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children	the house Jim says he rum ; and as he spoke he reeled a little and caught himself with one hand against the wall Are you hurt? cried I Rum he repeated I must get away from here Rum! Rum! I ran to fetch it but I was quite unsteadied by all that had fallen out and I broke one glass and fouled the tap and while I was still getting in my own way I heard a loud fall in the parlour and running in beheld the captain lying full length upon the floor At the same instant my mother alarmed by the cries and fighting came running downstairs to help me Between us we raised his head He was breathing very loud and hard but his eyes were closed and his face a horrible colour Dear deary me cried my mother what a disgrace upon the house! And your poor father sick! In the meantime we had no idea what to do to help the captain nor any other thought but that he had got his death-hurt in the scuffle with the stranger I got the rum to be sure and tried to put it down his throat but his teeth were tightly shut and his jaws as strong as iron It was a happy relief for us when the door opened and Doctor Livesey came in on his visit to my father Oh doctor we cried what shall we do? Where is he wounded? Wounded? A fiddle-stick's end! said the doctor No more wounded than you or I The man has had a stroke as I warned him Now Mrs Hawkins just you run upstairs to your husband and tell him if possible nothing about it For my part I must do my best to save this fellow's trebly worthless life; Jim you get me a basin When I got back with the basin the doctor had already ripped up the captain's sleeve and exposed his great sinewy arm It was tattooed in several places Here's luck A fair wind and Billy Bones his fancy were very neatly and clearly executed on the forearm; and up near the shoulder there was a sketch of a gallows and a man hanging from it--done as I thought with great spirit Prophetic said the doctor touching this picture with his finger And now Master Billy Bones if that be your name we'll have a look at the colour of your blood Jim he said are you afraid of blood? No sir said I Well then said he you hold the basin ; and with that he took his lancet and opened a vein A great deal of blood was taken before the captain opened his eyes and looked mistily about him First he recognized the doctor with an unmistakable frown; then his glance fell upon me and he looked relieved But suddenly his colour changed and he tried to raise himself crying Where's Black Dog? There is no Black Dog here said the doctor except what you have on your own back You have been drinking rum; you have had a stroke precisely as I told you; and I have just very much against my own will dragged you headforemost out of the grave Now Mr Bones-- That's not my name he interrupted Much I care returned the doctor It's the name of a buccaneer of my acquaintance; and I call you by it for the sake of shortness and what I have to say to you is this; one glass of rum won't kill you but if you take one you'll take another and another and I stake my wig if you don't break off short you'll die--do you understand that?--die and go to your own place like the man in the Bible Come now make an effort I'll help you to your bed for once Between us with much trouble we managed to hoist him upstairs and laid him on his bed where his head fell back on the pillow as if he were almost fainting Now mind you said the doctor I clear my conscience--the name of rum for you is death And with that he went off to see my father taking me with him by the arm This is nothing he said as soon as he had closed the door I have drawn blood enough to keep him quiet awhile; he should lie for a week where he is--that is the best thing for him and you; but another stroke would settle him 3 The Black Spot ABOUT noon I stopped at the captain's door with some cooling drinks and medicines He was lying very much as we had left him only a little higher and he seemed both weak and excited Jim he said you're the only one here that's worth anything and you
children	has lived rough and I'll raise Cain Your doctor hisself said one glass wouldn't hurt me I'll give you a golden guinea for a noggin Jim He was growing more and more excited and this alarmed me for my father who was very low that day and needed quiet; besides I was reassured by the doctor's words now quoted to me and rather offended by the offer of a bribe I want none of your money said I but what you owe my father I'll get you one glass and no more When I brought it to him he seized it greedily and drank it out Aye aye said he that's some better sure enough And now matey did that doctor say how long I was to lie here in this old berth? A week at least said I Thunder! he cried A week! I can't do that; they'd have the black spot on me by then The lubbers is going about to get the wind of me this blessed moment; lubbers as couldn't keep what they got and want to nail what is another's Is that seamanly behaviour now I want to know? But I'm a saving soul I never wasted good money of mine nor lost it neither; and I'll trick 'em again I'm not afraid on 'em I'll shake out another reef matey and daddle 'em again As he was thus speaking he had risen from bed with great difficulty holding to my shoulder with a grip that almost made me cry out and moving his legs like so much dead weight His words spirited as they were in meaning contrasted sadly with the weakness of the voice in which they were uttered He paused when he had got into a sitting position on the edge That doctor's done me he murmured My ears is singing Lay me back Before I could do much to help him he had fallen back again to his former place where he lay for a while silent Jim he said at length you saw that seafaring man today? Black Dog? I asked Ah! Black Dog says he HE'S a bad un; but there's worse that put him on Now if I can't get away nohow and they tip me the black spot mind you it's my old sea-chest they're after; you get on a horse--you can can't you? Well then you get on a horse and go to--well yes I will!--to that eternal doctor swab and tell him to pipe all hands--magistrates and sich--and he'll lay 'em aboard at the Admiral Benbow--all old Flint's crew man and boy all on 'em that's left I was first mate I was old Flint's first mate and I'm the on'y one as knows the place He gave it me at Savannah when he lay a-dying like as if I was to now you see But you won't peach unless they get the black spot on me or unless you see that Black Dog again or a seafaring man with one leg Jim--him above all But what is the black spot captain? I asked That's a summons mate I'll tell you if they get that But you keep your weather-eye open Jim and I'll share with you equals upon my honour He wandered a little longer his voice growing weaker; but soon after I had given him his medicine which he took like a child with the remark If ever a seaman wanted drugs it's me he fell at last into a heavy swoon-like sleep in which I left him What I should have done had all gone well I do not know Probably I should have told the whole story to the doctor for I was in mortal fear lest the captain should repent of his confessions and make an end of me But as things fell out my poor father died quite suddenly that evening which put all other matters on one side Our natural distress the visits of the neighbours the arranging of the funeral and all the work of the inn to be carried on in the meanwhile kept me so busy that I had scarcely time to think of the captain far less to be afraid of him He got downstairs next morning to be sure and had his meals as usual though he ate little and had more I am afraid than his usual supply of rum for he helped himself out of the bar scowling and blowing through his nose and no one dared to cross him On the night before the funeral he was as drunk as ever; and it was shocking in that house of mourning to hear him singing away at his ugly old sea-song; but weak as he was we were all in the fear of death for him and the doctor was suddenly taken up with a case many miles away and was never near the house after my father's death I have said the captain was weak and indeed he seemed rather to grow weaker than regain his strength He clambered up and down stairs and went from the parlour to the bar and back again and sometimes put his nose out of doors to smell the sea holding on to the walls as he went for support and breathing hard and fast like a man on a steep mountain He never particularly addressed me and it is my belief he had as good as forgotten his confidences; but his temper was more flighty and allowing for his bodily weakness more violent than ever He had an alarming way now when he was drunk of drawing his cutlass and laying it bare before him on the table But with all that he minded people less and seemed shut up in his own thoughts and rather wandering Once for instance to our extreme wonder he piped up to a different air a king of country love-song that he must have learned in his youth before he had begun to follow the sea So things passed until the day after the funeral and about three o'clock of a bitter foggy frosty afternoon I was standing at the door for a moment full of sad thoughts about my father when I saw someone
children	Now boy he said take me in to the captain Sir said I upon my word I dare not Oh he sneered that's it! Take me in straight or I'll break your arm And he gave it as he spoke a wrench that made me cry out Sir said I it is for yourself I mean The captain is not what he used to be He sits with a drawn cutlass Another gentleman-- Come now march interrupted he; and I never heard a voice so cruel and cold and ugly as that blind man's It cowed me more than the pain and I began to obey him at once walking straight in at the door and towards the parlour where our sick old buccaneer was sitting dazed with rum The blind man clung close to me holding me in one iron fist and leaning almost more of his weight on me than I could carry Lead me straight up to him and when I'm in view cry out 'Here's a friend for you Bill ' If you don't I'll do this and with that he gave me a twitch that I thought would have made me faint Between this and that I was so utterly terrified of the blind beggar that I forgot my terror of the captain and as I opened the parlour door cried out the words he had ordered in a trembling voice The poor captain raised his eyes and at one look the rum went out of him and left him staring sober The expression of his face was not so much of terror as of mortal sickness He made a movement to rise but I do not believe he had enough force left in his body Now Bill sit where you are said the beggar If I can't see I can hear a finger stirring Business is business Hold out your left hand Boy take his left hand by the wrist and bring it near to my right We both obeyed him to the letter and I saw him pass something from the hollow of the hand that held his stick into the palm of the captain's which closed upon it instantly And now that's done said the blind man; and at the words he suddenly left hold of me and with incredible accuracy and nimbleness skipped out of the parlour and into the road where as I still stood motionless I could hear his stick go tap-tap-tapping into the distance It was some time before either I or the captain seemed to gather our senses but at length and about at the same moment I released his wrist which I was still holding and he drew in his hand and looked sharply into the palm Ten o'clock! he cried Six hours We'll do them yet and he sprang to his feet Even as he did so he reeled put his hand to his throat stood swaying for a moment and then with a peculiar sound fell from his whole height face foremost to the floor I ran to him at once calling to my mother But haste was all in vain The captain had been struck dead by thundering apoplexy It is a curious thing to understand for I had certainly never liked the man though of late I had begun to pity him but as soon as I saw that he was dead I burst into a flood of tears It was the second death I had known and the sorrow of the first was still fresh in my heart 4 The Sea-chest I LOST no time of course in telling my mother all that I knew and perhaps should have told her long before and we saw ourselves at once in a difficult and dangerous position Some of the man's money--if he had any--was certainly due to us but it was not likely that our captain's shipmates above all the two specimens seen by me Black Dog and the blind beggar would be inclined to give up their booty in payment of the dead man's debts The captain's order to mount at once and ride for Doctor Livesey would have left my mother alone and unprotected which was not to be thought of Indeed it seemed impossible for either of us to remain much longer in the house; the fall of coals in the kitchen grate the very ticking of the clock filled us with alarms The neighbourhood to our ears seemed haunted by approaching footsteps; and what between the dead body of the captain on the parlour floor and the thought of that detestable blind beggar hovering near at hand and ready to return there were moments when as the saying goes I jumped in my skin for terror Something must speedily be resolved upon and it occurred to us at last to go forth together and seek help in the neighbouring hamlet No sooner said than done Bare-headed as we were we ran out at once in the gathering evening and the frosty fog The hamlet lay not many hundred yards away though out of view on the other side of the next cove; and what greatly encouraged me it was in an opposite direction from that whence the blind man had made his appearance and whither he had presumably returned We were not many minutes on the road though we sometimes stopped to lay hold of each other and hearken But there was no unusual sound--nothing but the low wash of the ripple and the croaking of the inmates of the wood It was already candle-light when we reached the hamlet and I shall never forget how much I was cheered to see the yellow shine in doors and
children	thanks to you big hulking chicken-hearted men We'll have that chest open if we die for it And I'll thank you for that bag Mrs Crossley to bring back our lawful money in Of course I said I would go with my mother and of course they all cried out at our foolhardiness but even then not a man would go along with us All they would do was to give me a loaded pistol lest we were attacked and to promise to have horses ready saddled in case we were pursued on our return while one lad was to ride forward to the doctor's in search of armed assistance My heart was beating finely when we two set forth in the cold night upon this dangerous venture A full moon was beginning to rise and peered redly through the upper edges of the fog and this increased our haste for it was plain before we came forth again that all would be as bright as day and our departure exposed to the eyes of any watchers We slipped along the hedges noiseless and swift nor did we see or hear anything to increase our terrors till to our relief the door of the Admiral Benbow had closed behind us I slipped the bolt at once and we stood and panted for a moment in the dark alone in the house with the dead captain's body Then my mother got a candle in the bar and holding each other's hands we advanced into the parlour He lay as we had left him on his back with his eyes open and one arm stretched out Draw down the blind Jim whispered my mother; they might come and watch outside And now said she when I had done so we have to get the key off THAT; and who's to touch it I should like to know! and she gave a kind of sob as she said the words I went down on my knees at once On the floor close to his hand there was a little round of paper blackened on the one side I could not doubt that this was the BLACK SPOT; and taking it up I found written on the other side in a very good clear hand this short message: You have till ten tonight He had till ten Mother said I; and just as I said it our old clock began striking This sudden noise startled us shockingly; but the news was good for it was only six Now Jim she said that key I felt in his pockets one after another A few small coins a thimble and some thread and big needles a piece of pigtail tobacco bitten away at the end his gully with the crooked handle a pocket compass and a tinder box were all that they contained and I began to despair Perhaps it's round his neck suggested my mother Overcoming a strong repugnance I tore open his shirt at the neck and there sure enough hanging to a bit of tarry string which I cut with his own gully we found the key At this triumph we were filled with hope and hurried upstairs without delay to the little room where he had slept so long and where his box had stood since the day of his arrival It was like any other seaman's chest on the outside the initial B burned on the top of it with a hot iron and the corners somewhat smashed and broken as by long rough usage Give me the key said my mother; and though the lock was very stiff she had turned it and thrown back the lid in a twinkling A strong smell of tobacco and tar rose from the interior but nothing was to be seen on the top except a suit of very good clothes carefully brushed and folded They had never been worn my mother said Under that the miscellany began--a quadrant a tin canikin several sticks of tobacco two brace of very handsome pistols a piece of bar silver an old Spanish watch and some other trinkets of little value and mostly of foreign make a pair of compasses mounted with brass and five or six curious West Indian shells I have often wondered since why he should have carried about these shells with him in his wandering guilty and hunted life In the meantime we had found nothing of any value but the silver and the trinkets and neither of these were in our way Underneath there was an old boat-cloak whitened with sea-salt on many a harbour-bar My mother pulled it up with impatience and there lay before us the last things in the chest a bundle tied up in oilcloth and looking like papers and a canvas bag that gave forth at a touch the jingle of gold I'll show these rogues that I'm an honest woman said my mother I'll have my dues and not a farthing over Hold Mrs Crossley's bag And she began to count over the amount of the captain's score from the sailor's bag into the one that I was holding It was a long difficult business for the coins were of all countries and sizes--doubloons and louis d'ors and guineas and pieces of eight and I know not what besides all shaken together at random The guineas too were about the scarcest and it was with these only that my mother knew how to make her count When we were about half-way through I suddenly put my hand upon her arm for I had heard in the silent frosty air a sound that brought my heart into my mouth--the tap-tapping of the blind man's stick upon the frozen road It drew nearer and nearer while we sat holding our breath Then it struck sharp on the inn door and then we could hear the handle being turned and the bolt rattling as the wretched being tried to enter; and then there was a long time of silence both within and without
