Book the First - Recalled to Life
3. III. The Night Shadows
Dig--dig--dig--until an impatient movement from one of the two
passengers would admonish him to pull up the window, draw his arm
securely through the leathern strap, and speculate upon the two
slumbering forms, until his mind lost its hold of them, and they
again slid away into the bank and the grave.
"Buried how long?"
"Almost eighteen years."
"You had abandoned all hope of being dug out?"
The words were still in his hearing as just spoken--distinctly in his
hearing as ever spoken words had been in his life--when the weary
passenger started to the consciousness of daylight, and found that
the shadows of the night were gone.
He lowered the window, and looked out at the rising sun. There was a
ridge of ploughed land, with a plough upon it where it had been left
last night when the horses were unyoked; beyond, a quiet coppice-wood,
in which many leaves of burning red and golden yellow still remained
upon the trees. Though the earth was cold and wet, the sky was
clear, and the sun rose bright, placid, and beautiful.
"Eighteen years!" said the passenger, looking at the sun.
"Gracious Creator of day! To be buried alive for eighteen years!"