colored bubbles glowed at once all over
the waters of the fountain; and on each bubble
there stood and danced a tiny elf, clad in bright
colors; shapes so light and airy that their frail
supports never failed them; and the tiny flames
grew brighter, and then, as Eva still hesitated,
fearing yet to cross them, the lips of the little
head spoke once more:
'Neath thy step they will expire-
Fear not, Eva; cross the fire."
Hearing this, Eva stepped forward. As she
did so, the little stick dropped or slipped from
her hand, and, rolling into the fountain, disap-
peared in its waters; and at every step she took
she saw that the little flames died away, as the
voice had said, under her feet; till, when she
The Gjit of the Fountain. 27
reached the fountain's brink, they were all gone,
and no trace of them was left. As she looked at
the waters, they seemed to become solid, and
shape themselves into an image carved as it were
out of pure, shining gold, yet glowing with many
colors; and then, slowly, slowly, with a sound
like distant music, the beautiful, wonderful thing
began to sink into the earth; and Eva, her tiny
hands clasped, her fair cheeks flushed, her soft
blue eyes sparkling, stood in silence and looked.
And just as the magic fountain, which, when the
child first came up to it, had been so high that
its waters played far above her head, had sunk so
low that Eva, had she wished, might have laid
her hand upon its summit, she saw, cradled as it
were, on the very crest of what had been the
golden water, a tiny figure; not like one of the
elves which had danced on the rainbow-bubbles,
but like a sleeping child, which Eva thought, at
first, was only a doll lying there,-in its green-
and-scarlet velvet dress; and for a moment the
slow, descending motion of the fountain stopped,
and Eva heard these words, in the same voice
which had spoken before through the lips of the
28 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
little head, though this time it came from the
"Take it, Eva, 'tis thy fate,
See, for thee the waters wait."
Obedient to the voice, the child stretched forth
her hand, and as her slight fingers closed upon
the little, motionless form, a bright and dazzling
crimson light seemed to flash everywhere, and the
water, losing its solidity, began once more to
gleam and sparkle, and to sink again into the
earth; and in another moment it was gone, and
in the place where the fountain had played there
was now a bed of soft, green moss, through and
around which was twined a vine, whose leaves
were mingled with clusters of bright scarlet ber-
ries. Then for the first time she missed her little
stick; and she looked for it, but it was nowhere
to be found.
And then the sky grew dark, as the glorious
crimson light slowly faded away, and one by one
stars peeped out from the sky; and Eva, still
clasping the little figure which had come so
strangely to her, to her heart, lay down quietly
upon the soft, green moss, which seemed to have
The Gift of the Fountain. 29
sprung up there expressly as a bed for her, and
beforemany minutes had passed she was asleep.
But while she slept, there hovered over her
two fair white forms, who looked at her and
smiled, and then one of them whispered to the
other, in the silvery voice of the brook:
"The worst is over."
"No," the other replied. "Although the boy
is safe, for a time, in the hands of his protector,
his punishment is not yet over. Love must teach
him obedience,-that alone can appease and work
out the will of Fate."
"And we can do no more for him !"
"We can only wait, and hope."
A moment later, and the two bright forms
were gone. And, watched by the twinkling stars,
lulled by the low murmur of the gentle breeze
playing among the trees of the great forest, the
fair child slept, holding clasped to her innocent
breast the helpless figure which had come to her
as the gift of the fountain.
THE FIRST MOONRISE.
UT sleep does not last forever, and after
a time Eva awoke. And when she first
sat up, and looked around her, she could
not understand, for a moment, how it could be
that everything was so changed; why the brook
should be gone, and its voice silenced; the path
no more to be seen; and how she should be
sitting on this soft bed of velvety-green moss,
with the little figure lying in her lap. Then, all
at once, she remembered all that had happened
the day before, -and as she thought it over,
like a pleasant, yet indistinct dream, she recalled
the two fair forms which had hovered over her
sleep,-faintly conscious of theirpresence, though
unaware of the words which they had spoken.
Whether they were real, or only a dream, Eva did
The First Moonrise. 31
not know; she only recalled them mistily; for, in
this strange, silent land, through which she was
wandering, she never knew what was real or what
unreal,-it was all alike to her.
And as nothing that happened astonished her,
so never for one moment did her thoughts go
back to the father and mother she had left, or to
the little baby-brother cooing in his cradle. It
was as though they never had existed, so com-
pletely were they forgotten. The Present, such
as it was, had effaced all memory of that Past.
Sitting on her soft, mossy bed, still holding
in her little hands the motionless little figure
- which the fountain had left her, and which, Eva
knew,-though how she knew it she could not
tell,-was something to be cared for and guarded,
as being more helpless than herself. Eva thought
over all the adventures of the day before, and
while she wondered what would come next, she
wished she could once more hear the pleasant
murmur of the brook which had guided her, for
what purpose she knew not, to this spot.
Only a few moments had passed since the child
awoke, when a low, musical chime rang through
32 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
the forest. It died away and then returned; and
then came again and again, in tones so marvel-
lously sweet that Eva, who had just taken the
little figure into her hands, dropped him into her
lap, and pushed her long golden curls away from
her face, the better to listen to the melody.
Once more it came, and once more died away
into silence. And then there was a low, rushing
sound, and, far in the distance, Eva saw arise, as it
were from out of the earth, among the trees, the
tiny silver crescent of a young new moon,-and as
she looked at it, it rose higher and higher, and
faster and faster, till it reached, in a few minutes,
the very centre of the sky, the child's blue eyes
still following it; and when once there it paused,
and floated among the strange, gleaming clouds,
which surrounded it, like a little shining boat.
With a sudden impulse Eva bent down and
kissed the little figure lying in her lap; and then
she looked up at the crescent of the moon, as
upon the face 6f an old friend; and she would
have sat there longer watching it, but that all at
once a little, weak voice said:
"I am awake again, and there is my home."
"-taking off the plumed hat which he wore, he made her
a very low bow."
The First Moonrise. 33
Then there came a hurried exclamation of sur-
prise, and Eva looked down from the moon's
crescent to see that the little figure which she had
taken from the crest of the fountain had suddenly,
as it were, been gifted by her kiss, with life, mo-
tion, and speech, and that he was now standing in
her lap, evidently as much astonished at seeing her
as she was at the change which had come over
But their mutual surprise did not last; for the
little mannikin began to laugh as Eva's blue eyes
grew larger and rounder, and when at last she
asked, Who are you?" he put his head to one
side, in the most comical manner, and, taking off
the plumed cap which he wore, he made her a
very low bow.
"I know now who you are," he said. "You
are Eva, and you will have to take care of me,-
that is all you were sent here for."
Eva laughed. "Suppose I should not want to
take care of such a little thing as you are?"
"You will not have any choice in the matter,-
you cannot help yourself."
34 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
"Because THEY have said it."
"I may not choose to do it."
"What is the use of talking," the boy went on,
"when you know that you will?"
And such were the answers that he persisted in
giving to all her inquiries.
You said you knew who I was," Eva went on;
"bitt how did you know it?"
"THEY told me."
"Who are THEY?"
"THEY led you here to me, and for me. You
must not ask so many questions."
"May I not even ask your name ?"
"You ought to know that without my telling
you. But, as you don't, I will answer you. It is
"Aster? Aster?" Eva slowly repeated; "it
seems to me that I have heard that name before."
"You never did," was the somewhat sullen an-
swer; "for no one but myself has any right to it."
