"I like it not!" said Alessandro. "The shadow follows too fast!"
Indeed it did. Even as he spoke, a fierce wind blew from the north, and tearing off fleeces from the black cloud, sent them in scurrying masses across the sky. In a moment more, snow-flakes began to fall.
"Holy Virgin!" cried Alessandro. Too well he knew what it meant. He urged the horses, running fast beside them. It was of no use. Too much even for Baba and Benito to make any haste, with the heavily loaded wagon.
"There is an old sheep-corral and a hut not over a mile farther, if we could but reach it!" groaned Alessandro. "Majella, you and the child will freeze."
"She is warm on my breast," said Ramona; "but, Alessandro, what ice in this wind! It is like a knife at my back!"
Alessandro uttered another ejaculation of dismay. The snow was fast thickening; already the track was covered. The wind lessened.
"Thank God, that wind no longer cuts as it did," said Ramona, her teeth chattering, clasping the baby closer and closer.
"I would rather it blew than not," said Alessandro; "it will carry the snow before it. A little more of this, and we cannot see, any more than in the night."