1 When Ethan drove into Hale's yard the builder was just getting out of his sleigh.
2 He flung the bearskin into the sleigh, climbed to the seat, and drove up to the house.
3 "Come on," he said almost gaily, opening the door and putting her bag into the sleigh.
4 Mattie followed him out of the door and helped him to lift the trunk into the back of the sleigh.
5 "That trunk of yours is too heavy for the sleigh, and Dan'l Byrne'll be round to take it over to the Flats," she said.
6 "I'll have to hurry up to do it," Ethan mused, as the sleigh dropped down ahead of him over the dip of the school-house hill.
7 It was not till he led out the sorrel and backed him between the shafts of the sleigh that he once more became conscious of what he was doing.
8 At the kitchen door Daniel Byrne sat in his sleigh behind a big-boned grey who pawed the snow and swung his long head restlessly from side to side.
9 A moment later he heard the jingle of departing sleigh bells and discerned a figure advancing alone toward the empty expanse of snow before the church.
10 Ethan drove on in silence till they reached a part of the wood where the pines were more widely spaced, then he drew up and helped Mattie to get out of the sleigh.
11 She gave him a last nod of sympathy while her son chirped to the horse; and Ethan, as she drove off, stood in the middle of the road and stared after the retreating sleigh.
12 The villagers, being afoot, were the first to climb the slope to the main street, while the country neighbours packed themselves more slowly into the sleighs under the shed.
13 There were things he had to say to her before they parted, but he could not say them in that place of summer memories, and he turned and followed her in silence to the sleigh.
14 Ethan's long strides grew more rapid with the accelerated beat of his thoughts, and as he reached the foot of School House Hill he caught sight of Hale's sleigh in the distance.