"Yet I am very sure that I have heard it be-
fore, at- "
"Hush! hush! You must never say that here,"
said the miniature boy, climbing up on Eva's
The First Moonrise. 35
shoulder, and laying his hand upon her lips. "You
know as well as I do that you never heard my
"I thought I had," Eva said, looking lovingly
at the little figure nestling among her golden
curls; but I now know that I never did. Still, I
would like to know who you are. Are you a fairy ?"
"I am not a fairy, but you are all mine," Aster
said, gayly. "But you must be careful with me,
and never lose me, or else- "
"I do not know.- THEY are watching us."
Who "THEY" were, Eva could not induce him
to say. For even when he did try to explain, his
words were all so confused that Eva could not
understand at all what he meant, although he
seemed to speak plainly; and the only thing that
she could really learn from him was this,-that she
must not ask questions, and that THEY were THEY.
Which is all very strange to us; but it appears
that Eva was at last satisfied, because Aster seemed
to think that she should understand it just as he
did, and that nothing further need, consequently,
be said on the subject.
WHAT ASTFR WAS.
OR several days the two, Eva and Aster,
wandered through the forest with no
object in view, and returned every even-
ing to rest upon the soft, mossy bed which now
covered the place where the golden fountain had
once played. The scarlet berries of the-vine sur-
rounding it gave them food. The young moon,
floating in the sky, gave them light; for while she
shone, it was their day; when, suddenly as she
arose, she would drop from the centre of the sky,
then came their night; and the hours of her
absence were spent in sleep.
So, at stated intervals, the moon sprang sud-
denly from the earth, shone there, replacing the
faint earth-light which, during her absence, had
guided Eva, and which still shone when she wyas
not to be seen; then, after her hours were over,
What Aster was. 37
she as suddenly descended; and her rising and
her setting were alike accompanied by the same
weird music which had heralded her first coming,
though its notes were fainter than those which had
hailed the rising of the young new moon.
But every time that the moon returned it
seemed to Eva that she grew brighter and larger,
and that she shed more light upon the earth. And
as the light grew brighter, pale white flowers
began here and there to bloom, flowers which
drooped and closed their petals as soon as the
moon fell from the sky; flowers which, as Eva
thought; murmured a low song as she passed them,
yet a song.whose words she never could distin-
guish. And at last she noticed that, as the silver
crescent of the moon broadened, the slight form
of Aster seemed to grow and to expand, so that
he was no longer the tiny doll-like figure which
she had taken from the fountain's crest, but more
like a boy of four years old.
Yet this change, although it was singular, was
only a source of pleasure to the child. It gave
her a companion, not merely a plaything, for
until now she had looked upon Aster in that light,-
38 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
something which, though it could talk, walk,-
sleep, and eat, was only a new toy, to be taken care
of and prized as such. She never had looked
upon Aster otherwise.
At last, when the moon had reached her first
quarter, and the two, enjoying her pure light, sat
on their mossy bed, Eva asked the boy the same
question she had asked him the day her first kiss
had awakened him:
"Tell me who you are."
"I am Aster."
"I know that," Eva said, laying her hand on
the boy's shoulder; "but that is only your name."
"I shall be as large as you are, soon," Aster
said, raising his star-like eyes to the moon as he
spoke. When she is round, I shall be as tall as
you are, Eva."
Eva laughed. "How do -you know ?"
"It will be; because it must be."
"You are Aster," Eva said, slowly, "and I
know how you came to me; but why did you
"You will know then."
What Aster was. 39
"When the moon is round."
"Why not now?"
THEY will not let you."
And with this answer Eva was forced to be
content. But every day they would stand side by
side, and every day Aster grew taller and taller;
and every day the moon grew broader and brighter.
"At last she rose, a round, perfect orb, to her
station in the sky; and as Eva, awakened by the
loud music which told of her coming, sat up to
see and wonder at the bright light she cast, Aster
came quietly behind her, and, laying his hands on
her shoulders, said:
"Look at me, Eva. The day has come, and
I am as tall as you are."
Eva sprang to her feet. As she did so, Aster
put his arm around her, and she saw that there
was now no difference in their height,-they were
exactly the same size. And, strange to say, his
clothes had grown with him, and their rich, soft
velvet fitted him now as perfectly as it had done
when Eva first took him, small and helpless, from
the crest of the golden fountain.
"I can tell you now who I am," the beautiful
40 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
boy said, "for to-day THEY cannot silence me;
this one day when I can be my own self again.
You ought to know, Eva, without my telling you,
and you would know, if you were like me; but you
are not as I am."
"Why not?" Eva asked, in surprise.
"Because you are only a little earth-maiden."
Eva laughed. "What is that?" She had wholly,
as we know, forgotten the past.
"I cannot tell you," Aster said, slowly. "I
only know what THEY have told me about you."
"And that ?"
"I do not know. But you are not like me,
Eva. We are very different. Look at your dress,
and then at mine."
In truth, every here and there upon the rich
velvet of Aster's dress were soils and stains, while
not a spot discolored the pure white Eva wore.
"Now do you see?" Aster asked. "You
know that we are in Shadow-Land, and it can
"only affect things which are like itself; it cannot
harm you or deceive you."
"Do you belong here?"
"No," Aster said. "I came from there,"
What Aster was. 41
pointing to the round full moon above their heads.
"I wish I was there again."
"Why don't you go back, then?"
"I can't, unless you help me. THEY who sent
me here say so."
Why did they send you here ?"
"Because up there," pointing to the moon,
"I lost my flower, and everything which is lost
there falls into Shadow-Land, as everything which
is lost in Fairy-Land falls into the Enchanted
River; and so they sent me here to find it again,
because a prince cannot live there without his
flower; and I cannot find it unless you help me.
Now you know who I am, Eva,-the moon-
"Then must I say Prince Aster?"
"No; to you I am only Aster. And I know
that it will be hard for you to find the flower, for
I cannot help you, or tell you what it is like. I
know that the Green Frog has hidden it, and you
are the only person who can help me to find it,
and then you must give it to me. THEY say we
shall have trouble."
"But we will find it at last?"
42 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
"When my punishment for losing it is over.
To-morrow we must leave this place, for after this
moon the moss will be gone."
"You know where to go, then?"
"No; I can only follow you. I have no power
here; you will have to take care of me."
And then Aster began to sing, and this was
the song which he sung:
Till my flower bloom again,
We may seek, yet seek in vain.
Till 'tis plucked by Eva's hand,
We must roam through Shadow-Land.
Only this does Aster know,
Through hard trials he must go;
Eva's hand must guide him on
Till his flower again be won.
She must wander far and near,
Led by songs he may not hear;
Should she lose me from her hand,
Worse my fate in Shadow-Land.
Then Aster threw himself down on the soft
moss at Eva's feet. But when she asked him
where he had learned the words of his song, he
What Aster was. 43
could not tell her. Just then a cloud came over
the face of the moon, hiding her from their sight;
and as the darkness came over everything, only
leaving for a moment the pale earth-light, it
seemed to Eva that there were faces looking at
her, peeping from behind every tree; and then
a light breeze sprang up, just moving the flowers,
and from the bell of one of them seemed to come
these words, all in verse, for in Fairy-Land and in
Shadow-Land people seldom speak in plain prose
as we do:
O'er this spot do THEY have power,
Not here growth Aster's flower.
Wander, Eva, wander on
Till thy hand the prize hath won.