children	the empty chest; and the next we had opened the door and were in full retreat We had not started a moment too soon The fog was rapidly dispersing; already the moon shone quite clear on the high ground on either side; and it was only in the exact bottom of the dell and round the tavern door that a thin veil still hung unbroken to conceal the first steps of our escape Far less than half-way to the hamlet very little beyond the bottom of the hill we must come forth into the moonlight Nor was this all for the sound of several footsteps running came already to our ears and as we looked back in their direction a light tossing to and fro and still rapidly advancing showed that one of the newcomers carried a lantern My dear said my mother suddenly take the money and run on I am going to faint This was certainly the end for both of us I thought How I cursed the cowardice of the neighbours; how I blamed my poor mother for her honesty and her greed for her past foolhardiness and present weakness! We were just at the little bridge by good fortune; and I helped her tottering as she was to the edge of the bank where sure enough she gave a sigh and fell on my shoulder I do not know how I found the strength to do it at all and I am afraid it was roughly done but I managed to drag her down the bank and a little way under the arch Farther I could not move her for the bridge was too low to let me do more than crawl below it So there we had to stay--my mother almost entirely exposed and both of us within earshot of the inn 5 The Last of the Blind Man MY curiosity in a sense was stronger than my fear for I could not remain where I was but crept back to the bank again whence sheltering my head behind a bush of broom I might command the road before our door I was scarcely in position ere my enemies began to arrive seven or eight of them running hard their feet beating out of time along the road and the man with the lantern some paces in front Three men ran together hand in hand; and I made out even through the mist that the middle man of this trio was the blind beggar The next moment his voice showed me that I was right Down with the door! he cried Aye aye sir! answered two or three; and a rush was made upon the Admiral Benbow the lantern-bearer following; and then I could see them pause and hear speeches passed in a lower key as if they were surprised to find the door open But the pause was brief for the blind man again issued his commands His voice sounded louder and higher as if he were afire with eagerness and rage In in in! he shouted and cursed them for their delay Four or five of them obeyed at once two remaining on the road with the formidable beggar There was a pause then a cry of surprise and then a voice shouting from the house Bill's dead But the blind man swore at them again for their delay Search him some of you shirking lubbers and the rest of you aloft and get the chest he cried I could hear their feet rattling up our old stairs so that the house must have shook with it Promptly afterwards fresh sounds of astonishment arose; the window of the captain's room was thrown open with a slam and a jingle of broken glass and a man leaned out into the moonlight head and shoulders and addressed the blind beggar on the road below him Pew he cried they've been before us Someone's turned the chest out alow and aloft Is it there? roared Pew The money's there The blind man cursed the money Flint's fist I mean he cried We don't see it here nohow returned the man Here you below there is it on Bill? cried the blind man again At that another fellow probably him who had remained below to search the captain's body came to the door of the inn Bill's been overhauled a'ready said he; nothin' left It's these people of the inn--it's that boy I wish I had put his eyes out! cried the blind man Pew There were no time ago--they had the door bolted when I tried it Scatter lads and find 'em Sure enough they left their glim here said the fellow from the window Scatter and find 'em! Rout the house out! reiterated Pew striking with his stick upon the road
children	stood irresolute on the road You have your hands on thousands you fools and you hang a leg! You'd be as rich as kings if you could find it and you know it's here and you stand there skulking There wasn't one of you dared face Bill and I did it--a blind man! And I'm to lose my chance for you! I'm to be a poor crawling beggar sponging for rum when I might be rolling in a coach! If you had the pluck of a weevil in a biscuit you would catch them still Hang it Pew we've got the doubloons! grumbled one They might have hid the blessed thing said another Take the Georges Pew and don't stand here squalling Squalling was the word for it; Pew's anger rose so high at these objections till at last his passion completely taking the upper hand he struck at them right and left in his blindness and his stick sounded heavily on more than one These in their turn cursed back at the blind miscreant threatened him in horrid terms and tried in vain to catch the stick and wrest it from his grasp This quarrel was the saving of us for while it was still raging another sound came from the top of the hill on the side of the hamlet--the tramp of horses galloping Almost at the same time a pistol-shot flash and report came from the hedge side And that was plainly the last signal of danger for the buccaneers turned at once and ran separating in every direction one seaward along the cove one slant across the hill and so on so that in half a minute not a sign of them remained but Pew Him they had deserted whether in sheer panic or out of revenge for his ill words and blows I know not; but there he remained behind tapping up and down the road in a frenzy and groping and calling for his comrades Finally he took a wrong turn and ran a few steps past me towards the hamlet crying Johnny Black Dog Dirk and other names you won't leave old Pew mates--not old Pew! Just then the noise of horses topped the rise and four or five riders came in sight in the moonlight and swept at full gallop down the slope At this Pew saw his error turned with a scream and ran straight for the ditch into which he rolled But he was on his feet again in a second and made another dash now utterly bewildered right under the nearest of the coming horses The rider tried to save him but in vain Down went Pew with a cry that rang high into the night; and the four hoofs trampled and spurned him and passed by He fell on his side then gently collapsed upon his face and moved no more I leaped to my feet and hailed the riders They were pulling up at any rate horrified at the accident; and I soon saw what they were One tailing out behind the rest was a lad that had gone from the hamlet to Dr Livesey's; the rest were revenue officers whom he had met by the way and with whom he had had the intelligence to return at once Some news of the lugger in Kitt's Hole had found its way to Supervisor Dance and set him forth that night in our direction and to that circumstance my mother and I owed our preservation from death Pew was dead stone dead As for my mother when we had carried her up to the hamlet a little cold water and salts and that soon brought her back again and she was none the worse for her terror though she still continued to deplore the balance of the money In the meantime the supervisor rode on as fast as he could to Kitt's Hole; but his men had to dismount and grope down the dingle leading and sometimes supporting their horses and in continual fear of ambushes; so it was no great matter for surprise that when they got down to the Hole the lugger was already under way though still close in He hailed her A voice replied telling him to keep out of the moonlight or he would get some lead in him and at the same time a bullet whistled close by his arm Soon after the lugger doubled the point and disappeared Mr Dance stood there as he said like a fish out of water and all he could do was to dispatch a man to B---- to warn the cutter And that said he is just about as good as nothing They've got off clean and there's an end Only he added I'm glad I trod on Master Pew's corns for by this time he had heard my story I went back with him to the Admiral Benbow and you cannot imagine a house in such a state of smash; the very clock had been thrown down by these fellows in their furious hunt after my mother and myself; and though nothing had actually been taken away except the captain's money-bag and a little silver from the till I could see at once that we were ruined Mr Dance could make nothing of the scene They got the money you say? Well then Hawkins what in fortune were they after? More money I suppose? No sir; not money I think replied I In fact sir I believe I have the thing in my breast pocket; and to tell you the truth I should like to get it put in safety To be sure boy; quite right said he I'll take it if you like I thought perhaps Dr Livesey-- I began Perfectly right he interrupted very cheerily perfectly right--a gentleman and a magistrate And now I come to think of it I might as well ride round there myself and report to him or squire Master Pew's dead when all's done; not that I regret it but he's dead you see and
children	WE rode hard all the way till we drew up before Dr Livesey's door The house was all dark to the front Mr Dance told me to jump down and knock and Dogger gave me a stirrup to descend by The door was opened almost at once by the maid Is Dr Livesey in? I asked No she said he had come home in the afternoon but had gone up to the hall to dine and pass the evening with the squire So there we go boys said Mr Dance This time as the distance was short I did not mount but ran with Dogger's stirrup-leather to the lodge gates and up the long leafless moonlit avenue to where the white line of the hall buildings looked on either hand on great old gardens Here Mr Dance dismounted and taking me along with him was admitted at a word into the house The servant led us down a matted passage and showed us at the end into a great library all lined with bookcases and busts upon the top of them where the squire and Dr Livesey sat pipe in hand on either side of a bright fire I had never seen the squire so near at hand He was a tall man over six feet high and broad in proportion and he had a bluff rough-and-ready face all roughened and reddened and lined in his long travels His eyebrows were very black and moved readily and this gave him a look of some temper not bad you would say but quick and high Come in Mr Dance says he very stately and condescending Good evening Dance says the doctor with a nod And good evening to you friend Jim What good wind brings you here? The supervisor stood up straight and stiff and told his story like a lesson; and you should have seen how the two gentlemen leaned forward and looked at each other and forgot to smoke in their surprise and interest When they heard how my mother went back to the inn Dr Livesey fairly slapped his thigh and the squire cried Bravo! and broke his long pipe against the grate Long before it was done Mr Trelawney (that you will remember was the squire's name) had got up from his seat and was striding about the room and the doctor as if to hear the better had taken off his powdered wig and sat there looking very strange indeed with his own close-cropped black poll At last Mr Dance finished the story Mr Dance said the squire you are a very noble fellow And as for riding down that black atrocious miscreant I regard it as an act of virtue sir like stamping on a cockroach This lad Hawkins is a trump I perceive Hawkins will you ring that bell? Mr Dance must have some ale And so Jim said the doctor you have the thing that they were after have you? Here it is sir said I and gave him the oilskin packet The doctor looked it all over as if his fingers were itching to open it; but instead of doing that he put it quietly in the pocket of his coat Squire said he when Dance has had his ale he must of course be off on his Majesty's service; but I mean to keep Jim Hawkins here to sleep at my house and with your permission I propose we should have up the cold pie and let him sup As you will Livesey said the squire; Hawkins has earned better than cold pie So a big pigeon pie was brought in and put on a sidetable and I made a hearty supper for I was as hungry as a hawk while Mr Dance was further complimented and at last dismissed And now squire said the doctor And now Livesey said the squire in the same breath One at a time one at a time laughed Dr Livesey You have heard of this Flint I suppose? Heard of him! cried the squire Heard of him you say! He was the bloodthirstiest buccaneer that sailed Blackbeard was a child to Flint The Spaniards were so prodigiously afraid of him that I tell you sir I was sometimes proud he was an Englishman I've seen his top-sails with these eyes off Trinidad and the cowardly son of a rum-puncheon that I sailed with put back--put back sir into Port of Spain Well I've heard of him myself in England said the doctor But the point is had he money? Money! cried the squire Have you heard the story? What were these villains after but money? What do they care for but money? For what would they risk their rascal carcasses but money? That we shall soon know replied the doctor But you are so confoundedly hot-headed and exclamatory that I cannot get a word in What I want to know is this: Supposing that I have here in my pocket
children	same as the tattoo mark Billy Bones his fancy ; then there was Mr W Bones mate No more rum Off Palm Key he got itt and some other snatches mostly single words and unintelligible I could not help wondering who it was that had got itt and what itt was that he got A knife in his back as like as not Not much instruction there said Dr Livesey as he passed on The next ten or twelve pages were filled with a curious series of entries There was a date at one end of the line and at the other a sum of money as in common account-books but instead of explanatory writing only a varying number of crosses between the two On the 12th of June 1745 for instance a sum of seventy pounds had plainly become due to someone and there was nothing but six crosses to explain the cause In a few cases to be sure the name of a place would be added as Offe Caraccas or a mere entry of latitude and longitude as 62o 17' 20 19o 2' 40 The record lasted over nearly twenty years the amount of the separate entries growing larger as time went on and at the end a grand total had been made out after five or six wrong additions and these words appended Bones his pile I can't make head or tail of this said Dr Livesey The thing is as clear as noonday cried the squire This is the black-hearted hound's account-book These crosses stand for the names of ships or towns that they sank or plundered The sums are the scoundrel's share and where he feared an ambiguity you see he added something clearer 'Offe Caraccas ' now; you see here was some unhappy vessel boarded off that coast God help the poor souls that manned her--coral long ago Right! said the doctor See what it is to be a traveller Right! And the amounts increase you see as he rose in rank There was little else in the volume but a few bearings of places noted in the blank leaves towards the end and a table for reducing French English and Spanish moneys to a common value Thrifty man! cried the doctor He wasn't the one to be cheated And now said the squire for the other The paper had been sealed in several places with a thimble by way of seal; the very thimble perhaps that I had found in the captain's pocket The doctor opened the seals with great care and there fell out the map of an island with latitude and longitude soundings names of hills and bays and inlets and every particular that would be needed to bring a ship to a safe anchorage upon its shores It was about nine miles long and five across shaped you might say like a fat dragon standing up and had two fine land-locked harbours and a hill in the centre part marked The Spy-glass There were several additions of a later date but above all three crosses of red ink--two on the north part of the island one in the southwest--and beside this last in the same red ink and in a small neat hand very different from the captain's tottery characters these words: Bulk of treasure here Over on the back the same hand had written this further information: Tall tree Spy-glass shoulder bearing a point to the N of N N E Skeleton Island E S E and by E Ten feet The bar silver is in the north cache; you can find it by the trend of the east hummock ten fathoms south of the black crag with the face on it The arms are easy found in the sand-hill N point of north inlet cape bearing E and a quarter N J F That was all; but brief as it was and to me incomprehensible it filled the squire and Dr Livesey with delight Livesey said the squire you will give up this wretched practice at once Tomorrow I start for Bristol In three weeks' time--three weeks!--two weeks--ten days--we'll have the best ship sir and the choicest crew in England Hawkins shall come as cabin-boy You'll make a famous cabin-boy Hawkins You Livesey are ship's doctor; I am admiral We'll take Redruth Joyce and Hunter We'll have favourable winds a quick passage and not the least difficulty in finding the spot and money to eat to roll in to play duck and drake with ever after Trelawney said the doctor I'll go with you; and I'll go bail for it so will Jim and be a credit to the undertaking There's only one man I'm afraid of And who's that? cried the squire Name the dog sir! You replied the doctor; for you cannot hold your tongue We are not the only men who know of this paper These fellows who attacked the inn tonight--bold desperate blades for sure--and the rest who stayed aboard that lugger and more I dare say not far off are one and all through thick and thin bound that they'll get that money We must none
children	IT was longer than the squire imagined ere we were ready for the sea and none of our first plans--not even Dr Livesey's of keeping me beside him--could be carried out as we intended The doctor had to go to London for a physician to take charge of his practice; the squire was hard at work at Bristol; and I lived on at the hall under the charge of old Redruth the gamekeeper almost a prisoner but full of sea-dreams and the most charming anticipations of strange islands and adventures I brooded by the hour together over the map all the details of which I well remembered Sitting by the fire in the housekeeper's room I approached that island in my fancy from every possible direction; I explored every acre of its surface; I climbed a thousand times to that tall hill they call the Spy-glass and from the top enjoyed the most wonderful and changing prospects Sometimes the isle was thick with savages with whom we fought sometimes full of dangerous animals that hunted us but in all my fancies nothing occurred to me so strange and tragic as our actual adventures So the weeks passed on till one fine day there came a letter addressed to Dr Livesey with this addition To be opened in the case of his absence by Tom Redruth or young Hawkins Obeying this order we found or rather I found--for the gamekeeper was a poor hand at reading anything but print--the following important news: Old Anchor Inn Bristol March 1 17-- Dear Livesey--As I do not know whether you are at the hall or still in London I send this in double to both places The ship is bought and fitted She lies at anchor ready for sea You never imagined a sweeter schooner--a child might sail her--two hundred tons; name HISPANIOLA I got her through my old friend Blandly who has proved himself throughout the most surprising trump The admirable fellow literally slaved in my interest and so I may say did everyone in Bristol as soon as they got wind of the port we sailed for--treasure I mean Redruth said I interrupting the letter Dr Livesey will not like that The squire has been talking after all Well who's a better right? growled the gamekeeper A pretty rum go if squire ain't to talk for Dr Livesey I should think At that I gave up all attempts at commentary and read straight on: Blandly himself found the HISPANIOLA and by the most admirable management got her for the merest trifle There is a class of men in Bristol monstrously prejudiced against Blandly They go the length of declaring that this honest creature would do anything for money that the HISPANIOLA belonged to him and that he sold it me absurdly high--the most transparent calumnies None of them dare however to deny the merits of the ship So far there was not a hitch The workpeople to be sure--riggers and what not--were most annoyingly slow; but time cured that It was the crew that troubled me I wished a round score of men--in case of natives buccaneers or the odious French--and I had the worry of the deuce itself to find so much as half a dozen till the most remarkable stroke of fortune brought me the very man that I required I was standing on the dock when by the merest accident I fell in talk with him I found he was an old sailor kept a public-house knew all the seafaring men in Bristol had lost his health ashore and wanted a good berth as cook to get to sea again He had hobbled down there that morning he said to get a smell of the salt I was monstrously touched--so would you have been--and out of pure pity I engaged him on the spot to be ship's cook Long John Silver he is called and has lost a leg; but that I regarded as a recommendation since he lost it in his country's service under the immortal Hawke He has no pension Livesey Imagine the abominable age we live in! Well sir I thought I had only found a cook but it was a crew I had discovered Between Silver and myself we got together in a few days a company of the toughest old salts imaginable--not pretty to look at but fellows by their faces of the most indomitable spirit I declare we could fight a frigate Long John even got rid of two out of the six or seven I had already engaged He showed me in a moment that they were just the sort of fresh-water
