A rather odd mixture of science fiction and fantasy. But Andree Norton pulls it off with her usual skill. A really scary book.
To escape the circumscribed roles of her sex in the Outer Rings, Kilda o' Rhyn secures a position with a family going to Dylan, a frontier planet and thus less rule-bound. But the breakaway bends to a turn of the screw: one of her two charges, the girl Bartare, is possessed and She is hostile to Kilda, while younger Oomark dreads both his sister and her companion. Rightly, as the misty, monstrous world of the Folk closes in upon them. Eating of its fruit, Oomark sprouts horns and hooves and Kilda, just sipping its water, sees her toes lengthen into roots. But she binds her feet and eats only from her dwindling supplies, guarding her identity until the Betweener Jorth Kosgro, furred former Scout, and the potent notus tree force Bartare to guide them to the world gate - where, renounced by her Lady, she must leave with them. More-than-apparent time has lapsed (over 50 years for Kilda and the children, 180+ for Jorth) and there's another loss - Kilda's, of her initiative and independence, to Jorth (who at one point remarks on the novelty of 'a woman admitting she's wrong'). As the two head off in his reactivated spaceship, a girl could sigh and not with satisfaction -