Then the breeze died away, and the voice was
silent; and Eva saw that Aster was asleep, and,
frightened at the faces which made grimaces and
mocked at her, more angrily, she thought, on ac-
count of the warning the flower had sung, she
touched him to awaken him; and as she did so
the cloud passed from the face of the moon, and
as once more her pure, clear light returned,
the ugly, threatening faces vanished, and Aster
44 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
awoke. But when Eva tried to tell him of what
she had seen and heard during his short sleep,
she could only say these words:
Moss shall harden into stone,
Faces mock you o'er the sand;
Leading Aster by the hand,
From this spot ye must be gone.
Then Aster laughed, because Eva declared that
these were not the words which the flower had
spoken; yet every time that she tried to recollect
and repeat them, she could only say the same
thing over. Then she began to try and tell him
about the faces, and when she began to speak of
them, suddenly the full moon sank from the sky,
and all was dark; and then a strange drowsiness
came over the children, and Eva and Aster,
nestled in each other's arms, lay down to sleep
upon the soft, green moss, knowing that with the
next moonrise they must go forth in search, of
Aster's lost flower.
THE BEGINNING OF THE SEARCH.
HEN the two children, after their sleep,
awoke to see the moon rise to her sta-
tion in the sky, they were not surprised
to find that her fair, round proportions were al-
ready changed. But when Eva turned to Aster,
she saw that he, too, was smaller than when they
had lain down to rest; and she knew at once,
almost as if she had been told, that the Moon-
Prince would in future wax and wane as did the
orb from which he had been banished; that this
was part of his punishment; and now she under-
stood why it was that Aster had said she would
have to take care of him. But as she stood, think-
ing of this, Aster suddenly touched her hand, and
directly over the mossy bed on which they had
46 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
slept, and which had never been crushed by their
weight, but was always fresh, Eva saw again the
mocking faces which had disturbed her the night
before; but only for a moment, and then they
were gone. And even as she looked, she saw
that the soft green moss began to shrivel, dry up,
and crumble away, as though in a fire; and a
moment later it was all gone, and in its place
was a heap of rough sand and stone, instead of
the velvety moss and the vine with its scarlet
"The faces have done it," Eva said, clasping
Aster's hand tightly, as she watched the rapid
"The faces!" Aster said, scornfully. "Eva,
you are dreaming; there were no faces there."
"I saw them," Eva began; but Aster inter-
"I tell you, Eva, you saw no faces, there was
nothing there. I told you that the moss would
be gone the next time that the moon rose; and
you see I told you the truth. We must leave this
"Where shall we go?"
The Beginning of the Search. 47
"I don't know. We cannot stay here. What
did the flower say to you, Eva?
When soft moss shall change to stone,
From this spot ye must be gone."
Even as Aster spoke, Eva saw a faint little path
at her feet, like that which she had first followed.
Looking back, wishing it might lead her again to
the pleasant little brook, and that she might re-
turn to it, instead of going on into the forest, she
saw that the sand and stone had grown into a
huge wall, or rather a mound, over which she
never could have climbed, and which would pre-
vent her return. As if Aster had read her
thoughts, he said to her,-
"There is no going back, Eva; we can only
Aster's words were true. The wall of stone,
which a few moments had been enough to build
up behind them, seemed to come closer and
closer, as though to shut them out from the place
where they had been; and, clasping Aster's hand
tightly, Eva and the boy walked slowly on, in the
little path which lay before them.
48 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
For days the two went on, walking while the
moon shone, and sleeping when her light was hid.
At each moonrise they were awakened by the
strains of music, which, as the moon waned, grew
sadder and more mournful; while that accom-
panying her setting became at last a low, sad
moaning, and each day she grew smaller, and,
in sympathy with her, Aster seemed to dwindle
and wane, and he became more and more help-
less, till at last, when the moon was reduced to a
thin crescent, the little prince was once more as
small as he was when Eva first received him.
Yet, through all these changes, the two went
slowly on through the dark forest, which opened
on either side of the path to let them pass, and
closed again behind them. Were they thirsty,
they were sure to find some tiny spring, issuing
as at a wish from the earth; were they hungry,
some wild fruit or berry was always to be found.
But not once did Eva leave the path. What it
was that kept her in it, she could not tell,-
except that every time she felt the slightest desire
to go into the forest, she saw the same hateful
faces which had peeped at her for the first time
The Beginning of the Search. 49
when the cloud had passed over the face of the full
moon, and which had mocked at her from above
the soft mossy bed when it had been turned
into the stony wall which had forced them to go
forward, and she thought they forbade her to go
near them. But Aster, in spite of all her efforts
to detain him in the path, would sometimes run
away from her, saying he saw some beautiful
flower which he must gather, or else some sweet
child-face which smiled upon him; but each time
that he did this, he was sure to hasten back to
Eva, saying that either thorns had pierced or else
"nettles stung him; and then he would hide his
face in the folds of Eva's white dress, trembling,
and saying that THEY were there, and had fright-
Still, Eva could never find out from the boy
who THEY were. For Aster, though he some-
times tried, could not tell her; it seemed as if he
was not allowed to speak, and the child began to
think that the faces which haunted her, and THEY
of whom Aster so often spoke, were only different
manifestations of the same power, which seemed
to follow them wherever they went, seeking an
50 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
opportunity to hurt them, although as yet no harm
had been done.
Once, before Aster grew so small, Eva asked
him why it was that they were thus followed.
"It is not you that THEY are following; THEY
would do me harm if I were to fall into their
hands; but I am safe while you keep me. You
are beyond their reach."
But, though Aster knew this, it seemed to Eva
that he dared, and tried, to put himself in the
power of THEY, whom he seemed to dread,-for
it was only when the faces looked at her from
behind tree or shrub that Aster desired to leave
her, and only then that he spoke of THEY who
always frightened him back to her side. He
never alluded to the flower they sought; only
once, when Eva asked him what it was like,
he said to her:
"I cannot describe it to you; you will know
it when you see it."
How shall I know it ?" Eva asked.
You will know it when the time comes."
But, though Eva looked carefully for the flower,
she never saw it. There were flowers enough
The Beginning of the Search. 51
along the path, but the right one was not to be
seen. She did not know-how could she?-that
the search was only begun, and that not till after
long wanderings and many troubles to Aster
would she be able to find for him the flower which
he had lost, and without which he could never
regain his home.
T last, even the thin crescent of the
moon disappeared, and once more Aster
lay motionless, and, as it were, without
life, the same tiny, helpless thing which Eva had
taken from the crest of the fountain. Once more
she wandered, alone,-for what companionship
could she find in the senseless little figure which
she carried about with her?-through the strange,
dream-like country in which she now found her-
self. But, wherever she went, a feeling she could
not explain nor understand made her hold the
helpless little prince close, never for a moment
letting him pass from her loving clasp.
Once more, too, the faint earth-light shone, in-
stead of the vanished moon. And Eva thought
that while Aster lay helpless, there were fewer
"As day by day the path led them on into the forest, the
trees altered their shape."
Aster's Misfortunes. 53
difficulties in her path; the faces no longer
appeared to torment and harass her; the way
seemed easier to her feet; more and brighter
flowers bloomed along the path; and the misty,
shadowy shapes which were to be seen at inter
vals passing among the close-set trunks of the
trees were fair and lovely to look upon.
But this quiet was not to last. Again, after a
time, the music rang triumphantly through the
forest; and again, as the young moon sprang to
her station overhead, Aster awoke, to all appear-
ance unconscious of the time he had slept, and of
the distance which Eva had carried him. As he
grew, with the moon, it seemed to her that he
was changed; that he was no longer the gentle,
loving boy who had wandered with her when the
first moon shone: something elfish, imp-like, and
changeable had come over him.