children	treasure Long John Silver unearthed a very competent man for a mate a man named Arrow I have a boatswain who pipes Livesey; so things shall go man-o'-war fashion on board the good ship HISPANIOLA I forgot to tell you that Silver is a man of substance; I know of my own knowledge that he has a banker's account which has never been overdrawn He leaves his wife to manage the inn; and as she is a woman of colour a pair of old bachelors like you and I may be excused for guessing that it is the wife quite as much as the health that sends him back to roving J T P P S --Hawkins may stay one night with his mother J T You can fancy the excitement into which that letter put me I was half beside myself with glee; and if ever I despised a man it was old Tom Redruth who could do nothing but grumble and lament Any of the under-gamekeepers would gladly have changed places with him; but such was not the squire's pleasure and the squire's pleasure was like law among them all Nobody but old Redruth would have dared so much as even to grumble The next morning he and I set out on foot for the Admiral Benbow and there I found my mother in good health and spirits The captain who had so long been a cause of so much discomfort was gone where the wicked cease from troubling The squire had had everything repaired and the public rooms and the sign repainted and had added some furniture--above all a beautiful armchair for mother in the bar He had found her a boy as an apprentice also so that she should not want help while I was gone It was on seeing that boy that I understood for the first time my situation I had thought up to that moment of the adventures before me not at all of the home that I was leaving; and now at sight of this clumsy stranger who was to stay here in my place beside my mother I had my first attack of tears I am afraid I led that boy a dog's life for as he was new to the work I had a hundred opportunities of setting him right and putting him down and I was not slow to profit by them The night passed and the next day after dinner Redruth and I were afoot again and on the road I said good-bye to Mother and the cove where I had lived since I was born and the dear old Admiral Benbow--since he was repainted no longer quite so dear One of my last thoughts was of the captain who had so often strode along the beach with his cocked hat his sabre-cut cheek and his old brass telescope Next moment we had turned the corner and my home was out of sight The mail picked us up about dusk at the Royal George on the heath I was wedged in between Redruth and a stout old gentleman and in spite of the swift motion and the cold night air I must have dozed a great deal from the very first and then slept like a log up hill and down dale through stage after stage for when I was awakened at last it was by a punch in the ribs and I opened my eyes to find that we were standing still before a large building in a city street and that the day had already broken a long time Where are we? I asked Bristol said Tom Get down Mr Trelawney had taken up his residence at an inn far down the docks to superintend the work upon the schooner Thither we had now to walk and our way to my great delight lay along the quays and beside the great multitude of ships of all sizes and rigs and nations In one sailors were singing at their work in another there were men aloft high over my head hanging to threads that seemed no thicker than a spider's Though I had lived by the shore all my life I seemed never to have been near the sea till then The smell of tar and salt was something new I saw the most wonderful figureheads that had all been far over the ocean I saw besides many old sailors with rings in their ears and whiskers curled in ringlets and tarry pigtails and their swaggering clumsy sea-walk; and if I had seen as many kings or archbishops I could not have been more delighted And I was going to sea myself to sea in a schooner with a piping boatswain and pig-tailed singing seamen to sea bound for an unknown island and to seek for buried treasure! While I was still in this delightful dream we came suddenly in front of a large inn and met Squire Trelawney all dressed out like a sea-officer in stout blue cloth coming out of the door with a smile on his face and a capital imitation of a sailor's walk Here you are he cried and the doctor came last night from London Bravo! The ship's company complete! Oh sir cried I when do we sail? Sail! says he We sail tomorrow! 8
children	We are so grateful to you for having killed the Wicked Witch of the East and for setting our people free from bondage Dorothy listened to this speech with wonder What could the little woman possibly mean by calling her a sorceress and saying she had killed the Wicked Witch of the East? Dorothy was an innocent harmless little girl who had been carried by a cyclone many miles from home; and she had never killed anything in all her life But the little woman evidently expected her to answer; so Dorothy said with hesitation You are very kind but there must be some mistake I have not killed anything Your house did anyway replied the little old woman with a laugh and that is the same thing See! she continued pointing to the corner of the house There are her two feet still sticking out from under a block of wood Dorothy looked and gave a little cry of fright There indeed just under the corner of the great beam the house rested on two feet were sticking out shod in silver shoes with pointed toes Oh dear! Oh dear! cried Dorothy clasping her hands together in dismay The house must have fallen on her Whatever shall we do? There is nothing to be done said the little woman calmly But who was she? asked Dorothy She was the Wicked Witch of the East as I said answered the little woman She has held all the Munchkins in bondage for many years making them slave for her night and day Now they are all set free and are grateful to you for the favor Who are the Munchkins? inquired Dorothy They are the people who live in this land of the East where the Wicked Witch ruled Are you a Munchkin? asked Dorothy No but I am their friend although I live in the land of the North When they saw the Witch of the East was dead the Munchkins sent a swift messenger to me and I came at once I am the Witch of the North Oh gracious! cried Dorothy Are you a real witch? Yes indeed answered the little woman But I am a good witch and the people love me I am not as powerful as the Wicked Witch was who ruled here or I should have set the people free myself But I thought all witches were wicked said the girl who was half frightened at facing a real witch Oh no that is a great mistake There were only four witches in all the Land of Oz and two of them those who live in the North and the South are good witches I know this is true for I am one of them myself and cannot be mistaken Those who dwelt in the East and the West were indeed wicked witches; but now that you have killed one of them there is but one Wicked Witch in all the Land of Oz--the one who lives in the West But said Dorothy after a moment's thought Aunt Em has told me that the witches were all dead--years and years ago Who is Aunt Em? inquired the little old woman She is my aunt who lives in Kansas where I came from The Witch of the North seemed to think for a time with her head bowed and her eyes upon the ground Then she looked up and said I do not know where Kansas is for I have never heard that country mentioned before But tell me is it a civilized country? Oh yes replied Dorothy Then that accounts for it In the civilized countries I believe there are no witches left nor wizards nor sorceresses nor magicians But you see the Land of Oz has never been civilized for we are cut off from all the rest of the world Therefore we still have witches and wizards amongst us Who are the wizards? asked Dorothy Oz himself is the Great Wizard answered the Witch sinking her voice to a whisper He is more powerful than all the rest of us together He lives in the City of Emeralds Dorothy was going to ask another question but just then the Munchkins who had been standing silently by gave a loud shout and pointed to the corner of the house where the Wicked Witch had been lying What is it? asked the little old woman and looked and began to laugh The feet of the dead Witch had disappeared entirely and nothing was left but the silver shoes She was so old explained the Witch of the North that she dried up quickly in the sun That is the end of her But the silver shoes are yours and you shall have them to wear She reached down and picked up the shoes and after shaking
children	I am told said the third man that it is the same at the West And that country where the Winkies live is ruled by the Wicked Witch of the West who would make you her slave if you passed her way The North is my home said the old lady and at its edge is the same great desert that surrounds this Land of Oz I'm afraid my dear you will have to live with us Dorothy began to sob at this for she felt lonely among all these strange people Her tears seemed to grieve the kind-hearted Munchkins for they immediately took out their handkerchiefs and began to weep also As for the little old woman she took off her cap and balanced the point on the end of her nose while she counted One two three in a solemn voice At once the cap changed to a slate on which was written in big white chalk marks: LET DOROTHY GO TO THE CITY OF EMERALDS The little old woman took the slate from her nose and having read the words on it asked Is your name Dorothy my dear? Yes answered the child looking up and drying her tears Then you must go to the City of Emeralds Perhaps Oz will help you Where is this city? asked Dorothy It is exactly in the center of the country and is ruled by Oz the Great Wizard I told you of Is he a good man? inquired the girl anxiously He is a good Wizard Whether he is a man or not I cannot tell for I have never seen him How can I get there? asked Dorothy You must walk It is a long journey through a country that is sometimes pleasant and sometimes dark and terrible However I will use all the magic arts I know of to keep you from harm Won't you go with me? pleaded the girl who had begun to look upon the little old woman as her only friend No I cannot do that she replied but I will give you my kiss and no one will dare injure a person who has been kissed by the Witch of the North She came close to Dorothy and kissed her gently on the forehead Where her lips touched the girl they left a round shining mark as Dorothy found out soon after The road to the City of Emeralds is paved with yellow brick said the Witch so you cannot miss it When you get to Oz do not be afraid of him but tell your story and ask him to help you Good-bye my dear The three Munchkins bowed low to her and wished her a pleasant journey after which they walked away through the trees The Witch gave Dorothy a friendly little nod whirled around on her left heel three times and straightway disappeared much to the surprise of little Toto who barked after her loudly enough when she had gone because he had been afraid even to growl while she stood by But Dorothy knowing her to be a witch had expected her to disappear in just that way and was not surprised in the least 3 How Dorothy Saved the Scarecrow When Dorothy was left alone she began to feel hungry So she went to the cupboard and cut herself some bread which she spread with butter She gave some to Toto and taking a pail from the shelf she carried it down to the little brook and filled it with clear sparkling water Toto ran over to the trees and began to bark at the birds sitting there Dorothy went to get him and saw such delicious fruit hanging from the branches that she gathered some of it finding it just what she wanted to help out her breakfast Then she went back to the house and having helped herself and Toto to a good drink of the cool clear water she set about making ready for the journey to the City of Emeralds Dorothy had only one other dress but that happened to be clean and was hanging on a peg beside her bed It was gingham with checks of white and blue; and although the blue was somewhat faded with many washings it was still a pretty frock The girl washed herself carefully dressed herself in the clean gingham and tied her pink sunbonnet on her head She took a little basket and filled it with bread from the cupboard laying a white cloth over the top Then she looked down at her feet and noticed how old and worn her shoes were They surely will never do for a long journey Toto she said And Toto looked up into her face with his little black eyes and wagged
children	to find the one paved with yellow bricks Within a short time she was walking briskly toward the Emerald City her silver shoes tinkling merrily on the hard yellow road-bed The sun shone bright and the birds sang sweetly and Dorothy did not feel nearly so bad as you might think a little girl would who had been suddenly whisked away from her own country and set down in the midst of a strange land She was surprised as she walked along to see how pretty the country was about her There were neat fences at the sides of the road painted a dainty blue color and beyond them were fields of grain and vegetables in abundance Evidently the Munchkins were good farmers and able to raise large crops Once in a while she would pass a house and the people came out to look at her and bow low as she went by; for everyone knew she had been the means of destroying the Wicked Witch and setting them free from bondage The houses of the Munchkins were odd-looking dwellings for each was round with a big dome for a roof All were painted blue for in this country of the East blue was the favorite color Toward evening when Dorothy was tired with her long walk and began to wonder where she should pass the night she came to a house rather larger than the rest On the green lawn before it many men and women were dancing Five little fiddlers played as loudly as possible and the people were laughing and singing while a big table near by was loaded with delicious fruits and nuts pies and cakes and many other good things to eat The people greeted Dorothy kindly and invited her to supper and to pass the night with them; for this was the home of one of the richest Munchkins in the land and his friends were gathered with him to celebrate their freedom from the bondage of the Wicked Witch Dorothy ate a hearty supper and was waited upon by the rich Munchkin himself whose name was Boq Then she sat upon a settee and watched the people dance When Boq saw her silver shoes he said You must be a great sorceress Why? asked the girl Because you wear silver shoes and have killed the Wicked Witch Besides you have white in your frock and only witches and sorceresses wear white My dress is blue and white checked said Dorothy smoothing out the wrinkles in it It is kind of you to wear that said Boq Blue is the color of the Munchkins and white is the witch color So we know you are a friendly witch Dorothy did not know what to say to this for all the people seemed to think her a witch and she knew very well she was only an ordinary little girl who had come by the chance of a cyclone into a strange land When she had tired watching the dancing Boq led her into the house where he gave her a room with a pretty bed in it The sheets were made of blue cloth and Dorothy slept soundly in them till morning with Toto curled up on the blue rug beside her She ate a hearty breakfast and watched a wee Munchkin baby who played with Toto and pulled his tail and crowed and laughed in a way that greatly amused Dorothy Toto was a fine curiosity to all the people for they had never seen a dog before How far is it to the Emerald City? the girl asked I do not know answered Boq gravely for I have never been there It is better for people to keep away from Oz unless they have business with him But it is a long way to the Emerald City and it will take you many days The country here is rich and pleasant but you must pass through rough and dangerous places before you reach the end of your journey This worried Dorothy a little but she knew that only the Great Oz could help her get to Kansas again so she bravely resolved not to turn back She bade her friends good-bye and again started along the road of yellow brick When she had gone several miles she thought she would stop to rest and so climbed to the top of the fence beside the road and sat down There was a great cornfield beyond the fence and not far away she saw a Scarecrow placed high on a pole to keep the birds from the ripe corn Dorothy leaned her chin upon her hand and gazed thoughtfully at the Scarecrow Its head was a small sack stuffed with straw with eyes nose and mouth painted on it to represent a face An old pointed blue hat that had belonged to some Munchkin was perched on his head and the rest of the figure was a blue suit of clothes worn and faded which had also been stuffed with straw On the feet were some old boots with blue tops such as every man wore in this country and the figure was raised above the stalks of corn by means of the pole stuck up its back While Dorothy was looking earnestly into the queer painted face of the Scarecrow she was surprised to see one of the eyes slowly wink at her She thought she must have been mistaken at first
children	take away the pole I shall be greatly obliged to you Dorothy reached up both arms and lifted the figure off the pole for being stuffed with straw it was quite light Thank you very much said the Scarecrow when he had been set down on the ground I feel like a new man Dorothy was puzzled at this for it sounded queer to hear a stuffed man speak and to see him bow and walk along beside her Who are you? asked the Scarecrow when he had stretched himself and yawned And where are you going? My name is Dorothy said the girl and I am going to the Emerald City to ask the Great Oz to send me back to Kansas Where is the Emerald City? he inquired And who is Oz? Why don't you know? she returned in surprise No indeed I don't know anything You see I am stuffed so I have no brains at all he answered sadly Oh said Dorothy I'm awfully sorry for you Do you think he asked if I go to the Emerald City with you that Oz would give me some brains? I cannot tell she returned but you may come with me if you like If Oz will not give you any brains you will be no worse off than you are now That is true said the Scarecrow You see he continued confidentially I don't mind my legs and arms and body being stuffed because I cannot get hurt If anyone treads on my toes or sticks a pin into me it doesn't matter for I can't feel it But I do not want people to call me a fool and if my head stays stuffed with straw instead of with brains as yours is how am I ever to know anything? I understand how you feel said the little girl who was truly sorry for him If you will come with me I'll ask Oz to do all he can for you Thank you he answered gratefully They walked back to the road Dorothy helped him over the fence and they started along the path of yellow brick for the Emerald City Toto did not like this addition to the party at first He smelled around the stuffed man as if he suspected there might be a nest of rats in the straw and he often growled in an unfriendly way at the Scarecrow Don't mind Toto said Dorothy to her new friend He never bites Oh I'm not afraid replied the Scarecrow He can't hurt the straw Do let me carry that basket for you I shall not mind it for I can't get tired I'll tell you a secret he continued as he walked along There is only one thing in the world I am afraid of What is that? asked Dorothy; the Munchkin farmer who made you? No answered the Scarecrow; it's a lighted match 4 The Road Through the Forest After a few hours the road began to be rough and the walking grew so difficult that the Scarecrow often stumbled over the yellow bricks which were here very uneven Sometimes indeed they were broken or missing altogether leaving holes that Toto jumped across and Dorothy walked around As for the Scarecrow having no brains he walked straight ahead and so stepped into the holes and fell at full length on the hard bricks It never hurt him however and Dorothy would pick him up and set him upon his feet again while he joined her in laughing merrily at his own mishap The farms were not nearly so well cared for here as they were farther back There were fewer houses and fewer fruit trees and the farther they went the more dismal and lonesome the country became At noon they sat down by the roadside near a little brook and Dorothy opened her basket and got out some bread She offered a piece to the Scarecrow but he refused I am never hungry he said and it is a lucky thing I am not for my mouth is only painted and if I should cut a hole in it so I could eat the straw I am stuffed with would come out and that would spoil the shape of my head Dorothy saw at once that this was true so she only nodded and went on eating her bread
