Two children are lost in a blizzard while they are on their way home on Christmas Eve in early 20th-century England. They try to take a shortcut through the heath but fall into a large hole where they are found by a strange woman, Wee Mary Fever, and her red fire-cat. Wee Mary is a reddle-seller, who digs up the deep red clay from the heaths and peddles it to sheep farmers. The children have heard frightening stories about the strange old woman, but they come to trust her, and Wee Mary uses her magic to get the children home. She blows red dust into the night and casts a spell that causes the dust to become a bright red moon. The moon attracts St. Nicholas who comes to Wee Mary's door and agrees to carry the sleeping children home. When they awaken the next morning their parents tell them they dreamed the whole thing, but the red stockings hanging on the mantle tell another story. Lewis's (The Frog Princess, p. 1132, etc.) tale is hauntingly evocative of the mysterious heaths and an age when magic was closer to Earth than it is now.