Then, too, as day by day the path led them on
into the forest, which seemed endless, the trees
altered their shape. Sometimes they were circled
with huge, twining snakes, which Eva thought
seemed coiled there, ready to seize her as she
passed, though when near them they proved to be
54 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
nothing but huge vines climbing up the trees.
Here and there in the path lay huge stones, which
you might think at first sight were insurmountable,
obstructing their further progress; yet, if either
Eva's foot touched them, or the hem of her white
dress brushed ever so lightly against them, they
would always fade away, like a shadow, into utter
nothingness, or else would roll slowly away to one
side, leaving the path clear. But when Aster saw
the stones he would cry, and say that they would
crush him if he passed them, and the only way in
which Eva could soothe him was by taking him
up in her arms and carrying him past the stones,
while he hid his face, so as not to see them, in
her long, golden curls.
Every now and then, in spite of what he had
often told Eva,-that she, and she only, could
find and give him the flower which he had lost,-
Aster would declare to her that he saw it bloom-
ing in places where she saw nothing but nettles or
ugly weeds, but which he would always insist were
beds of the most beautiful flowers. These flowers,
he said, called to him to come and gather them;
while Eva thought that warning voices bade her
Aster's Misfortunes. 55
pass them by, and that she saw over or else among
them shadows of the same hateful faces which she
dreaded. But it was useless to try and convince
Aster of this; she soon learned that nothing ever
presented the same appearance to him that it did
In consequence, whenever Aster insisted upon
leaving the path, as he often did, Eva watched
him with a kind of terror, and never felt he was
safe unless she led him by the hand. Placed, as
he was, under her care, she felt sure that when
with her no danger could come near him, nothing
harm him. Still, if he had enemies in this great
forest, he had friends, too; for once, when he
stooped to gather a flower which bloomed near
the path, she heard it say:
"Guard thou well thy charge to-day,
There is danger in the way."
But Aster. laughed joyfully, as he looked up
without gathering the flower, and said :
"Did you hear what the flower told me, Eva?
That was the reason why I did not pick it, for it
said that I should have much pleasure to-day."
56 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
Eva only smiled; she said nothing; she had
learned that Aster would not bear being contra-
dicted. But she quietly resolved to be more
watchful than ever; for, from what she had heard
the flower say, she thought that efforts would be
made to take the little prince from her.
She was wrong, however, for the day passed,
the moon disappeared, and, as nothing had hap-
pened to disturb them, she began to think that
perhaps she had been mistaken, and that Aster
had been right regarding the words which the
flower had spoken; for he had, all that day, been
cheerful and gentle. But, that night, she was
awakened from her sleep by Aster's talking, as
"though to himself, in a rambling, disconnected
manner, of THEY whom he seemed to fear; and
this being the first time for days-not since he
had awakened from the stupor into which the dis-
appearance of the moon had thrown him-that he
had mentioned or even appeared to think of these
nameless yet formidable beings, she guessed,
seeing that Aster's words were spoken, as it were,
in a dream, and unconsciously to himself, that
the coming day contained more danger to him
than any of the preceding ones.
Aster's Misfortunes. 57
It was, notwithstanding, with a feeling of relief
that Eva at last saw the moon arise, and once
more she and Aster set out on their journey. He
never referred to the words which had awakened
her. No strange sights or sounds came to disturb
them. There was utter stillness all around; and
as hour after hour passed, and Aster walked quietly
by her side, Eva began to think that her anxiety
had all been for nothing, and she relaxed a little
of her watchfulness.
At last they came to a place where every plant
along the path was hung with filmy, gossamer,
delicate webs, and in each web sat a spider. And
every spider was different,-no two of them being
alike. And, as they passed these patient spinners,
Aster clung closely to Eva's hand, saying that he
was afraid of being entangled among their webs,
or else stung by them; although to her it appeared
as though the spiders did not even notice them as
they passed. Then all of a sudden the webs and
the insects were gone; and the children saw crawl-
ing slowly in the path, as if it was afraid of them
and wanted to get out of their way, a spider larger
than any of those they had seen; a spider whose
58 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
body was ringed with scarlet and gold, whose long,
slender black legs shone like polished jet, and
whose eyes were like bright-green emeralds; a
spider handsome enough to be the king of all the
And while Eva was admiring the beautiful colors
of the insect, Aster let go her hand, and, stooping
down, passed his finger gently over its gold and
scarlet back. Then the spider raised its head, and
looked at Eva with its bright-green eyes, which,
as Eva gazed at them, appeared to grow larger and
brighter, and dazzled her own; and then a mist
seemed to come over them, and everything began
to fade slowly away; and she never noticed how
Aster went, slowly, nearer and nearer to the in-
sect, crouching down into the path as he did so,
nor how the spider, by degrees, began to grow
larger, and moved towards the side of the path,
till a sudden cry from Aster, "Eva! Eva! help
me!" roused her from the trance in which she
stood, in which she saw nothing but the emerald
eyes, like two gleaming lights; and then she saw
that the beautiful spider had enveloped Aster in a
large web which it had spun around him, and was
Aster's Misfortunes. 59
dragging him off the path, to carry him away
But Eva was not going to lose her charge.
Springing forward, she threw her arms around
him. And as her dress touched the web, it fell
off, releasing him; and the spider, unfolding a
pair of blue wings, flew into the forest with a loud
cry of disappointment; and as it flew away, its
shape changed, and Eva, looking after it, with her
arms still around Aster, saw that it had one of the
terrible faces which she had seen so often before.
Then it disappeared, and the two' went on, or
rather tried to go on, for Aster complained that
his feet were fastened to the ground; and then
Eva saw that they were still tangled in some of the
spider's web; and both Eva and Aster tried in
vain to break it. But Eva was nearly in despair,
when, as she stooped, one of her long golden
curls brushed against the web, and then it melted
away and vanished like smoke.
Then, and not till then, were they able to go
on. But Aster walked forward unwillingly, and
complained that he was tired, and began to insist
upon Eva's stopping to rest. But she felt that
6o Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
they would not be safe until after the moon was
gone, and so they went on. At every mossy
stone, every fair cluster of flowers, Aster would
insist upon stopping, but Eva would not listen to
him, for she always heard, at these places, a
friendly voice which said, "Go on, go on;" and
so they went on.
But at last Aster, who did nothing but complain
of weariness, told Eva that he could and would go
no farther. Seeing a great, velvety, green mush-
room growing in the path, he ran and sat down
upon it, saying that it was a seat which had been
made and put there for him, and that Eva should
not share it.
He had scarcely said this, had scarcely seated
himself, when the mushroom changed into a great
green frog, which, with Aster seated astride upon
its back, began to hop nimbly away in the direc-
tion of the forest. But Eva, whose eyes had never
for a moment left the boy, sprang forward, and
before Aster-pleased at the motion of the frog-
could say a word, she had dragged him off his
strange steed, which turned and snapped at her,
but, instead of touching her, caught the skirt of
Aster's Misfortunes. 61
Aster's coat in his mouth and held on to it till
Eva's efforts tore it from him, leaving, however, a
small piece of the velvet in the frog's mouth.
Even then he tried to seize Aster again, and it was
not till Eva's dress touched him that he turned to
leave them, still holding in his mouth the scrap
torn from Aster's coat, and as he hopped off the
path he faded away just like a shadow.