children	Won't you tell me a story while we are resting? asked the child The Scarecrow looked at her reproachfully and answered: My life has been so short that I really know nothing whatever I was only made day before yesterday What happened in the world before that time is all unknown to me Luckily when the farmer made my head one of the first things he did was to paint my ears so that I heard what was going on There was another Munchkin with him and the first thing I heard was the farmer saying `How do you like those ears?' `They aren't straight ' answered the other `Never mind ' said the farmer `They are ears just the same ' which was true enough `Now I'll make the eyes ' said the farmer So he painted my right eye and as soon as it was finished I found myself looking at him and at everything around me with a great deal of curiosity for this was my first glimpse of the world `That's a rather pretty eye ' remarked the Munchkin who was watching the farmer `Blue paint is just the color for eyes ' `I think I'll make the other a little bigger ' said the farmer And when the second eye was done I could see much better than before Then he made my nose and my mouth But I did not speak because at that time I didn't know what a mouth was for I had the fun of watching them make my body and my arms and legs; and when they fastened on my head at last I felt very proud for I thought I was just as good a man as anyone `This fellow will scare the crows fast enough ' said the farmer `He looks just like a man ' `Why he is a man ' said the other and I quite agreed with him The farmer carried me under his arm to the cornfield and set me up on a tall stick where you found me He and his friend soon after walked away and left me alone I did not like to be deserted this way So I tried to walk after them But my feet would not touch the ground and I was forced to stay on that pole It was a lonely life to lead for I had nothing to think of having been made such a little while before Many crows and other birds flew into the cornfield but as soon as they saw me they flew away again thinking I was a Munchkin; and this pleased me and made me feel that I was quite an important person By and by an old crow flew near me and after looking at me carefully he perched upon my shoulder and said: `I wonder if that farmer thought to fool me in this clumsy manner Any crow of sense could see that you are only stuffed with straw ' Then he hopped down at my feet and ate all the corn he wanted The other birds seeing he was not harmed by me came to eat the corn too so in a short time there was a great flock of them about me I felt sad at this for it showed I was not such a good Scarecrow after all; but the old crow comforted me saying `If you only had brains in your head you would be as good a man as any of them and a better man than some of them Brains are the only things worth having in this world no matter whether one is a crow or a man ' After the crows had gone I thought this over and decided I would try hard to get some brains By good luck you came along and pulled me off the stake and from what you say I am sure the Great Oz will give me brains as soon as we get to the Emerald City I hope so said Dorothy earnestly since you seem anxious to have them Oh yes; I am anxious returned the Scarecrow It is such an uncomfortable feeling to know one is a fool Well said the girl let us go And she handed the basket to the Scarecrow There were no fences at all by the roadside now and the land was rough and untilled Toward evening they came to a great forest where the trees grew so big and close together that their branches met over the road of yellow brick It was almost dark under the trees for the branches shut out the daylight; but the travelers did not stop and went on into the forest If this road goes in it must come out said the Scarecrow and as the Emerald City is at the other end of the road we must go wherever it leads us Anyone would know that said Dorothy Certainly; that is why I know it returned the Scarecrow If it required brains to figure it out I never should have said it After an hour or so the light faded away and they found themselves stumbling along in the darkness Dorothy could not see at all but Toto could for some dogs see very well in the dark; and the Scarecrow declared he could see as well as by day So she
children	5 The Rescue of the Tin Woodman When Dorothy awoke the sun was shining through the trees and Toto had long been out chasing birds around him and squirrels She sat up and looked around her Scarecrow still standing patiently in his corner waiting for her We must go and search for water she said to him Why do you want water? he asked To wash my face clean after the dust of the road and to drink so the dry bread will not stick in my throat It must be inconvenient to be made of flesh said the Scarecrow thoughtfully for you must sleep and eat and drink However you have brains and it is worth a lot of bother to be able to think properly They left the cottage and walked through the trees until they found a little spring of clear water where Dorothy drank and bathed and ate her breakfast She saw there was not much bread left in the basket and the girl was thankful the Scarecrow did not have to eat anything for there was scarcely enough for herself and Toto for the day When she had finished her meal and was about to go back to the road of yellow brick she was startled to hear a deep groan near by What was that? she asked timidly I cannot imagine replied the Scarecrow; but we can go and see Just then another groan reached their ears and the sound seemed to come from behind them They turned and walked through the forest a few steps when Dorothy discovered something shining in a ray of sunshine that fell between the trees She ran to the place and then stopped short with a little cry of surprise One of the big trees had been partly chopped through and standing beside it with an uplifted axe in his hands was a man made entirely of tin His head and arms and legs were jointed upon his body but he stood perfectly motionless as if he could not stir at all Dorothy looked at him in amazement and so did the Scarecrow while Toto barked sharply and made a snap at the tin legs which hurt his teeth Did you groan? asked Dorothy Yes answered the tin man I did I've been groaning for more than a year and no one has ever heard me before or come to help me What can I do for you? she inquired softly for she was moved by the sad voice in which the man spoke Get an oil-can and oil my joints he answered They are rusted so badly that I cannot move them at all; if I am well oiled I shall soon be all right again You will find an oil-can on a shelf in my cottage Dorothy at once ran back to the cottage and found the oil-can and then she returned and asked anxiously Where are your joints? Oil my neck first replied the Tin Woodman So she oiled it and as it was quite badly rusted the Scarecrow took hold of the tin head and moved it gently from side to side until it worked freely and then the man could turn it himself Now oil the joints in my arms he said And Dorothy oiled them and the Scarecrow bent them carefully until they were quite free from rust and as good as new The Tin Woodman gave a sigh of satisfaction and lowered his axe which he leaned against the tree This is a great comfort he said I have been holding that axe in the air ever since I rusted and I'm glad to be able to put it down at last Now if you will oil the joints of my legs I shall be all right once more So they oiled his legs until he could move them freely; and he thanked them again and again for his release for he seemed a very polite creature and very grateful I might have stood there always if you had not come along he said; so you have certainly saved my life How did you happen to be here? We are on our way to the Emerald City to see the Great Oz she answered and we stopped at your cottage to pass the night Why do you wish to see Oz? he asked I want him to send me back to Kansas and the Scarecrow wants him to put a few brains into his head she replied The Tin Woodman appeared to think deeply for a moment Then he said:
children	to a place where the trees and branches grew so thick over the road that the travelers could not pass But the Tin Woodman set to work with his axe and chopped so well that soon he cleared a passage for the entire party Dorothy was thinking so earnestly as they walked along that she did not notice when the Scarecrow stumbled into a hole and rolled over to the side of the road Indeed he was obliged to call to her to help him up again Why didn't you walk around the hole? asked the Tin Woodman I don't know enough replied the Scarecrow cheerfully My head is stuffed with straw you know and that is why I am going to Oz to ask him for some brains Oh I see said the Tin Woodman But after all brains are not the best things in the world Have you any? inquired the Scarecrow No my head is quite empty answered the Woodman But once I had brains and a heart also; so having tried them both I should much rather have a heart And why is that? asked the Scarecrow I will tell you my story and then you will know So while they were walking through the forest the Tin Woodman told the following story: I was born the son of a woodman who chopped down trees in the forest and sold the wood for a living When I grew up I too became a woodchopper and after my father died I took care of my old mother as long as she lived Then I made up my mind that instead of living alone I would marry so that I might not become lonely There was one of the Munchkin girls who was so beautiful that I soon grew to love her with all my heart She on her part promised to marry me as soon as I could earn enough money to build a better house for her; so I set to work harder than ever But the girl lived with an old woman who did not want her to marry anyone for she was so lazy she wished the girl to remain with her and do the cooking and the housework So the old woman went to the Wicked Witch of the East and promised her two sheep and a cow if she would prevent the marriage Thereupon the Wicked Witch enchanted my axe and when I was chopping away at my best one day for I was anxious to get the new house and my wife as soon as possible the axe slipped all at once and cut off my left leg This at first seemed a great misfortune for I knew a one-legged man could not do very well as a wood-chopper So I went to a tinsmith and had him make me a new leg out of tin The leg worked very well once I was used to it But my action angered the Wicked Witch of the East for she had promised the old woman I should not marry the pretty Munchkin girl When I began chopping again my axe slipped and cut off my right leg Again I went to the tinsmith and again he made me a leg out of tin After this the enchanted axe cut off my arms one after the other; but nothing daunted I had them replaced with tin ones The Wicked Witch then made the axe slip and cut off my head and at first I thought that was the end of me But the tinsmith happened to come along and he made me a new head out of tin I thought I had beaten the Wicked Witch then and I worked harder than ever; but I little knew how cruel my enemy could be She thought of a new way to kill my love for the beautiful Munchkin maiden and made my axe slip again so that it cut right through my body splitting me into two halves Once more the tinsmith came to my help and made me a body of tin fastening my tin arms and legs and head to it by means of joints so that I could move around as well as ever But alas! I had now no heart so that I lost all my love for the Munchkin girl and did not care whether I married her or not I suppose she is still living with the old woman waiting for me to come after her My body shone so brightly in the sun that I felt very proud of it and it did not matter now if my axe slipped for it could not cut me There was only one danger--that my joints would rust; but I kept an oil-can in my cottage and took care to oil myself whenever I needed it However there came a day when I forgot to do this and being caught in a rainstorm before I thought of the danger my joints had rusted and I was left to stand in the woods until you came to help me It was a terrible thing to undergo but during the year I stood there I had time to think that the greatest loss I had known was the loss of my heart While I was in love I was the happiest man on earth; but no one can love who has not a heart and so I am resolved to ask Oz to give me one If he does I will go back to the Munchkin maiden and marry her Both Dorothy and the Scarecrow had been greatly interested in the story of the Tin Woodman and now they knew why he was so anxious to get a new heart All the same said the Scarecrow I shall ask for brains instead of a heart; for a fool would not know what to do with a heart if he had one
children	All this time Dorothy and her companions had been walking through the thick woods The road was still paved with yellow brick but these were much covered by dried branches and dead leaves from the trees and the walking was not at all good There were few birds in this part of the forest for birds love the open country where there is plenty of sunshine But now and then there came a deep growl from some wild animal hidden among the trees These sounds made the little girl's heart beat fast for she did not know what made them; but Toto knew and he walked close to Dorothy's side and did not even bark in return How long will it be the child asked of the Tin Woodman before we are out of the forest? I cannot tell was the answer for I have never been to the Emerald City But my father went there once when I was a boy and he said it was a long journey through a dangerous country although nearer to the city where Oz dwells the country is beautiful But I am not afraid so long as I have my oil-can and nothing can hurt the Scarecrow while you bear upon your forehead the mark of the Good Witch's kiss and that will protect you from harm But Toto! said the girl anxiously What will protect him? We must protect him ourselves if he is in danger replied the Tin Woodman Just as he spoke there came from the forest a terrible roar and the next moment a great Lion bounded into the road With one blow of his paw he sent the Scarecrow spinning over and over to the edge of the road and then he struck at the Tin Woodman with his sharp claws But to the Lion's surprise he could make no impression on the tin although the Woodman fell over in the road and lay still Little Toto now that he had an enemy to face ran barking toward the Lion and the great beast had opened his mouth to bite the dog when Dorothy fearing Toto would be killed and heedless of danger rushed forward and slapped the Lion upon his nose as hard as she could while she cried out: Don't you dare to bite Toto! You ought to be ashamed of yourself a big beast like you to bite a poor little dog! I didn't bite him said the Lion as he rubbed his nose with his paw where Dorothy had hit it No but you tried to she retorted You are nothing but a big coward I know it said the Lion hanging his head in shame I've always known it But how can I help it? I don't know I'm sure To think of your striking a stuffed man like the poor Scarecrow! Is he stuffed? asked the Lion in surprise as he watched her pick up the Scarecrow and set him upon his feet while she patted him into shape again Of course he's stuffed replied Dorothy who was still angry That's why he went over so easily remarked the Lion It astonished me to see him whirl around so Is the other one stuffed also? No said Dorothy he's made of tin And she helped the Woodman up again That's why he nearly blunted my claws said the Lion When they scratched against the tin it made a cold shiver run down my back What is that little animal you are so tender of? He is my dog Toto answered Dorothy Is he made of tin or stuffed? asked the Lion Neither He's a--a--a meat dog said the girl Oh! He's a curious animal and seems remarkably small now that I look at him No one would think of biting such a little thing except a coward like me continued the Lion sadly What makes you a coward? asked Dorothy looking at the great beast in wonder for he was as big as a small horse It's a mystery replied the Lion I suppose I was born that way All the other animals in the forest naturally expect me to be brave for the Lion is everywhere thought to be the King of Beasts I learned that if I roared very loudly every living thing was frightened and got out of my way Whenever I've met a man I've been awfully scared; but I just roared at him and he has always run away as fast as he could go If the elephants and the tigers and the bears had ever tried to fight me I should have run myself--I'm such a coward; but just as soon as they hear me roar they all try to get away from me and of course I let them go But that isn't right The King of Beasts shouldn't be a coward said the Scarecrow
children	I am going to the Great Oz to ask him to give me some remarked the Scarecrow for my head is stuffed with straw And I am going to ask him to give me a heart said the Woodman And I am going to ask him to send Toto and me back to Kansas added Dorothy Do you think Oz could give me courage? asked the Cowardly Lion Just as easily as he could give me brains said the Scarecrow Or give me a heart said the Tin Woodman Or send me back to Kansas said Dorothy Then if you don't mind I'll go with you said the Lion for my life is simply unbearable without a bit of courage You will be very welcome answered Dorothy for you will help to keep away the other wild beasts It seems to me they must be more cowardly than you are if they allow you to scare them so easily They really are said the Lion but that doesn't make me any braver and as long as I know myself to be a coward I shall be unhappy So once more the little company set off upon the journey the Lion walking with stately strides at Dorothy's side Toto did not approve this new comrade at first for he could not forget how nearly he had been crushed between the Lion's great jaws But after a time he became more at ease and presently Toto and the Cowardly Lion had grown to be good friends During the rest of that day there was no other adventure to mar the peace of their journey Once indeed the Tin Woodman stepped upon a beetle that was crawling along the road and killed the poor little thing This made the Tin Woodman very unhappy for he was always careful not to hurt any living creature; and as he walked along he wept several tears of sorrow and regret These tears ran slowly down his face and over the hinges of his jaw and there they rusted When Dorothy presently asked him a question the Tin Woodman could not open his mouth for his jaws were tightly rusted together He became greatly frightened at this and made many motions to Dorothy to relieve him but she could not understand The Lion was also puzzled to know what was wrong But the Scarecrow seized the oil-can from Dorothy's basket and oiled the Woodman's jaws so that after a few moments he could talk as well as before This will serve me a lesson said he to look where I step For if I should kill another bug or beetle I should surely cry again and crying rusts my jaws so that I cannot speak Thereafter he walked very carefully with his eyes on the road and when he saw a tiny ant toiling by he would step over it so as not to harm it The Tin Woodman knew very well he had no heart and therefore he took great care never to be cruel or unkind to anything You people with hearts he said have something to guide you and need never do wrong; but I have no heart and so I must be very careful When Oz gives me a heart of course I needn't mind so much 7 The Journey to the Great Oz They were obliged to camp out that night under a large tree in the forest for there were no houses near The tree made a good thick covering to protect them from the dew and the Tin Woodman chopped a great pile of wood with his axe and Dorothy built a splendid fire that warmed her and made her feel less lonely She and Toto ate the last of their bread and now she did not know what they would do for breakfast If you wish said the Lion I will go into the forest and kill a deer for you You can roast it by the fire since your tastes are so peculiar that you prefer cooked food and then you will have a very good breakfast Don't! Please don't begged the Tin Woodman I should certainly weep if you killed a poor deer and then my jaws would rust again But the Lion went away into the forest and found his own supper and no one ever knew what it was for he didn't mention it And the Scarecrow found a tree full of nuts and filled Dorothy's basket with them so that she would not be hungry for a long time She thought this was very kind and thoughtful of the Scarecrow but she laughed heartily at the awkward way in which the poor creature picked up the nuts His padded hands were so clumsy and the nuts were so small that he dropped almost as many as he put in the basket But the Scarecrow did not mind how long it took him to fill the basket for it enabled him to keep away from the fire as he feared a spark might get into his straw and burn him up So he kept a good distance away from the flames and only came near to cover Dorothy with dry leaves when she lay down to sleep These kept her very snug and warm and she slept soundly until morning When it was daylight the girl bathed her face in a little rippling brook
