"The sleigh passed through the little village, with its little houses almost buried in snow. Dusk was coming and the frost was cutting through like a knife. The smoke from the chimneys hung in the air like a painting. The two horses pulling the sleigh, greyish, alike as twins, wrapped in the steam of their bodies. The four passengers were indiscernible. The sleigh looked as though it had only a load of furs. The bells hanging from the necks of the horses clanked irritatingly. Now the sleigh passed the last houses, and as it made a slight turn, skirting a clump of trees, a dark mass, the top of a stone building, came into view. The passengers hugged each other joyfully..."