Then, too, the moon sank from the sky, and
the two children, completely worn out, lay down
and slept, and Eva knew that for a little while, at
least, Aster was safe, because as she lay down she
heard a little song which said:
Tranquil be your sleep,
Peaceful be your rest,
We a watch will keep,
Naught shall you molest;
Sleep, Eva, sleep.
Where our light may shine,
Where we weave our charm,
In our magic line,
Naught may cause you harm;
Sleep, Aster, sleep.
Then all was still. But though Eva, trusting to
this song, was not afraid to lie down and sleep,
62 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
she never knew that while they did sleep a circle
of tiny shining lamps, like fairy-lamps, gleamed
all around them,-a magic circle which nothing
could pass. And although both the spider and
the green frog returned, -bringing with them the
piece of Aster's coat, by means of which they
hoped to steal him away from Eva while he was
asleep, they could not pass the circle which the
Light Elves had drawn around the sleeping pair,
and, after many vain efforts to cross it, they van-
And the grateful elves had watched and saved
Aster because Eva, that morning, seeing a shape-
less, helpless worm lying near a stone, which was
about to fall and crush it, had tenderly picked up
the worm, and laid it carefully on a cool, green
leaf, out of danger. The grateful Light Elf,-for
such she was,-being compelled to wear the form
of a worm while the moonlight lasted, had come
with her companions to return what service she
could and give Eva a peaceful rest.
So, as ever, Good overcomes Evil, and no ser-
vice, no matter how small or how trifling it may
seem, is ever wasted or thrown away.
WHAT ASTER DID.
HE farther the progress which the children
made into the forest, the wilder and more
singular became the country through
which they passed. Shadows cast by no visible
forms went before them in the path,-shadows
which shook, moved, and trembled; which seemed
as if they might all at once become real forms;
shadows which had something dreadful about them,
so that Eva was glad they were always in advance of
her, and that her foot never had to touch the ground
on which they lay. The color of the moon's light
was changed. She shone with a pale greenish lustre.
No green plants, no beautiful flowers, grew in the
stony, rocky soil through which their path now
lay. It produced things like sticks full of thorns.
Under the stones lay hidden long, slender lizards,
"64 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
or coiled-up serpents with forked and fiery-red
tongues; things like dry twigs, which would sud-
denly display many legs and run away. Slow-
crawling, hairy caterpillars, and round, fat, slimy
worms, lay everywhere. Things like insects,
which yet had no life, grew, instead of flowers,
on the thorny sticks which stood among the
stones. One of these things, in shape like a drag-
on-fly, Aster picked; but he immediately dropped
it, and said that it had stung him; and from that
time Eva thought that he became more and more
perverse, and that he was every day less like the
gentle, affectionate boy she had been so glad to
receive as a companion. She saw, too, that, while
-her own dress retained its spotless whiteness which
nothing seemed to affect, his became every day
more and more soiled and stained.
She missed, too, the low, sweet songs which had
been sung by the flowers. To be sure, she had
not always been able to distinguish their words,
but they had been friendly, and had warned her
of every danger before it came; but this was all
over. Every night, as soon as the moon was gone,
creatures like bats, with shining heads, came in
What Aster did. 65
great numbers, flying around, and moaning in a
sad, mournful way which was most pitiful to hear.
As the moon neared the full, stranger shadows
and shapes came near. Yet the two went on, fol-
lowing the path, though Eva sometimes imagined
that the inhabitants of this strange country were
opposed to their passing through it. The music
which had been always heard at the rising and set-
ting of the moon grew fainter and fainter, till at
last her ascent and fall came in perfect silence.
Then the strange shadows disappeared, but the
path led through a stonier and more rocky coun-
try, where all was wild and barren, and where,
after the moon was gone, little, dancing flames
played on the stones. Sometimes it was hard, in-
deed almost impossible, for the two children to
climb over the rough places in their path; and
Aster was very often discouraged; but Eva perse-
vered, for she felt that the flower they sought could
never be found in this barren and dreary land.
I have said that Aster became every day more
obstinate and perverse. Sometimes Eva thought
that the strange flower, like a dragon-fly, which
he had picked, and which he said stung him, had
66 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
changed him, and that was the reason why he
tried to annoy her in every possible way. He
knew how uneasy she was when he was not with
her; yet, knowing this, it was his greatest delight
to hide himself behind some large stone, and after
she had looked for him for a long time without
finding him, afraid that his enemies had carried
him off, he would jump out upon her with a loud
mocking cry; he would pull her hair, he would
try to soil her white dress, by throwing mud and
dirt upon it, to make it, as he said, like his own,
which was all stained and soiled, and then, when
he found that he could not discolor its whiteness,
he would throw himself down on the ground, and
kick and scream, and tell Eva that he hated her,
and that he wished THEY would come and carry
One day, when Aster had been worse than ever,
and the way had been stonier and harder than it
had ever been before, Eva began to think that it
was of no use to go on, or to look for the flower lost
so long ago by the imp-like boy, whose powers
of annoying her seemed to increase as he grew
smaller with the moon. She sat down upon one
What Aster did. 67
of the rough stones, and great tears gathered in
her eyes. And as, one by one, they rolled down
her cheeks and fell to the ground, everything
around her seemed to grow vague and dim; and
at her feet, just where the tear-drops fell, there
came a bed of round green leaves, under whose
shelter bloomed and nodded a multitude of tiny
purple flowers; violets, whose sweet fragrance,
rising, made a misty cloud, through which Eva
caught faint glimpses of a pond, and a house
near it, and then the house seemed to change
into a cosy parlor. And by the window of this
parlor a lady was sitting sewing, and rocking a
cradle with her foot, and singing to a baby boy
who was kicking and crowing in the cradle; and
then the child heard her mother's voice calling,
softly, "Eva, Eva!" But before these memories
came fully back, Aster came up, and angrily
crushed and trampled the sweet violets under his
,feet; and as he did so the cloud and its pictures
disappeared, and Eva forgot them; only she was
very sorry for the dear little flowers that Aster
Poor little flowers, which tried to do her good I
68 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
For it seemed to her that with their last breath
of perfume there came a low voice, which whis-
pered. "Beware of the stones,"-and that was
all. And then she asked Aster why he had de-
stroyed the harmless flowers, which had only come
to warn them.
"They only came to do me harm," Aster said,
angrily. "They would have taken you away from
me, and I should never have seen you again. You
shall not go away from me yet, for I can never
get home without you; after I have done with
you, why, then you may go."
"Where?" Eva asked, pained at this selfish
"Into what is to be,-out of Shadow-Land into
what is to come, but is not yet."
"I do not understand you."
"You will know when the time comes. I
crushed the flowers because they were. part of
what is to come; they had no right here."
Nothing more was said; .but Aster seemed rest.
less and uneasy until they left the place where
the violets had bloomed. Yet nothing disturbed
them, and on they went, till Eva began to wonder
What Aster did. 69
where the stones could be of which the voice had
said, "Beware !"
At last, when there was only a tiny crescent of
the moon, like a faint silver line, floating in the
sky, and Aster's figure, like it, was once more
reduced to its smallest dimensions, the forest
through which they had wandered for so long
ended; and as they passed from it, a low cry of
surprise from Aster made Eva look down, as she
saw that his eyes were fixed upon the earth; and
then she saw with equal surprise that, while she
walked along the rough, stony path without leav-
ing any impression, every step that Aster took
left a deep, plain track, and that in each of these
tracks there was either a frog or a spider, which
would disappear while she looked at them.