children	measuring the distance carefully in his mind Then we are all right answered the Scarecrow for you can carry us all over on your back one at a time Well I'll try it said the Lion Who will go first? I will declared the Scarecrow for if you found that you could not jump over the gulf Dorothy would be killed or the Tin Woodman badly dented on the rocks below But if I am on your back it will not matter so much for the fall would not hurt me at all I am terribly afraid of falling myself said the Cowardly Lion but I suppose there is nothing to do but try it So get on my back and we will make the attempt The Scarecrow sat upon the Lion's back and the big beast walked to the edge of the gulf and crouched down Why don't you run and jump? asked the Scarecrow Because that isn't the way we Lions do these things he replied Then giving a great spring he shot through the air and landed safely on the other side They were all greatly pleased to see how easily he did it and after the Scarecrow had got down from his back the Lion sprang across the ditch again Dorothy thought she would go next; so she took Toto in her arms and climbed on the Lion's back holding tightly to his mane with one hand The next moment it seemed as if she were flying through the air; and then before she had time to think about it she was safe on the other side The Lion went back a third time and got the Tin Woodman and then they all sat down for a few moments to give the beast a chance to rest for his great leaps had made his breath short and he panted like a big dog that has been running too long They found the forest very thick on this side and it looked dark and gloomy After the Lion had rested they started along the road of yellow brick silently wondering each in his own mind if ever they would come to the end of the woods and reach the bright sunshine again To add to their discomfort they soon heard strange noises in the depths of the forest and the Lion whispered to them that it was in this part of the country that the Kalidahs lived What are the Kalidahs? asked the girl They are monstrous beasts with bodies like bears and heads like tigers replied the Lion and with claws so long and sharp that they could tear me in two as easily as I could kill Toto I'm terribly afraid of the Kalidahs I'm not surprised that you are returned Dorothy They must be dreadful beasts The Lion was about to reply when suddenly they came to another gulf across the road But this one was so broad and deep that the Lion knew at once he could not leap across it So they sat down to consider what they should do and after serious thought the Scarecrow said: Here is a great tree standing close to the ditch If the Tin Woodman can chop it down so that it will fall to the other side we can walk across it easily That is a first-rate idea said the Lion One would almost suspect you had brains in your head instead of straw The Woodman set to work at once and so sharp was his axe that the tree was soon chopped nearly through Then the Lion put his strong front legs against the tree and pushed with all his might and slowly the big tree tipped and fell with a crash across the ditch with its top branches on the other side They had just started to cross this queer bridge when a sharp growl made them all look up and to their horror they saw running toward them two great beasts with bodies like bears and heads like tigers They are the Kalidahs! said the Cowardly Lion beginning to tremble Quick! cried the Scarecrow Let us cross over So Dorothy went first holding Toto in her arms the Tin Woodman followed and the Scarecrow came next The Lion although he was certainly afraid turned to face the Kalidahs and then he gave so loud and terrible a roar that Dorothy screamed and the Scarecrow fell over backward while even the fierce beasts stopped short and looked at him in surprise But seeing they were bigger than the Lion and remembering that there were two of them and only one of him the Kalidahs again rushed forward and the Lion crossed over the tree and turned to see what they would do next Without stopping an instant the fierce beasts also began to cross the tree And the Lion said to Dorothy: We are lost for they will surely tear us to pieces with their sharp claws But stand close behind me and I will fight them as long as I am alive
children	and tossing her head I'm going to have five-o'clock tea 'fore you go There I'm a lady an' a swell one too I'd have you know She ran over to the corner of the slatternly room and set the doll on a bed over which were tossed the clothes in a dirty heap Phronsie following every movement with anxious eyes Now she's my child remember she said turning her sharp black eyes on the small figure huddled up on the floor as long as she stays here Then she hurried about twitching a box out here and there from a cupboard whose broken door hung by one hinge Here's my silver spoons--ain't they beautiful! she cried running up with a few two-tined forks and a bent and battered knife These she placed also the cracked cups with great gusto on the rickety table propped for support against the wall as one of its legs was gone entirely and another on the fair road to departure 'Tain't stylish to have yer table agin the wall she broke out at a five-o'clock tea; I know 'cause I've peeked in the windows up on the avenoo an' I've seen your folks too She nodded over at Phronsie I know what I'll do She tossed her head with its black elfish locks and darted off in triumph dragging up from another corner a big box first unceremoniously dumping out the various articles such as dirty clothes a tin pan or two a skillet an empty bottle--last of all a nightcap which she held aloft Gran's she shouted; it's been lost a mighty long time Now I'm goin' to wear it to my five-o'clock tea It's a picter hat same's that lady had on to your house once--I seen her She threw the old nightcap over her hair tied the ragged strings with an air and soon by dint of pulling and hauling had the table in the very center of the apartment the box securely under its most delicate and unreliable portion There--my! ain't we fine though! She surveyed her work with great delight her hands on her hips Now says I for our ice cream an' cake with white on top an' choc'late She gave a flirt of her ragged gown and darted here and there with her elfish movements; and presently a cold potato shivering in its skin a slice or two of hard moldy bread and some turnips and carrots uncooked were set about the dirty table with empty spools in between Them's the flowers she explained as she put the last-mentioned articles in their places Now it's all ready except the choc'late And waving an old tin coffeepot whose nose was a thing of the past she filled it at the faucet over the wooden sink and put it down with a flourish at one end of the table Now we're ready an' I'm the beautiful lady up to your house--I seen her once when I was peekin' through the fence --she nodded shrewdly her little eyes snapping-- her an' your sister [Illustration: Five O'Clock Tea] Oh I want Polly broke out Phronsie with such a wail as she sat a frozen little heap not daring to stir that the girl screamed out: Well I'm goin' to take you to her when I've given you my five-o'clock tea; that is if you don't cry An' I ain't goin' to be the beautiful lady up at your house; I'll be Mrs somebody else No I'll be a Dukess--the Dukess of Marlbrer--I've seen her in the paper Oh you've got to have the best chair and she dragged up the sole article of furniture of that name minus its back away from the door; then helping Phronsie up from the floor she wiped off the tears on her pinafore no longer white and soon had her installed on it Now you're comp'ny Thereupon she ran and fetched the doll from the bed and put her on a small old barrel from which the articles were dumped out and with a box for her back Clorinda was soon in great state on one side of the feast The Dukess then slipped into her own seat an inverted tub somewhat low to be sure but still allowing the view of the festive cup to be seen She's my child now Will you have some choc'late? --with a winning smile that ran all over her dirty face and wrinkled it up alarmingly Oh no she's my child protested Phronsie the tears beginning again I mean till I get through my five-o'clock tea cried the girl; can't you understand? Then she'll be yours an' I'll take you home Will you have choc'late?--you must Lady--what's your name anyway? she demanded abruptly bringing her black eyes to bear on Phronsie Phronsie could hardly stammer it out for the tears she was choking back Oh my eye what a name! laughed the Dukess in derision Well you can be Lady Funsie--Fornsie--whatever you call it Now will you have some choc'late? 'Taint perlite not to answer I'd rather have some milk said Phronsie faintly if you please Oh 'tain't no trouble said the Dukess airily quirking out her little finger with grace; and poising the tin coffeepot with an elegant air she inverted it over a cracked cup which when generously full of water she passed to her guest Help yourself to th' cakes Lady Fonsie she said graciously an' what beyewtiful weather we are havin'! Phronsie put forth a trembling hand as it seemed to be expected of her and took the cup of water spilling about half of it which ran off the table-edge and down her little brown gown the Dukess greeting this mishap with a shout of laughter checking it suddenly with a start and a dismayed glance in the direction of the broken window It's time fer you to talk some she said You should say 'Yes I think so too '
children	up somethin' you eat me out o' house an' home with brats you bring in ; for she hadn't seen through the dirt on Phronsie's face and clothes what manner of child was present The Dukess twitched off the nightcap and sprang up upsetting the tin coffeepot which rolled away by itself and put herself over by Phronsie covering her from view In passing she had grasped the doll off from the barrel and hidden her in the folds of her tattered gown with a quick sharp thrust 'Tain't nothin' 'f I do have some fun once in a while Gran she grumbled She pinched Phronsie's arm Keep still And while the old woman swayed across the room for she wasn't quite free from the effects of a taste from a bottle under her arm which she couldn't resist trying before she reached home Phronsie and Rag were working their way over toward the door Stop! roared the old woman at them in a fury and she held up the nightcap Involuntarily Rag paused through sheer force of habit and stood paralyzed till her grandmother had come quite close Hey what have we got here? She eyed Phronsie sharply Oh well you ain't acted so badly after all; maybe the pretty little lady has come to see me hey? and she seized Phronsie's small arm Gran cried Rag hoarsely waking up from her unlucky paralysis let her go; only let her go an' I'll--I'll do anythin' you want me to I'll steal an' pick an' fetch and do anything Gran The old woman leered at her and passed her hand to the beads on Phronsie's neck; and in doing so she let the little arm slip that she might use both hands to undo the clasp the better One second of time--but Rag knowing quite well what could be done in it seized Phronsie rushed outside slammed the door and was down over the rickety stairs in a twinkling through the dirty courtyard and alley--which luckily had few spectators and those thought she was carrying a neighbor's child--around a corner darting here and there till presently she set Phronsie down and drew a long breath Oh my eye! she panted but wasn't that a close shave though! II PHRONSIE There now here you are! There was a little click in the girl's throat Phronsie looked up Yes and your child too Clorinda and all her pink loveliness was thrust into her own little mother's arms and the sharp black eyes peered down upon the two I've brung you home and you're on your own grassplot same's you were Still she stood in her tracks I'm sorry I brung you to my house; but you've had a five-o'clock tea and now you're home an' got your child Still she did not stir Well I've got to go Say don't you call no one nor tell no one till I've had time to shake my feet down street She thrust out one flapping shoe then the other gave a scornful laugh and brushed her hand across the sharp eyes Promise now black and blue 'I promise true hope to die if I do' Hurry up! Do you promise? she cried sharply Yes said Phronsie hugging Clorinda tightly All right Now for Gran! She shut her teeth tightly and was off and through the big gateway I've got my child said Phronsie putting up a sleepy hand to pat Clorinda's head but it fell to her side while her yellow hair slipped closer over her flushed cheek She tried to say Clorinda we've got home and my foots are tired swayed held her child tighter to her bosom and over she went in a heap fast asleep before her head touched the soft grass Polly Pepper hurrying home from Alexia's ran in by the gateway and down by a short cut over the grass her feet keeping time to a merry air that had possessed her all the afternoon How fine she cried to herself our garden party will be!--and we've gotten on splendidly with our fancy things this afternoon It will be too perfectly elegant for-- the flying feet came to a standstill that nearly threw her over the sleeping figure the doll tightly pressed to the dirty little pinafore and the flushed cheeks Oh my goodness me! cried Polly down on her knees Why Phronsie just look at your pinafore! But Phronsie had no idea of looking at anything and still slept on Dear me! exclaimed Polly in consternation whatever in the world has she been doing! Well I must get her up to the house Hullo! It was Jasper's voice Polly flew up to her feet and hulloed back He took a short cut with a good many flying leaps across the grass Oh Polly I've been looking for you! Just see there cried Polly pointing tragically to the little heap Well dear me! said Jasper Why Polly --as his eyes fell on the soiled
children	one of the household creeping in and out declared she could not possibly sleep any longer and that they must wake her up This last was from Polly What do you suppose it is Mamsie? she asked for about the fiftieth time hanging over Phronsie's little bed Nothing said Mrs Fisher with firm lips Polly must not be worried by unnecessary alarm and really there seemed to be nothing amiss with Phronsie who was sleeping peacefully with calm little face and even breath It's the best thing for her to sleep till she's rested But what could have tired her so? said Polly with a puzzled face That's just what we can't find out now said her mother diving into her basket for another of Van's stockings Oh here is the mate When she wakes up she'll tell us Well Joanna is going isn't she Mamsie? asked Polly deserting the little bed to fling herself down on the floor at Mrs Fisher's feet to watch the busy fingers Yes she is said Mother Fisher decidedly I'm so very glad of that said Polly with a sigh of relief because you know Mamsie she might go off again and leave Phronsie when she ought to be watching her Say no more about it Polly said her mother setting even firm stitches for Mr King is very angry with Joanna; and you needn't be afraid that Phronsie will ever be left again until we do get just the right person to be with her Now you better go out and forget it all and busy yourself about something I've got to practice said Polly with a yawn and stretching her arms I haven't done a bit this whole afternoon and Monsieur comes tomorrow Best fly at it then said Mrs Fisher smiling at her So Polly with a parting glance at the figure on the little bed went downstairs and into the big drawing-room wishing that Phronsie was there as usual where she dearly loved to stay tucked up in a big damask-covered chair one of her dolls in her arms waiting patiently till the practice hour should be over But when Phronsie at last turned over and said without a bit of warning I want something to eat I do with an extremely injured expression Mother Fisher was so thankful that she had no time to question her if indeed she had considered it wise to do so And Sarah was called and laughed with delight at the summons and ran off to get the tray ready Phronsie watching her with hungry eyes in which the dew of sleep still lingered But old Mr King was not so patient When he saw as he soon did his visits to the side of the little bed being as frequent as Polly's own that Phronsie was really awake and sitting up he could keep still no longer but putting his arms around her fumed out: Oh that careless Joanna! Poor lamb! There there! Grandpapa will take care of his little girl himself after this I'm hungry announced Phronsie looking up into his face Indeed I am Grandpapa dear very hungry Oh to think of it! Yes Pet --soothing her Where is that Sarah? Can't some one get this poor child a bit to eat? he cried irascibly Sarah will hurry just as fast as she can said Mrs Fisher coming up with a dainty white gown over her arm Phronsie must be a good girl and wait patiently Phronsie wriggled her toes under the bedclothes I wish you'd take me Grandpapa dear she said holding up her arms So I will--so I will Pet! cried old Mr King very much delighted; and lifting her up to rest her head on his shoulder he walked up and down the room There there dear! Oh why doesn't that Sarah hurry! --when in walked that individual with a big tray and on it everything that a hungry child could be supposed to desire But Phronsie had no eyes for anything but the glass of milk Oh Grandpapa she piped out at sight of it Sarah's got me some milk and she gave a happy little crow So she has he laughed as gayly Well now we'll sit right down here and have some of these good things and Mrs Fisher drawing up a big easy chair in front of the table where Sarah deposited the tray he sat down with Phronsie on his knee Now child---- Oh Grandpapa may I have the milk? she begged holding out a trembling hand Bless you yes child He put the glass into her hand Take care Phronsie don't drink so fast Honey will choke herself cried Sarah in alarm holding up warning black fingers Oh my! she's done drunk it mos' all up a'ready There there Phronsie! Grandpapa took hold of the glass Phronsie said Mother Fisher and it was her hand that took the glass away from the eager lips You must eat a roll now or a little bit of toast
children	and after the first mouthful she smiled: I like it I do And Mother Fisher smiled too and said I knew you would Phronsie And Grandpapa laughed he was so happy and Sarah kept crying Bress de Lawd! yer maw knew best And pretty soon Mrs Fisher nodded to old Mr King and he said Now for the rest of the milk Phronsie and the glass was put into her happy hand And then more toast and more laughing for Grandpapa by that time told a funny story and everything got so very merry that the gayety brought all the rest of the houseful of children up to see if Phronsie were really awake Why didn't you tell us before? cried Joel in a dudgeon revolving around the table She's been eating ever so long and we thought she was asleep That's the reason she's had a little peace retorted the old gentleman Catch them telling you Joe! said Percy Whitney glad to pitch in with a word Well you didn't know it either said Joel in great satisfaction Say Phronsie where were you all this morning? Ugh! cried Van with a warning dig in his ribs Let me alone cried Joel squaring around on him savagely Look at Phronsie's face said Percy with a superior manner as if no one needed to tell him when to speak Polly was on her knees cuddling up Phronsie's toes and begging to feed her when she felt her give a shiver and try to hide her face on her neck Don't Joey begged Polly But Joel not hearing her and hating to be dictated to by Percy cried out persistently: Say Phron what were you doing all the morning? Phronsie at this gave a loud sob Take me Polly was all she said So Polly sat down on the floor and Phronsie snuggled up closer into her neck and was rocked back and forth to her heart's content while Joel perfectly aghast at the mischief he had done was taken in tow by Mother Fisher to sob out his head in her lap that he didn't mean to he didn't mean to Oh dear me! exclaimed old Mr King in dismay this is a pretty state of things! Polly my child --he leaned over her-- can't you think up something to get us out of it? I'm going to talk about the garden party cried Polly an inspiration seizing her Oh Phronsie now you must sit up; you can't think what plans we have for it But Phronsie burrowed deeper in her nest If you don't sit up Phronsie said Polly quite decidedly I shall have to put you off from my lap and go out of the room Oh no no Polly! cried Phronsie clutching her around the neck Yes I shall Phronsie declared Polly in her most decided fashion so you must sit right up and hear all about it Now Jasper you begin So Phronsie sat up and let Polly wipe her face; and then she folded her hands in her lap while Jasper began: You see that we thought that we'd take the Wistaria arbor Father if you'd let us for our post office May we? Yes yes certainly said the old gentleman who would have been quite willing to promise anything just then Oh that's no end jolly! cried Jasper throwing back his dark hair from his forehead with a quick thrust Now we can do splendidly Polly only think! His eyes shone and Polly screamed out Oh Grandpapa how lovely! and the others joined in not quite knowing what they were so happy about until Joel popped up his head from his mother's lap to hear what all the noise was about over there I'm going to be postmaster he announced wiping the tears off with the back of his hand and plunging across the room No sir-ee! declared Ben seizing his jacket-end don't think it Joe Jasper is going to fill that important office Yes Jasper is shouted Percy and Van together delighted at anything that could keep Joel out Davie stood perfectly still in the midst of the uproar Why couldn't Joey be a letter carrier to help give out the letters? he said at last in the midst of the noise Couldn't he Ben? and he ran to twitch that individual's sleeve Hey--what? Couldn't he be the one to give out some of the letters and help Jasper? asked David anxiously I don't know--yes maybe --as he saw David's face fall You best ask Jasper he's to be the postmaster So David ran over and precipitated himself into the middle of the group with his question; when immediately the rest began to clamor to help Jasper
