"One hundred and fifty years ago, the monster began, this country had become a place of industry. Factories grew on the landscape like weeds" (Ness 99).
Parson and his two girls that he greatly loves
"saw a sour-looking man... deep, deep frown... apothecaries were ancient, dealing in the old ways of medicine, too. Of herbs and barks, of concoctions brewed from berries and leaves... had always been an unpleasant man. He was greedy and charged too much for his cures" (Ness 103 - 104).
The Apothecary wants to obtain the Yew Tree's healing attributes by cutting it down
Many a day the Apothecary went walking to collect the herbs and leaves of the surrounding green... his walks became longer and longer as the factories and roads sprawled out of the town... Where he used to be able to collect paxsfoil and bella rosa before morning tea, it began to take him the entire day" (Ness 104).
Parson's daughters become VERY ill
"The parson had two daughters... who were the light of his life" (Ness 105).
"Now, the Apothecary wanted the yew tree very badly... The yew tree is the most important of all the healing trees... It can cure almost any ailment man suffers from, mixed and treated by the right apothecary... In order to harvest those things from the tree, the Apothecary would have had to cut it down. And this the parson would not allow" (Ness 105 - 106).
"But then one day, the parson's daughters fell sick. First the one, and then the other... coughing of the daughters within the parsonage... Nothing the parson did helped. No prayer, no cure from the modern doctor... Nothing. The daughters wasted away and approached death" (Ness 106).