Then a sudden turn in the path brought them
to a place where a huge pile of rocks, like an im-
mense stone wall built by giants, rose up before
them. A faint breath of violets seemed to come,
and then pass away, and as it did, Eva knew that
these were the stones of which she had been
At that very moment there was a flash of
70 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
light, and a star fell from the sky, near the
"A falling star, how pretty it is !" Eva said, as
she watched the bright thing, which seemed to
fall behind the stone wall. "Did you see it,
"You don't know anything, Eva," was his re-
ply. "I told you once before that everything
which was lost in the moon fell into Shadow-
Land, and that was something bright which fell
But this had nothing to do with the wall, which
must be climbed. How, Eva did not know. She
was almost afraid to try it; and so she stood,
looking at it, when Aster, who, ever since he had
crushed the violets, had followed her in silence,
except when he had spoken of the shooting star,
with his eyes bent on the ground, suddenly ran
forward to the wall, and began to look eagerly
into every crevice between the stones.
"What are you looking for?" Eva asked him.
"Come back to me, Aster; it is not safe for you
there without me."
"I will look," Aster said. "The bright thing
What Aster did. 71
you called a star was my flower. It is here, and
I am going to find it."
"Don't!" Eva said, imploringly, as the boy
tried to creep into one of the crevices between
the stones. "Remember, Aster, that the moon
is nearly gone, and if she should disappear, you
will go to sleep, and then you will have to stay in
there until she returns."
"I don't care!" Aster said, crossly. "If, as
I know I shall, I find my flower in here, the moon
will have no more power over me, for I shall then
be myself; and you may go on alone into what
will come. Besides, the piece which was torn off
my coat is in there, and I am going to get it. If
I do go to sleep, I can lie down in here, and rest;
you can mark the place and wait for me, if you
choose. I don't intend to obey you any longer;
you are nothing but a little girl, and I am a
Eva's hand was on Aster's shoulder, and when
he found she would not -remove it, he raised his
own, and struck her. Not till then did the child
unwillingly release him, seeing that all her efforts
to detain him would be in vain. Then, without
72 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
saying another word, Aster crept slowly into the
crevice. And Eva, picking up a white stone
which lay at her feet, made a mark over the
place with it. As she did this, the faint silver
light of the moon faded from the sky; there was
a loud croaking as of frogs, and then she heard
the shrill cry of the spider which had spun the
web around Aster; and then it grew very dark,
and a sudden drowsiness came over her, which
she could not resist; and, lying down upon a
stone under the crevice into which Aster had
crept, Eva fell asleep.
THE DOOR iN THE WALL.
T was with a start that, after the dark-
ness had gone, Eva awoke from the dull,
heavy sleep into which she had fallen;
and for a moment she could not recollect how it
was that she should be lying upon a stone at the
foot of this huge rocky wall, or why she should
be alone, without Aster near her. She looked for
him, thinking that perhaps he might have hidden
himself, only to tease her; but he was nowhere
to be found. She called him, hoping that he
might hear and answer her; but there was no
reply,-only the rocks echoed back the sound
of her own voice, which said, "Aster, Aster!
where are you?" and then another echo seemed
to answer, mockingly, "Where?"
74 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
But all this only lasted for a few moments.
Then all at once Eva remembered the falling
star; the warning which the violets had given her;
the blow, which, coming as it did from Aster's
hand, had so deeply grieved her; her efforts to
detain him at her side, which had all proved
useless; and how, after the boy had crept into
one of the crevices of the wall, declaring he went
there in search of his flower, she had picked up a
stone, which she now found she still held in her
hand, and marked the place. Then she felt re-
lieved, for she knew that this was the time when
Aster would be asleep, as he always was when the
moon was absent, and consequently he could not
move from the place into which he had crept.
She thought, therefore, that, whenever she chose,
she would find him, and, taking him again under
her care, carry him away from this barren and
Encouraged and relieved by this thought, she
did not look for Aster any longer, but went to a
little spring bubbling up between two rough
stones, and which was the only pleasant thing she
could see in this rocky place. She knelt down
The Door in the Wall. 75
by it, for she was thirsty, to drink from its cool
and sparkling waters, and then to wash her face
and hands in them; and as she dipped her hands
in the spring, the little ripples they made whis-
pered, softly, Over yonder! over yonder !" but
Eva was not sure if she really had heard these
words, or'only imagined them.
Refreshed by the cool water, she went back to
the great, rough, stone wall, intending to secure her
charge, and then try to go on. But what was her
surprise, on returning, as she thought, to the same
stone on which she had slept, to see that there
were so many stones just exactly like it, that she
could not find the one she wanted and, what was
still stranger, she saw that over every little hole,
every tiny cavity in the stone, there was a white
mark exactly like the one which she had made
over the crevice into which Aster had crept, and
she could not say which of them all was hers.
She was in despair for a moment. How was
she to find, among all these holes, each with the
same white mark over it, the one in which Aster
was asleep? Then she remembered that standing
still and looking at the wall would do no good;
76 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
that if she wanted to find Aster she must look for
him; and Eva determined to examine every hole
she saw, in hopes that with patience and perse-
verance she might at last succeed in finding her
lost charge, of whom, in spite of all the trouble he
had given her, she had grown very fond.
But if she had been surprised at seeing a white
mark over every hole, instead of the one she had
made, she was still more astonished when she
saw that in every cranny which she examined
there sat either a large black-legged spider, with
a gold and scarlet back, and eyes which shone in
the dark like little bright stars, or else there
squatted snugly in it a huge green frog, with
a wide mouth and projecting black eyes; while
just beyond her reach there would flutter every
now and then a little green flag, like the scrap of
velvet, as Eva thought, which the teeth of the
frog had torn from Aster's coat.
Yet the child climbed slowly up the wall, fear-
less of the spiders and the frogs, which she knew
had no power to harm her, even if they had
wished it. But seeing them, and knowing, as she
did, that these two creatures, in the forest through
The Door in the Wall. 77
which they had passed, had tried to get possession
of Aster, Eva began to fear that by creeping into
the hole he had put himself in their power, and
that she would never be able to find him again.
She went on, however, looking carefully into
"every tiny cavity, but always with the same result.
No Aster was to be seen: only huge spiders and
squatting frogs stared at her from every cranny.
And, as she climbed up higher and higher, -she
found that the rocky wall was like a giant stair-
case; and when she looked back, noticing that
the stones she displaced, as she climbed up, only
rolled a short time and then made no noise as
they fell, and thinking that after her search was
over she would return to the little spring and-
wait there patiently until the moon rose again,
when, as she hoped, Aster, if she did not find him
now, would wake up and come back to her, she
saw that she could never return to the spring,
For the steps by which she had come were gone,
melting one by one into the face of the rock,
changing into a steep precipice behind her; and
at its foot were curling mists and vapors, among
which she saw dimly the hateful, mocking faces
78 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
she had seen before. Go back she could not, for
every step, as she passed it, melted into the preci-
pice; to look back made her dizzy. She must go
For the first time since she had begun to climb
the wall, which had changed, as she climbed, into,
steps, and then into a precipice, Eva was afraid.
But there was no choice left for her; go on she
must; and, accordingly, on she went, till she came
to a place where the rock rose, so high that she
could not see its top, in a smooth, unbroken wall,
over which she could not possibly climb, and a
narrow path ran along its base; and as yet she had
not seen nor heard anything of the truant Aster.
She walked slowly along the foot of the great
blank wall, tired and discouraged. What to
do now, she did not know. She could not go
back, for there was the frightful precipice; in
front was the wall, along which she was walking.