children	some letters Why we must have a bushel of them Oh Polly Pepper! cried the others a bushel of letters! And no one can have a letter who doesn't write some announced Polly firmly-- the very idea! So we must all work like everything to get ready for the post office III CLEM FORSYTHE Phronsie sat on the stairs halfway down the long flight It was the same staircase on which Jasper had found her with Polly waiting patiently on the lower step when she first came to Grandpapa King's Now she held Clorinda in her arms tightly pressed to her bosom I do wish she said softly that I could see my poor little girl I do Clorinda not replying Phronsie smoothed down the pink gown It wasn't very nice at that little girl's house --and a troubled expression swept over her face-- but the little girl was nice and she hadn't any child Clorinda's countenance expressed no sorrow but stared up at her mother unblinkingly Phronsie bent over and dropped a kiss on the red lips Maybe she'll come again some day if I watch by the big gate My goodness me! Polly running along the upper hall peered over the railing What are you doing Phronsie sitting down in the middle of the stairs? I'm thinking said Phronsie looking up Well I should say! cried Polly running down to sit beside her Oh Pet I've an invite for you She seized Phronsie's hand and cuddled it in both of her own It's perfectly splendid What's an 'invite'? asked Phronsie coming slowly out of her thoughts to peer into Polly's face Oh I forgot Mamsie didn't want me to say that said Polly with a little blush Well it's an invitation Pet and to Miss Mary Taylor's to go with us girls this afternoon to work on our fancy things for the fair Only think of that Phronsie Pepper! And Polly threw her arms around the small figure and hugged her to the imminent danger of both falling down the rest of the flight Oh dear me! exclaimed Polly we almost went over Can I really go Polly? cried Phronsie as soon as she could get her breath when you all take your bags and work on things? She set Clorinda carefully down on the stair above and stood up to look into Polly's face Yes child Take care you'll tumble over backward warned Polly with a restraining hand And oh Phronsie! I'm going to make you a little silk bag and you can take your pin-cushion to work on This was such a height of bliss that it quite overcame Phronsie and she sat down on her stair again to think it over To have a little silk bag to hang on her arm to carry her work in just as Polly and the other girls did when they went to each other's houses with their fancy work was more than she ever imagined was coming to her till she got as big as they were And to put her cushion-pin in it and go to Miss Mary Taylor's with them all sent her into such a dream of delight that she sat quite still her hands in her lap Don't you like it Pet? cried Polly disappointed at her silence Phronsie drew a long breath then stood up and began to hop up and down on her stair Oh Polly she cried clapping her hands I'm going to have a little silk bag I truly am Polly all my own--oh! My goodness me Phronsie! cried Polly seizing her arms you'll roll down and break your neck most likely And I'll take my cushion-pin --Phronsie leaned over and put her face close to Polly's cheek-- and I'll sew on it for the poor children I will and she began to hop up and down again Take care and stop dancing laughed Polly And it shall be a pink bag said Phronsie dreadfully excited; make it a pink bag do Polly Oh I don't know that I can do that said Polly slowly because you know I took my piece of pink ribbon Auntie gave me for that sachet case I'm making for the fair But never mind child --as she saw a sorry little droop to Phronsie's mouth-- I'll find another somewhere and it will be nice even if it isn't pink It will be nice echoed Phronsie confidently as long as Polly said so
children	her on that sofa-pillow and she twitched a square of yellow silk into a tighter tangle How in the world did that spool get in here? she exclaimed in vexation I'll get it out let me begged Phronsie dropping a fascinating bunch of gay ribbons she was sorting in the hope of finding a pink one Oh you can't child cried Polly her impatient fingers making sad work of the snarl There I'll break the old thing there's no other way --as Clem ran over the stairs and into the room Oh I'm so glad to find you! panted Clem Dear me! what _are_ you doing? And not waiting for an answer she plunged on: I stopped at Alexia's--thought you might be there And she's just as mad as can be because I was coming over here for you You see her aunt has something for her to do this morning I'm tickled to death that for once I got ahead of her Whew! I'm so hot! I ran every step of the way She threw herself down on the floor beside the two My what a sight of ribbons Polly Pepper! I'm going to have a silk bag Clem confided Phronsie dropping the little bunch of ribbons in her lap to lean over to look into the tall girl's face and I'm going to take my cushion-pin in it Are you really? said Clem Oh Polly you see I want you to---- Yes I am Phronsie nodded her yellow head Polly is going to make it right now she is Is she? Oh dear! Clem gave a groan Oh Polly I did want you to---- You see I promised her this Polly was guilty of interrupting She's been invited to Miss Mary's this afternoon with us girls and she wants a silk bag to carry her work in too the same as we big girls have don't you Pet? Polly stopped long enough in the final tussle with the snarl to set a kiss on Phronsie's round cheek Yes I do Polly laughed Phronsie with a wriggle of delight and I'm going to carry my cushion-pin in it I am So you see I can't help you on your sofa-pillow Clem said Polly hurriedly feeling dreadfully ashamed to have to say no Oh I don't want any help on it said Clem; I finished that old thing Polly Finished your sofa-pillow Clem! Polly dropped her snarl in her lap Why how could you?--and you hadn't the dog worked except one leg and none of the filling in Oh I don't mean I finished it in that way said Clem carelessly I mean I'm done with it forever I just hate that old dog Polly and so I gave the whole thing to our second girl and she's going to work it for Christmas and send it to her mother Dear me! exclaimed Polly and now you won't give anything to the fair and her mouth drooped sorrowfully Oh yes I will too declared Clem cheerfully; I'll give something ten times better than that old dog sitting up on a cushion And nobody would have bought it when it was done except my mother--I'd made her--so what's the use of finishing it? Anyway I've given it to Bridget; and now I'm going to make the most elegant thing--you can't guess Polly Pepper What is it? cried Polly with sparkling eyes Oh that's telling said Clem in a tantalizing way You must guess Polly said Phronsie with a gentle little twitch on her arm can you find any pink ribbon? Yes yes; I mean no not yet said Polly in a preoccupied way her eyes on Clem's face Oh I can't guess; it might be anything you know Clem But it isn't; I mean it's something declared Clem in great triumph Oh do hurry you're so slow Polly; it's too elegant for anything! Polly leaned her face in her hands and her elbows on her knees Mm mm--oh I know! She brought up suddenly nearly overthrowing Phronsie who had bent anxiously over her Take care Pet I came near bumping your nose It's a workbag A workbag! exclaimed Clem in great scorn Well I guess not Polly Pepper What I'm going to make is ever so much better than an old workbag Guess again At the mention of the workbag Phronsie had gently pulled Polly's arm But Polly was too deep in thought to notice and she wrinkled her brows and bent her head again in her hands What could it possibly be that Clem was to make? Well I think it is a sachet bag then she said at last An old sachet bag when all the girls are making oceans of 'em! I should think you'd be perfectly ashamed Polly Pepper to sit there and guess such things I'm going to make a most beautiful embroidered handkerchief case with little violets all---- Why you can't Clem Forsythe! Polly flew to her feet sending the ribbon box flying and nearly oversetting Phronsie You ought not to do any such thing she ran on passionately a little red spot coming on either cheek
children	yourself and we're all working ourselves most to death over this old fair And I did come to ask you to go down-town with me to buy my materials Mother's given me five dollars to spend just as I like--but I shan't ask you now so there! She gave her head another toss and walked off toward the door Phronsie deserted Polly and ran on unsteady little feet after her Polly isn't mean and stingy she quavered; she couldn't be Clem looked down at her and little uncomfortable thrills ran all over her Well anyway she's mad at me she said with great decision Oh no Polly isn't mad declared Phronsie She clasped her hands and swallowed very hard to keep the tears back but two big drops escaped and rolled down her cheeks When Clem saw those she turned away Well anyway I'm going down-street by myself she said without a backward glance at Polly and off she went And if she thinks I'm going with her or care what she does after this cried Polly magnificently with her head in the air she'll make a mistake Polly Polly! The tears were rolling fast now and Phronsie could scarcely see to stumble back across the room to her side And you don't know anything about it child To think of making a violet handkerchief case and mine is almost done and none of the girls would copy mine! And Jasper drew the flowers on purpose She was going on so fast now that she couldn't stop herself Mamsie wouldn't like it wailed Phronsie clear gone in distress now and hiding her face in Polly's gown Mamsie would say-- began Polly decidedly Then she stopped suddenly Oh what have I said! she cried Oh what can I do! She clasped her hands tightly together She was now in as much distress as Phronsie and seeing this Phronsie came out of her tears at once You might run after her she said Oh Polly do She won't speak to me said Polly with a little shiver and covering her eyes Oh dear dear how could I! Yes she will I do believe said Phronsie putting down a terrible feeling at her throat Not speak to Polly?--such a thing could never be! Do run after her Polly she begged Polly took down her hands and went off with wavering steps to the door I'll get your hat cried Phronsie running to the closet But Polly once having decided to make the attempt at a reconciliation was off her brown braids flying back of her in the wind IV MISS TAYLOR'S WORKING BEE Looking both sides of the road not daring to think what she would say if she really did see Clem Polly sped on But not a glimpse of the tall girl's figure met her eyes and at last she turned in at a gateway and ran up the little path to the door Mrs Forsythe saw her through the window that opened on the piazza Why Polly Pepper she cried what a pity that Clem didn't find you! She went over to your house Oh I know I know panted Polly with scarlet cheeks Don't try to talk said Mrs Forsythe you are all out of breath Come in Polly Oh I can't I mean I would like to see Clem mumbled Polly with an awful dread now that she was on the point of finding her of what she should say It was all she could do to keep from running down the piazza steps and fleeing home as fast as she had come Why Clem isn't at home said Mrs Forsythe in a puzzled way; you know I told you she had gone over to your house She wanted you to go down-town with her to buy some materials to take over to Miss Mary's this afternoon and begin something new for the fair Oh! said Polly in a faint voice and hanging to the piazza railing You see she was all tired out over that sofa-pillow I told her it was quite too ambitious a piece to do and she was so discouraged I gave her some more money and advised her to get something fresh She had almost made up her mind to give up working for the fair altogether Oh dear me! gasped Polly quite overcome Yes Mrs Forsythe leaned comfortably against the door-casing It was such a comfort to tell her worries to Polly Pepper Clem said all the
children	Oh dear dear! --and she hurried across the grass-- supposing Mamsie isn't at home! She was going out for Auntie What _shall_ I do? In her despair she raced over the greensward and plunged into the Wistaria arbor--to stand face to face with Clem! Polly was too far gone in distress to say anything Clem jerked up her head from the table and raised a defiant pair of cheeks wet and miserable Oh dear dear! was all Polly could get out But she stumbled in and put her arms around her neck and down went the two heads together I'm awfully sorry blubbered Clem Oh dear! I forgot my handkerchief Take mine Polly put a wet little wad into her hand Oh Clem if you don't let me go down-town with you and buy that handkerchief case! Let you! cried Clem You won't want to go with me Polly But I'm not going to work a handkerchief case Oh yes you are declared Polly positively If you don't Clem Forsythe! It was mean in me to choose it said Clem beginning to sniffle again now that she had a handkerchief Oh no no! said Polly in alarm Now I know you won't forgive me when you say such things For it was all my fault; I was stingy mean to want to keep it to myself You aren't ever mean Polly Pepper! Clem hugged her so tightly by the neck that the neat little ruffle Mamsie sewed in that very morning was quite crushed When she saw that Clem was in worse distress than ever See here! Why Clem Forsythe! Polly Pepper flew up to her feet so suddenly that Clem started in amazement and stared at her as well as she could with her eyes full of tears Why can't you see? Haven't we been two goosies--geese I mean--not to think of it before! What? asked Clem helplessly Why you might make a violet _glove_ case said Polly in a burst Then she began to dance around the arbor Oh Clem how perfectly lovely! I don't see began Clem dismally and I don't know how to make a glove case Why make it just like my handkerchief case only long flung Polly over her shoulder as she danced away But I don't want to copy yours protested Clem for it really would be mean But this would make a set yours and mine said Polly breathlessly and coming up to shake the downcast shoulders don't you see? Oh you goosie! and I've been another not to think of it before And oh such a set! Why it would sell for a lot of money And I'll ask Jasper to draw you the same kind of bunch of violets on your glove case and we'll go right down-town now I can make Phronsie's bag when I get home Come on! When Clem once had the idea in her mind she got off from the bench and Phronsie watching anxiously from Polly's window for her return saw the two girls hurrying across the lawn their arms around each other and talking busily And it wasn't but a moment or two and she was flying over the grass to meet them Polly had explained that the little ribbon bag was to be made just as soon as the materials for the new glove case were bought Polly had run up for her hat and to get her little purse for she just remembered that her green silk for the violet stems was nearly out and Phronsie had said good-bye and gone back to the house on happy feet to tell Clorinda and watch at the window till Polly should come again And just after luncheon for they must start early in order to have a good long afternoon at Miss Mary's Polly and Phronsie set forth the new little bag hanging from Phronsie's arm Jasper went with them as far as the corner where he turned off to go to Jack Rutherford's for the boys were to meet there to write letters for the post office They had promised to be there bright and early Oh Jasper it was so good of you to draw that dear bunch of violets for Clem said Polly for about the fiftieth time; it was too sweet for anything Too sweet for anything hummed Phronsie all her eyes on her bag dangling as she walked Take care you came near falling on your nose Phronsie Jasper put out a warning hand I think it's so nice there's a pink stripe in it Polly said Phronsie patting her bag affectionately Yes isn't it Pet! cried Polly glad she hadn't snipped up that very ribbon for little sachet bags And the green stripe too is pretty Phronsie It's pretty cooed Phronsie and my cushion-pin is inside Japser she announced
children	I heard there was to be a bee here this afternoon he said looking down at them all with a smile so I thought I'd come I'm coming announced Phronsie breaking away from Polly and holding up her bag; and she began to mount the steps So I perceive said Mr Dyce running down to meet her Well Phronsie I must tell you I came partly to see you And I've got a cushion-pin inside said Phronsie confidingly as she toiled up Have you though? cried Mr Dyce Take care don't go so fast Let some of these girls race ahead of us; we'll take our time How d'ye Polly and Alexia and all the rest of you? But I must hurry said Phronsie with a very pink face as the bevy rushed by for I'm going to work on my cushion-pin So you must Well then here goes! Mr Dyce swung her up to his shoulder and went two steps at a time in through the crowd of girls so that he arrived there first when the door was opened There in the hall stood Miss Mary Taylor as pretty as a pink I heard there was to be a bee here this afternoon and I've brought Phronsie; that's my welcome he announced See I've got a bag announced Phronsie from her perch and holding it forth So the bag was admired and the girls trooped in going up into Miss Mary's pretty room to take off their things And presently the big library with the music-room adjoining was filled with the gay young people and the bustle and chatter began at once I should think you'd be driven wild by them all wanting you at the same minute Mr Dyce having that desire at this identical time naturally felt a bit impatient as Miss Mary went about inspecting the work helping to pick out a stitch here and to set a new one there admiring everyone's special bit of prettiness and tossing a smile and a gay word in every chance moment between Oh no said Miss Mary with a little laugh they're most of them my Sunday-school scholars you know That's all the more reason that you ought not to be bothered with them week days observed Mr Dyce Now why can't you sit down here and amuse me? He pushed up an easy-chair into a cosy-corner then drew up an ottoman on which he sat down Oh look at that Mr Dyce said Clem quite in a flow of spirits as she threaded her needle with a strand of violet silk; he's going to keep Miss Mary off there all to himself What did make him come this afternoon? Well he isn't going to have Miss Mary! cried Alexia Rhys twitching her pink worsted with an impatient hand Horrors! Now I've gone and gotten that into a precious snarl The very idea! She's our Sunday-school teacher Oh Miss Mary! she called suddenly Miss Taylor just sitting down in the easy-chair turned What is it Alexia? --while Mr Dyce frowned At which Alexia laughed over at him Please show me about my work she begged You little tyrant! called Mr Dyce as Miss Mary went over Do I slip one stitch and then knit two? asked Alexia innocently Polly next to her on a cricket opened wide eyes Yes said Miss Mary just the same as you have been knitting all along Alexia Well I couldn't think of anything else to ask said Alexia coolly Then she laid hold of Miss Mary's pretty gray gown Oh don't go back to him she implored Do stay with us girls we're all your Sunday-school class--that is most of us _Please_ stay with us Miss Mary Miss Mary cast an imploring glance over at the gentleman which he seemed to see although apparently he wasn't looking Phronsie you and I will have to move over I think ; for by this time he had her in his lap; and so he bundled her across the room unceremoniously Oh I've lost my needle! cried Phronsie peering out from his arms in great distress Dear me! exclaimed Mr Dyce; so he set her down and dropped to all-fours to peer about for the shining little implement Phronsie getting down on her knees to assist the search Alexia seeing the trouble deserted her knitting and flew out of her chair to help look for it You little tyrant! exclaimed Mr Dyce as she added herself to the group to call Miss Mary over there! I should think it was quite bad enough to have you Sundays Alexia
