And as he sang thus without turning his eyes from the Heavens, he suddenly saw to the right of the hillock on which he stood the semblance of a human body. At first he was confused thinking he beheld a vision of the devil, and even started with fear. But, having guarded himself with he Sign of the Cross and banished all fear, he turned his gaze in that direction and in truth saw some form gliding southwards. It was naked, the skin dark as if burned up by the heat of the sun; the hair on its head was white as a fleece, and not long, falling just below its neck.
Zosima was so overjoyed at beholding a human form that he ran after it in pursuit, but the form fled from him. He followed. At length, when he was near enough to be heard, he shouted: “Why do you run from an old man and a sinner? Slave of the True God, wait for me, whoever you are, in God’s Name I tell you, for the love of God for Whose sake you are living in the desert.” “Forgive me for God’s sake, but I cannot turn towards you and show you my face, Abba Zosima. For I am a woman and naked as you see with the uncovered shame of my body. But if you would like to fulfil one wish of a sinful woman, throw me your cloak so that I can cover my body and can turn to you and ask for your Blessing.” Here terror seized Zosima, for he heard that she called him by name. But he realized that she could not have done so without knowing anything of him if she had not had the power of Spiritual insight. He at once did as he was asked. He took off his old, tattered cloak and threw it to her, turning away as he did so.
She picked it up and was able to cover at least a part of her body.