Poor Eva was almost ready to cry, when all
of a sudden she saw a door, cut in the stone,
and the door was shut. But she heard, behind
this door, the silvery voices and ringing laughter
of children, and then a great longing came over
The Door in the Wall. 79
her to go in and. join them, and she thought that
perhaps Aster might be with them.
Yet, although she tried, she could not open
the door. She heard the merry voices of the
children, and, hearing them as plainly as she did,
she thought it was strange that they did not hear
her and open the door to her; for, try as she
would, she could not open it. And then she
grew tired of trying, and would have gone on,
when, looking once more at the door to see if
there was any way of opening it which she could
possibly have neglected, she saw cut across the
door, in deep, old-fashioned, moss-grown letters,
Then, gathering courage, Eva raised her tiny
hand, and knocked. Once, and no answer came.
Again, and with the same result. A third time,
and then the merry voices of the children, and
their gay laughter, ceased, and Eva hoped that
her appeal was heard.
THE VALLEY OF REST.
VA waited for a moment, with as much
patience as she could, in hopes that the
door might now be opened for her. Vain
hopes, for the ringing laughter and the merry
voices began again; and once more Eva would
have been discouraged, if the thought had not
come that perhaps her gentle knocking had not
been heard, and once more she tapped, louder
this time, at the door.
A voice within immediately asked, "Who
'I-Eva," was the child's reply.
"Eva may enter."
Poor child! She thought the permission was
useless, for the door remained as tightly shut as
TYe Valley of Rest. 81
"Why do you not come in?" the same voice
asked, after a pause. "You are permitted."
"I cannot come in, because the door is shut,"
"Take the key and unlock it."
But Eva, after looking around carefully, could
see no key, and so she said, I do not know where
the key can be."
"Look under your right foot," said the voice
within; and Eva, stepping to one side, saw lying,
just where her foot had been, a queer little key,
which she picked up; and seeing a key-hole among
the quaint letters of the inscription, she found the
little key just fitted it; and on turning it, the door
flew open, and, as it did, a band of beautiful chil-
dren came forward to meet her, though not one
of them crossed the threshold of the door, and
they bade her welcome. But when Eva would
have gone in, it seemed to her that invisible hands
prevented her entrance; and then one of the
children, seeing that she still held in her hand the
white stone she had picked up near the spring,
and with which she had made the mark over Aster's
hiding-place, told her to throw it away, for that
82 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
nothing from Shadow-Land could be brought into
their valley; and then to be careful and not
touch the threshold of the door, but to step over
it; And Eva did as they told her; but when she
threw the white stone over the precipice, it changed
into a large white moth as it left her hand; and
Eva, watching it, saw one of the faces rise from
out of the curling mists to meet it, and then the
moth changed into a face like the one she had
first seen, and then both disappeared among the
mists and vapors. And the moment she passed
through the door, it closed suddenly behind her,
and could not be told from the solid rock; and
Eva saw that she was in a place totally different
from anything she had ever seen before in her
She found that she was now in a large, grassy
valley, in the midst of which was built a beautiful
rose-colored palace, shining like a star. Flowers
of the gayest hues bloomed all through the grass;
fountains of musical water, surrounded with rain-
bows, played here and there; birds and butterflies
of brilliant colors flew among the flowers, and
were so tame that they would alight on the chil-
The Valley of Rest. 83
dren's hands, and the birds were so wise that they
could talk, and tell the most interesting stories,
which you never grew tired of hearing. A little
brook ran sparkling through the valley, and groups
of beautiful children were playing on its banks,
among whom Eva looked-but looked in vain-
The children gathered around her, asking where
she came from, if she was the Queen who was to
reign over them, and if she was not going to live
always with them. And when Eva tried to explain
how she had come, and asked them if they knew
where Aster was, they joined hands and danced in
a circle around her to their own singing, and then
one of them gave her the leaves of a flower to eat.
Now the leaves of this flower were delicious, and
as sweet as honey to the taste, and one never
wearied of eating them; and as Eva ate them, all
memory of Shadow-Land and of Aster faded from
her mind, and she was content to remain in the
valley with the children.
It was a pleasant life that she led in this peace-
ful valley, surrounded, as it was, and shut in by
high, insurmountable, and steep rocks, over which
84 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
nothing without wings could go; in which the
children dwelt, and where there was neither sun
nor moon, but only a soft, rosy light, which never
hurt or dazzled the eyes, and where nothing ever
happened which could disturb the peace of the
place. To chase the brilliant butterflies, to listen
to the songs and stories of the birds, to dance on
the soft green grass, and gather flowers to make
fragrant wreaths and garlands with which to deco-
rate the beautiful palace in which, when darkness
came over the valley, they all assembled, and
where tables, spread with the most delicious fruits,
always stood ready for them,-such was the life
that Eva and the children led in the Valley of
But at last a day came when the children told
Eva that; as their custom was, they must leave the
valley and carry baskets of flowers and fruit to the
Queen for whom they had at first taken her. She
could not go with them now, they said, but the
next time that they went they would take her with
them. They would be gone the next morning
before she was awake, and she would be alone for
that day in the valley; but then they would return;
The Valley of Rest. 85
and the only favor they asked of her was this,-
that she would not go near the brook, nor play
upon its banks, while they were absent.
Eva willingly promised this. Such a little thing
as it was to promise, when she would have the
whole fair valley to herself, to go where she pleased,
and to do what she pleased I It would be very
easy to keep away from the brook.
But when once more the soft, rosy light came,
and the darkness was gone, and Eva awoke to
find herself lying, all alone, on her little bed in
the palace, and to know that all the children were
indeed gone, though only for a time, a strange
restlessness came over her, and she felt that she
could not stay all alone in the palace. She would
go out of it into the valley. But she was no better
off there. She gathered flowers and made beauti-
ful wreaths and bouquets, but there was no one to
admire them when they were made. The rain-
bows around the fountains were less brilliant; the
birds were all gone with the children, so that she
could not listen to their songs or the stories they
might have told her. She might play and dance,
but what fun was there in that, when she had no
86 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
companions to dance and play with her? Eva
thought she never'had spent such a stupid, long, -
dull day in all her life; and she wished it was
over. The only thing which seemed as merry as
ever was the little brook, which she had promised
to avoid, yet which rippled along so joyously that
it was as much as Eva could do to keep away
But she remembered her promise to the children,
and turning her back upon the brook, she went
and sat down near one of the fountains. She had
only been there- for a few moments, when she felt
something pull her dress; and looking round to
see what it was,-wondering if the children could
possibly have returned,-she saw, to her great sur-
prise, a huge green toad, which had hold of her
dress, and which, when she looked at it, said:
Then Eva knew that she had seen the toad
before, and she began to wonder how it had
gotten into the Valley of Rest, where she never
had seen anything like it. But she did not have
much time for wonder; for the toad, giving her
dress another pull, said to her, "Come to the
The Valley of Rest. 87
brook! Come to the brook!" And then it
began to hop towards the brook just as fast as it
She forgot her promise to the children, and,
just exactly as she had done once before, she
obeyed the toad, and went down to the brook.