children	But Miss Mary protesting that the girls needed her finally settled it by getting her chair into the middle of the group which she made into a circle There now we're all comfy together she announced Now Mr Dyce you must read us something Oh tell us a story put in Alexia who didn't relish listening to reading Oh yes a story a story they one and all took it up Even Phronsie laid down her big needle which she was patiently dragging back and forth with a very long piece of red worsted following its trail across the face of her cushion-pin in a way to suit her own design to beg for the story Oh Phronsie! exclaimed Polly for the first time catching sight of this you can't work with such a long thread Let me cut off some of it do Oh no no protested Phronsie edging off in alarm Why it'll get all knotted up said Polly in concern; you better let me take off a little--just a little teenty bit Phronsie No no declared Phronsie decidedly I must hurry and get my cushion-pin done She thinks she'll get it done faster with a great long thread giggled one of the girls over in the corner Mr Dyce turning to fix her with a stare she subsided ducking behind her neighbor's back Phronsie I must buy that cushion-pin at the fair he announced I want such an one very much indeed Phronsie got off from the little cricket where he had placed her and went straight over to him to lay her hand with the cushion-pin in it on his knee Then I will sell it to you she said gravely and the poor children can go into the country Then she went back to her seat and took up her work once more Some of the girls laughed but Alexia frowned furiously at them; and Mr Dyce and Miss Mary apparently seeing no amusement in it they all began to beg for the story again till the clamor bade fair to stop the needles from doing their work I guess you'll have to Miss Mary smiled over at him from the center of the circle while the color deepened on her cheek I want a story told to me first he said coolly leaning back in his chair What is all this bee for and this fair? I know just a hint about that but let me have the whole story from beginning to end Now then some one tell me I am very anxious to hear You tell Polly cried Alexia and Let Polly Pepper tell can't she Miss Mary? begged all the girls every one saying the same thing So Miss Mary said yes and Polly laid down her violet handkerchief case in her lap although she hated to stop working and began: You see Miss Mary said one day in Sunday-school---- Oh Polly not that! said Miss Taylor in dismay Go on Polly and tell every word said Mr Hamilton Dyce I'm to be told the whole story; from the very beginning now mind You said 'One day in Sunday-school ' Now go on Yes said Polly her cheeks like a rose for fear her dear Miss Mary might not like it Miss Mary said we ought to be doing things not always talking about them and learning how to be good; and she said there were so many poor children who were waiting for us to help them And---- Polly you don't need to tell that He wants to know about the fair Miss Taylor broke in suddenly Oh dear! said poor Polly blushing rosier than ever and moving her cricket so that she need not see Miss Mary's face while Mr Dyce protesting that he was not to be cheated out of a single word of the narration made her go back and tell over the last thing she said This was so much worse that Miss Mary decided she would let the story go on at all hazards so she leaned back in her chair resignedly while Polly went on: Well and so we said 'Yes Miss Mary we'd like to' and what could we do for we didn't know how to help poor children And I said I didn't want to broke in Alexia suddenly But you did Alexia! cried Polly whirling around on her cricket to regard her affectionately Oh Mr Dyce she did help --looking over at him anxiously Oh yes I see nodded that gentleman and she's working on some fandango for the fair just as hard as you other girls Oh this horrible old shawl! said Alexia regarding the worsted folds dangling from her needle with anything but favor Well I didn't want it and nobody will buy it I know but the other girls were all going to do things so I had to Well go on Polly said Mr Dyce with a laugh So Polly quite satisfied that he really understood how Alexia was helping along the work for the poor children the same as the others hurried on with the story
children	Then how do you know Cap'n Bill? asked the little girl looking up into his face with big round eyes Cap'n Bill coughed Then he tried to sneeze to gain time Then he took out his red cotton handkerchief and wiped his bald head with it rubbing hard so as to make him think clearer Look Trot; ain't that a brig out there? he inquired pointing to a sail far out in the sea How does anybody know about mermaids if those who have seen them never lived to tell about them? she asked again Know what about 'em Trot? About their green and pink scales and pretty songs and wet hair They don't know I guess But mermaids jes' natcherly has to be like that or they wouldn't be mermaids She thought this over Somebody MUST have lived Cap'n Bill she declared positively Other fairies have been seen by mortals; why not mermaids? P'raps they have Trot p'raps they have he answered musingly I'm tellin' you as it was told to me but I never stopped to inquire into the matter so close before Seems like folks wouldn't know so much about mermaids if they hadn't seen 'em; an' yet accordin' to all accounts the victim is bound to get drownded P'raps suggested Trot softly someone found a fotygraph of one of 'em That might o' been Trot that might o' been answered Cap'n Bill A nice man was Cap'n Bill and Trot knew he always liked to explain everything so she could fully understand it The aged sailor was not a very tall man and some people might have called him chubby or even fat He wore a blue sailor shirt with white anchors worked on the corners of the broad square collar and his blue trousers were very wide at the bottom He always wore one trouser leg over his wooden limb and sometimes it would flutter in the wind like a flag because it was so wide and the wooden leg so slender His rough kersey coat was a pea-jacket and came down to his waistline In the big pockets of his jacket he kept a wonderful jackknife and his pipe and tobacco and many bits of string and matches and keys and lots of other things Whenever Cap'n Bill thrust a chubby hand into one of his pockets Trot watched him with breathless interest for she never knew what he was going to pull out The old sailor's face was brown as a berry He had a fringe of hair around the back of his head and a fringe of whisker around the edge of his face running from ear to ear and underneath his chin His eyes were light blue and kind in expression His nose was big and broad and his few teeth were not strong enough to crack nuts with Trot liked Cap'n Bill and had a great deal of confidence in his wisdom and a great admiration for his ability to make tops and whistles and toys with that marvelous jackknife of his In the village were many boys and girls of her own age but she never had as much fun playing with them as she had wandering by the sea accompanied by the old sailor and listening to his fascinating stories She knew all about the Flying Dutchman and Davy Jones' Locker and Captain Kidd and how to harpoon a whale or dodge an iceberg or lasso a seal Cap'n Bill had been everywhere in the world almost on his many voyages He had been wrecked on desert islands like Robinson Crusoe and been attacked by cannibals and had a host of other exciting adventures So he was a delightful comrade for the little girl and whatever Cap'n Bill knew Trot was sure to know in time How do the mermaids live? she asked Are they in caves or just in the water like fishes or how? Can't say Trot he replied I've asked divers about that but none of 'em ever run acrost a mermaid's nest yet as I've heard of If they're fairies she said their homes must be very pretty Mebbe so Trot but damp They are sure to be damp you know I'd like to see a mermaid Cap'n Bill said the child earnestly What an' git drownded? he exclaimed No and live to tell the tale If they're beautiful and laughing and sweet there can't be much harm in them I'm sure Mermaids is mermaids remarked Cap'n Bill in his most solemn voice It wouldn't do us any good to mix up with 'em Trot May-re! May-re! called a voice from the house Yes Mamma! You an' Cap'n Bill come in to supper
children	morning Let's have a boat ride Cap'n Bill said the child Suits me to a T declared the sailor So they found the winding path that led down the face of the cliff to the narrow beach below and cautiously began the descent Trot never minded the steep path or the loose rocks at all but Cap'n Bill's wooden leg was not so useful on a downgrade as on a level and he had to be careful not to slip and take a tumble But by and by they reached the sands and walked to a spot just beneath the big acacia tree that grew on the bluff Halfway to the top of the cliff hung suspended a little shed-like structure that sheltered Trot's rowboat for it was necessary to pull the boat out of reach of the waves which beat in fury against the rocks at high tide About as high up as Cap'n Bill could reach was an iron ring securely fastened to the cliff and to this ring was tied a rope The old sailor unfastened the knot and began paying out the rope and the rowboat came out of its shed and glided slowly downward to the beach It hung on a pair of davits and was lowered just as a boat is lowered from a ship's side When it reached the sands the sailor unhooked the ropes and pushed the boat to the water's edge It was a pretty little craft light and strong and Cap'n Bill knew how to sail it or row it as Trot might desire Today they decided to row so the girl climbed into the bow and her companion stuck his wooden leg into the water's edge so he wouldn't get his foot wet and pushed off the little boat as he climbed aboard Then he seized the oars and began gently paddling Whither away Commodore Trot? he asked gaily I don't care Cap'n It's just fun enough to be on the water she answered trailing one hand overboard So he rowed around by the North Promontory where the great caves were and much as they were enjoying the ride they soon began to feel the heat of the sun That's Dead Man's Cave 'cause a skellington was found there observed the child as they passed a dark yawning mouth in the cliff And that's Bumble Cave 'cause the bumblebees make nests in the top of it And here's Smuggler's Cave 'cause the smugglers used to hide things in it She knew all the caves well and so did Cap'n Bill Many of them opened just at the water's edge and it was possible to row their boat far into their dusky depths And here's Echo Cave she continued dreamily as they slowly moved along the coast and Giant's Cave and--oh Cap'n Bill! Do you s'pose there were ever any giants in that cave? 'Pears like there must o' been Trot or they wouldn't o' named it that name he replied pausing to wipe his bald head with the red handkerchief while the oars dragged in the water We've never been into that cave Cap'n she remarked looking at the small hole in the cliff--an archway through which the water flowed Let's go in now What for Trot? To see if there's a giant there Hm Aren't you 'fraid? No are you? I just don't b'lieve it's big enough for a giant to get into Your father was in there once remarked Cap'n Bill an' he says it's the biggest cave on the coast but low down It's full o' water an' the water's deep down to the very bottom o' the ocean; but the rock roof's liable to bump your head at high tide It's low tide now returned Trot And how could any giant live in there if the roof is so low down? Why he couldn't mate I reckon they must have called it Giant's Cave 'cause it's so big an' not 'cause any giant man lived there Let's go in said the girl again I'd like to 'splore it All right replied the sailor It'll be cooler in there than out here in the sun We won't go very far for when the tide turns we mightn't get out again He picked up the oars and rowed slowly toward the cave The black archway that marked its entrance seemed hardly big enough to admit the boat at first but as they drew nearer the opening became bigger The sea was very calm here for the headland shielded it from the breeze Look out fer your head Trot! cautioned Cap'n Bill as the boat glided slowly into the rocky arch But it was the sailor who had to duck instead of the little girl Only for a moment though Just beyond the opening the cave was higher and as the boat floated into the dim interior they found themselves on quite an extensive branch of the sea For a time neither of them spoke and only the soft lapping of the water against the sides of the boat was heard A beautiful sight met the eyes of the two adventurers and held them dumb with wonder and delight It was not dark in this vast cave yet the light seemed to come from underneath the water which all around them glowed with an exquisite
children	Trot gave a start and looked around her in wonder Just beside her in the water were little eddies--circles within circles--such as are caused when anything sinks below the surface Did--did you hear that Cap'n Bill? she whispered solemnly Cap'n Bill did not answer He was staring with eyes that fairly bulged out at a place behind Trot's back and he shook a little as if trembling from cold Trot turned half around and then she stared too Rising from the blue water was a fair face around which floated a mass of long blonde hair It was a sweet girlish face with eyes of the same deep blue as the water and red lips whose dainty smile disposed two rows of pearly teeth The cheeks were plump and rosy the brows gracefully penciled while the chin was rounded and had a pretty dimple in it The most beauti-ful-est in all the world murmured Cap'n Bill in a voice of horror an' no one has ever lived to--to tell the tale! There was a peal of merry laughter at this laughter that rippled and echoed throughout the cavern Just at Trot's side appeared a new face even fairer than the other with a wealth of brown hair wreathing the lovely features And the eyes smiled kindly into those of the child Are you a--a mermaid? asked Trot curiously She was not a bit afraid They seemed both gentle and friendly Yes dear was the soft answer We are all mermaids! chimed a laughing chorus and here and there all about the boat appeared pretty faces lying just upon the surface of the water Are you part fishes? asked Trot greatly pleased by this wonderful sight No we are all mermaid replied the one with the brown hair The fishes are partly like us because they live in the sea and must move about And you are partly like us Mayre dear but have awkward stiff legs so you may walk on the land But the mermaids lived before fishes and before mankind so both have borrowed something from us Then you must be fairies if you've lived always remarked Trot nodding wisely We are dear We are the water fairies answered the one with the blonde hair coming nearer and rising till her slender white throat showed plainly We--we're goners Trot! sighed Cap'n Bill with a white woebegone face I guess not Cap'n she answered calmly These pretty mermaids aren't going to hurt us I'm sure No indeed said the first one who had spoken If we were wicked enough to wish to harm you our magic could reach you as easily upon the land as in this cave But we love little girls dearly and wish only to please them and make their lives more happy I believe that! cried Trot earnestly Cap'n Bill groaned Guess why we have appeared to you said another mermaid coming to the side of the boat Why? asked the child We heard you say yesterday you would like to see a mermaid and so we decided to grant your wish That was real nice of you said Trot gratefully Also we heard all the foolish things Cap'n Bill said about us remarked the brown-haired one smilingly and we wanted to prove to him that they were wrong I on'y said what I've heard protested Cap'n Bill Never havin' seen a mermaid afore I couldn't be ackerate an' I never expected to see one an' live to tell the tale Again the cave rang with merry laughter and as it died away Trot said May I see your scales please? And are they green and purple and pink like Cap'n Bill said? They seemed undecided what to say to this and swam a little way off where the beautiful heads formed a group that was delightful to see Perhaps they talked together for the brown-haired mermaid soon came back to the side of the boat and asked Would you like to visit our kingdom and see all the wonders that exist below the sea? I'd like to replied Trot promptly but I couldn't I'd get drowned That you would mate! cried Cap'n Bill Oh no said the mermaid We would make you both like one of ourselves and then you could live within the water as easily as we do
children	out how the mermaids live I don't care how they live myself said Cap'n Bill I jes' want 'em to let ME live There's no danger insisted Trot I do' know 'bout that That's what all the other folks said when they dove after the mermaids an' got drownded Who? asked the girl I don't know who but I've heard tell-- You've heard that no one ever saw a mermaid and lived said Trot To tell the tale he added nodding An' if we dives down like they says we won't live ourselves All the mermaids laughed at this and the brown-haired one said Well if you are afraid don't come You may row your boat out of this cave and never see us again if you like We merely thought it would please little Mayre and were willing to show her the sights of our beautiful home I'd like to see 'em all right said Trot her eyes glistening with pleasure So would I admitted Cap'n Bill if we would live to tell the tale Don't you believe us? asked the mermaid fixing her lovely eyes on those of the old sailor and smiling prettily Are you afraid to trust us to bring you safely back? N-n-no said Cap'n Bill 'tain't that I've got to look after Trot Then you'll have to come with me said Trot decidedly for I'm going to 'cept this inv'tation If you don't care to come Cap'n Bill you go home and tell mother I'm visitin' the mermaids She'd scold me inter shivers! moaned Cap'n Bill with a shudder I guess I'd ruther take my chance down below All right I'm ready Miss Mermaid said Trot What shall I do? Jump in clothes and all? Give me your hand dear answered the mermaid lifting a lovely white arm from the water Trot took the slender hand and found it warm and soft and not a bit fishy My name is Clia continued the mermaid and I am a princess in our deep-sea kingdom Just then Trot gave a flop and flopped right out of the boat into the water Cap'n Bill caught a gleam of pink scales as his little friend went overboard and the next moment there was Trot's face in the water among those of the mermaids She was laughing with glee as she looked up into Cap'n Bill's face and called Come on in Cap'n! It didn't hurt a bit! THE DEPTHS OF THE DEEP BLUE SEA CHAPTER 3 Cap'n Bill stood up in the boat as if undecided what to do Never a sailor man was more bewildered than this old fellow by the strangeness of the adventure he had encountered At first he could hardly believe it was all true and that he was not dreaming; but there was Trot in the water laughing with the mermaids and floating comfortably about and he couldn't leave his dear little companion to make the trip to the depths of the ocean alone Take my hand please Cap'n Bill said Princess Clia reaching her dainty arm toward him; and suddenly the old man took courage and clasped the soft fingers in his own He had to lean over the boat to do this and then there came a queer lightness to his legs and he had a great longing to be in the water So he gave a flop and flopped in beside Trot where he found himself comfortable enough but somewhat frightened Law sakes! he gasped Here's me in the water with my rheumatics! I'll be that stiff termorrer I can't wiggle You're wigglin' all right now observed Trot That's a fine tail you've got Cap'n an' its green scales is jus' beautiful Are they green eh? he asked twisting around to try to see them Green as em'ralds Cap'n How do they feel?