And when she got there, she could not imagine
why the toad wanted her to go there, for he was
nowhere to be seen, and the brook looked just as
it always did. But she sat down by it, and watched
the merry water as it rippled along over its pebbly
bed. Then, soothed by the low murmur it made,
she lay down on the grass and fell asleep. And
while she was asleep she had a dream; and this is
what she dreamed:
She saw Aster, his dress torn, dirty, and ragged,
his long curls tangled; tired and sad, and com-
pelled to carry burdens of stone too heavy for
him to lift. And when he wanted to rest, two
figures, with the faces which Eva had seen in the
forest and among the curling mists and vapors at
the foot of the precipice, beat him with rods full
of thorns. And then a huge red-and-black spider
would sting him in the foot, or a great green frog,
88 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
with prominent black eyes, would threaten to
swallow him; and then the boy would cry, and
call for Eva to come and help him.
Then the frog would say:
"Why did you let me tear your coat?"
And the faces would ask:
"Why did you lose your flower?"
And then the spider would say:
"Why did you creep into the rock?"
And to all this Aster would only answer with
the cry, "Eva! Eva! help me!"
Then one of the faces said, angrily:
"We shall punish you here until three things
are done, because through three things you fell
into our power. First. Eva must find your coat.
Second. She must get the piece to mend it with.
Third. She must find you. But you need not call
her, because she cannot hear you; for she is in
the Valley of Rest with the Happy Children, who
are the Dawn Fairies, and she has forgotten you.
And there are many dangers to pass in Shadow-
Land before, she can come to you; and she will
not come, unless she hears you call."
Then they would beat him again; and Aster
The Valley of Rest. 89
would cry, louder than ever, "Eva! Eva! help
And then the dream passed away, and Eva
awoke. And it seemed to her that Aster's voice
mingled with the rippling of the water, and it
cried, piteously, "Eva! Eva! help me !"
And then Eva knew why it was that the children
had begged her not to go near the brook while
they were gone; because its voice would bring
back to her all that she had forgotten. For now,
as she sat by it, she remembered everything that
the leaves of the flower which she had eaten had
made her forget; and she sprang to her feet, de-
termined to follow the course of the brook, and
let it lead her to where Aster was.
She went all through the fair valley, along the
margin of the brook with whose waters Aster's
voice still seemed to mingle. It led her at last to
the high rocks, which, like a steep wall, surrounded
the valley, and where a low cavern, the roof of
which was only a few inches above the surface
of the water, received the brook. Eva could not
enter it, neither could she climb the steep preci-
pice-like wall; and, with Aster's voice still sound-
90 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
ing piteously in her ears, with a heavy heart, after
several fruitless efforts to climb the rocks, she
went back to the palace, determined to wait for
the return of the children; for, although she had
been very happy while with them, and was un-
willing to leave them, she intended to ask them
how she could leave the peaceful Valley of Rest,
and if they would provide her with the means of
continuing her search for Aster.
Had Eva consulted her own wishes, and been
able to carry them out, she would not have waited
one moment, but would have gone at once out
into Shadow-Land, which she now knew lay all
around the valley. She knew, too, that the little
brook running through the valley, and which had
brought her Aster's cry for help, was the same
whose "Follow, follow me!" had led her to the
golden fountain from whose crest she had re-
ceived her little charge. But how to leave the
valley she did not know. She could do nothing
by herself,-she must wait till the return of the
children,--so that she could scarcely be patient till
the hours of darkness came, knowing that during
The Valley of Rest. 91
them, and before the soft, rosy light could dawn
again, that they would be with her.
There was nothing for it, however, but pa-
tience, and at last, after a day which had seemed
at least a year long, darkness covered the valley;
and although Eva had fully intended to keep
awake until the children's return, her eyes, try
and resolve as she might, would not stay open,
and she slept.
i', e f" p
THE MAGIC BOAT.
ORNING came, and Eva awoke, to find
that she was all alone in the palace, and
to wonder at the utter stillness around
her. There was no song of birds to be heard,-
no fall of musical waters,-no merry children's
ringing laughter and sweet voices. To all in-
tents and purposes the palace seemed as deserted
as it had been the day before. And wondering
at all this, Eva rose, and went out of the palace
to look for her companions.
They had returned; but when she saw them
she understood why everything was so still. For,
instead of the merry songs and joyous games and
dances with which they had been accustomed to
begin the day, they were gathered in little groups,
and every face wore a sad and mournful expres-
The Magic Boat. 93
sion. They seemed troubled, and every now and
then one of them would point to the brook, and
then shake her head; and Eva was going to ask
them what could possibly have happened, and
what the matter was, when they saw her; and
then the whole crowd came around her, and be-
fore she could say a word, they exclaimed, with
"Oh, Eva Eva! what have you done? You
forgot your promise; you went to the brook, and
you heard its story?"
Then it came into Eva's mind that she must
leave the children, who seemed so sorry for what
she had done, and she hung her head and said,
"I could not help it."
"It is true, and only what we feared," one of
them said,-the same one who had spoken to Eva
through the door. "We knew how it would be
before we left you. Yoh could not help it, for it
was Fate, and no promise can bar the power, no
wishes change the will, of Fate."
Then Eva began to tell them her story. And
they all listened, and when she told them how the
94 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
green toad had pulled her dress, another of the
children spoke and told Eva that the green toad
was Aster's friend, and would do all it could to
help him. That, just before she came to the
valley, it had been there and told them she was
coming. And then Eva finished her story, and
begged them to let her go.
"We cannot keep you," they said to her,
"even if we wished it. We would like to keep
you with us, but the green toad has commanded
us to help you, so far as lies in our power. But
we cannot save you from the dangers of the way.
THEY, who are more powerful than our Queen,
have forbidden it, and will not allow us to tell you
what these dangers are, or how you can avoid
them or escape them. That you will learn on
the Enchanted River, down which you will have
to go, and we must, if you ask us, furnish you
with the means of reaching it. You cannot
go there unless we help you, and we cannot keep
you here if we would."
"Will I find Aster?" Eva asked.
That will depend upon yourself," one of the
children said, exactly" as if she was telling a story
The Magic Boat. 95
she had heard. "If Aster had obeyed you, as he
should have done, and as he was expected to do,
your journey would have ended here, in this
Valley of Rest, and we, who are the Dawn
Fairies, would have been able to take his flower
from the Night and Shadow Elves; but the loss
of part of his coat gave them power over him, be-
cause Darkness always swallows up Light when-
ever it can; and so, just at the entrance of this
place, on the verge between Shadow and Dawn,
they succeeded in luring him away from you."
Then they told Eva that for a certain time,
which had now expired, Aster's enemies had been
able to prevent her seeking for him. During
that time," they went on, "we were permitted to
receive you; but then since Aster's friends have
been able to speak to you by means of the brook,
though they can do nothing to rescue or to help
him, for you are the only person who can release
him from the power of the Elves of Shadow-
Land; and since you have heard the voice, and
are willing to follow it, we can only, much as we
would like to keep you with us,chelp you, and let
96 Eva's Adventures in Shadow-Land.
"Has she no choice?" another asked. "Could
she not, if she chose, remain with us, instead of
exposing herself to the dangers through which she
"I would rather go," Eva began, "if I may
"You are right," the first one who had spoken
went on. "It is your fate, and," using, as Eva
remembered, words that Aster had spoken long
before, and which seemed to be a proverb among
the elves and fairies, "it will be, because it must
And then Eva heard, above the voices of the
children and mingling with them, the words
which had come to her along the waters of the
brook, but spoken this time more plaintively than
"Eva! Eva! help me I"
And the children heard, for they said:
You will not hear those words after you leave
our valley. For, in the region through which
you must pass, Aster's friends have no power;
you will have to depend wholly upon yourself.
And"--as the waters of the little brook, by whose