children	on land--even before he got the wooden leg And a curious thing about this present experience was that the water did not cling to him and wet him as it had always done before He still wore his flannel shirt and pea jacket and his sailor cap; but although he was in the water and had been underneath the surface the cloth still seemed dry and warm As he dived down and came up again the drops flashed from his head and the fringe of beard but he never needed to wipe his face or eyes at all Trot too was having queer experiences and enjoying them When she ducked under water she saw plainly everything about her as easily and distinctly as she had ever seen anything above water And by looking over her shoulder she could watch the motion of her new tail all covered with pretty iridescent pink scales which gleamed like jewels She wore her dress the same as before and the water failed to affect it in the least She now noticed that the mermaids were clothed too and their exquisite gowns were the loveliest thing the little girl had ever beheld They seemed made of a material that was like sheeny silk cut low in the neck and with wide flowing sleeves that seldom covered the shapely white arms of her new friends The gowns had trains that floated far behind the mermaids as they swam but were so fleecy and transparent that the sparkle of their scales might be seen reaching back of their waists where the human form ended and the fish part began The sea fairies wore strings of splendid pearls twined around their throats while more pearls were sewn upon their gowns for trimmings They did not dress their beautiful hair at all but let it float around them in clouds The little girl had scarcely time to observe all this when the princess said Now my dear if you are ready we will begin our journey for it is a long way to our palaces All right answered Trot and took the hand extended to her with a trustful smile Will you allow me to guide you Cap'n Bill? asked the blonde mermaid extending her hand to the old sailor Of course ma'am he said taking her fingers rather bashfully My name is Merla she continued and I am cousin to Princess Clia We must all keep together you know and I will hold your hand to prevent your missing the way While she spoke they began to descend through the water and it grew quite dark for a time because the cave shut out the light But presently Trot who was eagerly looking around her began to notice the water lighten and saw they were coming into brighter parts of the sea We have left the cave now said Clia and may swim straight home I s'pose there are no winding roads in the ocean remarked the child swimming swiftly beside her new friend Oh yes indeed At the bottom the way is far from being straight or level replied Clia But we are in mid-water now where nothing will hinder our journey unless-- She seemed to hesitate so Trot asked Unless what? Unless we meet with disagreeable creatures said the Princess The mid-water is not as safe as the very bottom and that is the reason we are holding your hands What good would that do? asked Trot You must remember that we are fairies said Princess Clia For that reason nothing in the ocean can injure us but you two are mortals and therefore not entirely safe at all times unless we protect you Trot was thoughtful for a few moments and looked around her a little anxiously Now and then a dark form would shoot across their pathway or pass them at some distance but none was near enough for the girl to see plainly what it might be Suddenly they swam right into a big school of fishes all yellowtails and of very large size There must have been hundreds of them lying lazily in the water and when they saw the mermaids they merely wriggled to one side and opened a path for the sea fairies to pass through Will they hurt us? asked Trot No indeed laughed the Princess Fishes are stupid creatures mostly and this family is quite harmless How about sharks? asked Cap'n Bill who was swimming gracefully beside them his hand clutched in that of pretty Merla Sharks may indeed be dangerous to you replied Clia so I advise you to keep them at a safe distance They never dare attempt to bite a mermaid and it may be they will think you belong to our band; but it is well to avoid them if possible Don't get careless Cap'n added Trot I surely won't mate he replied You see I didn't use to be 'fraid o' sharks 'cause if they came near I'd stick my wooden leg at 'em But now if they happens to fancy these green scales it's all up with ol' Bill
children	Those ones are bad enough though declared Cap'n Bill If you know any worse ones I don't want a interduction to 'em The monster devilfish inhabit caves in the rugged mountainous regions of the ocean resumed the Princess and they are evil spirits who delight in injuring all who meet them None lives near our palaces so there is little danger of your meeting any while you are our guests I hope we won't said Trot None for me added Cap'n Bill Devils of any sort ought to be give a wide berth an' devilfish is worser ner sea serpents Oh do you know the sea serpents? asked Merla as if surprised Not much I don't answered the sailor but I've heard tell of folks as has seen 'em Did they ever live to tell the tale? asked Trot Sometimes he replied They're jes' ORful creatures mate How easy it is to be mistaken said Princess Clia softly We know the sea serpents very well and we like them You do! exclaimed Trot Yes dear There are only three of them in all the world and not only are they harmless but quite bashful and shy They are kind-hearted too and although not beautiful in appearance they do many kind deeds and are generally beloved Where do they live? asked the child The oldest one who is king of this ocean lives quite near us said Clia His name is Anko How old is he? inquired Cap'n Bill curiously No one knows He was here before the ocean came and he stayed here because he learned to like the water better than the land as a habitation Perhaps King Anko is ten thousand years old perhaps twenty thousand We often lose track of the centuries down here in the sea That's pretty old isn't it? said Trot Older than Cap'n Bill I guess Summat chuckled the sailor man summat older mate but not much P'raps the sea serpent ain't got gray whiskers Oh yes he has responded Merla with a laugh And so have his two brothers Unko and Inko They each have an ocean of their own you know; and once every hundred years they come here to visit their brother Anko So we've seen all three many times Why how old are mermaids then? asked Trot looking around at the beautiful creatures wonderingly We are like all ladies of uncertain age rejoined the Princess with a smile We don't care to tell Older than Cap'n Bill? Yes dear said Clia But we haven't any gray whiskers added Merla merrily and our hearts are ever young Trot was thoughtful It made her feel solemn to be in the company of such old people The band of mermaids seemed to all appearances young and fresh and not a bit as if they'd been soaked in water for hundreds of years The girl began to take more notice of the sea maidens following after her More than a dozen were in the group; all were lovely in appearance and clothed in the same gauzy robes as Merla and the Princess These attendants did not join in the conversation but darted here and there in sportive play and often Trot heard the tinkling chorus of their laughter Whatever doubts might have arisen in the child's mind through the ignorant tales of her sailor friend she now found the mermaids to be light-hearted joyous and gay and from the first she had not been in the least afraid of her new companions How much farther do we have to go? asked Cap'n Bill presently Are you getting tired? Merla inquired No said he but I'm sorter anxious to see what your palaces look like Inside the water ain't as interestin' as the top of it It's fine swimmin' I'll agree an' I like it but there ain't nuthin' special to see that I can make out That is true sir replied the Princess We have purposely led you through the mid-water hoping you would see nothing to alarm you until you get more accustomed to our ocean life Moreover we are able to travel more swiftly here How far do you think we have already come Cap'n?
children	CHAPTER 4 Trot was surprised to find it was not at all dark or gloomy as they descended farther into the deep sea Things were not quite so clear to her eyes as they had been in the bright sunshine above the ocean's surface but every object was distinct nevertheless as if she saw through a pane of green-tainted glass The water was very clear except for this green shading and the little girl had never before felt so light and buoyant as she did now It was no effort at all to dart through the water which seemed to support her on all sides I don't believe I weigh anything at all she said to Cap'n Bill No more do I Trot said he But that's nat'ral seein' as we're under water so far What bothers me most is how we manage to breathe havin' no gills like fishes have Are you sure we haven't any gills? she asked lifting her free hand to feel her throat Sure Ner the mermaids haven't any either declared Cap'n Bill Then said Trot we're breathing by magic The mermaids laughed at this shrewd remark and the Princess said You have guessed correctly my dear Go a little slower now for the palaces are in sight Where? asked Trot eagerly Just before you In that grove of trees? inquired the girl And really it seemed to her that they were approaching a beautiful grove The bottom of the sea was covered with white sand in which grew many varieties of sea shrubs with branches like those of trees Not all of them were green however for the branches and leaves were of a variety of gorgeous colors Some were purple shading down to a light lavender; and there were reds all the way from a delicate rose-pink to vivid shades of scarlet Orange yellow and blue shades were there too mingling with the sea-greens in a most charming manner Altogether Trot found the brilliant coloring somewhat bewildering These sea shrubs which in size were quite as big and tall as the trees on earth were set so close together that their branches entwined; but there were several avenues leading into the groves and at the entrance to each avenue the girl noticed several large fishes with long spikes growing upon their noses Those are swordfishes remarked the Princess as she led the band past one of these avenues Are they dang'rous? asked Trot Not to us was the reply The swordfishes are among our most valued and faithful servants guarding the entrances to the gardens which surround our palaces If any creatures try to enter uninvited these guards fight them and drive them away Their swords are sharp and strong and they are fierce fighters I assure you I've known 'em to attack ships an' stick their swords right through the wood said Cap'n Bill Those belonged to the wandering tribes of swordfishes explained the Princess These who are our servants are too sensible and intelligent to attack ships The band now headed into a broad passage through the gardens as the mermaids called these gorgeous groves and the great swordfishes guarding the entrance made way for them to pass afterward resuming their posts with watchful eyes As they slowly swam along the avenue Trot noticed that some of the bushes seemed to have fruits growing upon them but what these fruits might be neither she nor Cap'n Bill could guess The way wound here and there for some distance till finally they came to a more open space all carpeted with sea flowers of exquisite colorings Although Trot did not know it these flowers resembled the rare orchids of earth in their fanciful shapes and marvelous hues The child did not examine them very closely for across the carpet of flowers loomed the magnificent and extensive palaces of the mermaids These palaces were built of coral; white pink and yellow being used and the colors arranged in graceful designs The front of the main palace which now faced them had circular ends connecting the straight wall not unlike the architecture we are all familiar with; yet there seemed to be no windows to the building although a series of archways served as doors Arriving at one of the central archways the band of sea maidens separated Princess Clia and Merla leading Trot and Cap'n Bill into the palace while the other mermaids swam swiftly away to their own quarters
children	understand there is no natural way to make glass under water No indeed said Cap'n Bill And then he asked Does your queen live here? Yes She is waiting now in her throne room to welcome you Shall we go in? I'd just as soon replied Trot rather timidly but she boldly followed the princess who glided through another arch into another small room where several mermaids were reclining upon couches of coral They were beautifully dressed and wore many sparkling jewels Her Majesty is awaiting the strangers Princess Clia announced one of these You are asked to enter at once Come then said Clia and once more taking Trot's hand she led the girl through still another arch while Merla followed just behind them escorting Cap'n Bill They now entered an apartment so gorgeous that the child fairly gasped with astonishment The queen's throne room was indeed the grandest and most beautiful chamber in all the ocean palaces Its coral walls were thickly inlaid with mother-of-pearl exquisitely shaded and made into borders and floral decorations In the corners were cabinets upon the shelves of which many curious shells were arranged all beautifully polished The floor glittered with gems arranged in patterns of flowers like a brilliant carpet Near the center of the room was a raised platform of mother-of-pearl upon which stood a couch thickly studded with diamonds rubies emeralds and pearls Here reclined Queen Aquareine a being so lovely that Trot gazed upon her spellbound and Cap'n Bill took off his sailor cap and held it in his hands All about the room were grouped other mother-of-pearl couches not raised like that of the queen and upon each of these reclined a pretty mermaid They could not sit down as we do Trot readily understood because of their tails; but they rested very gracefully upon the couches with their trailing gauzy robes arranged in fleecy folds When Clia and Merla escorted the strangers down the length of the great room toward the royal throne they met with pleasant looks and smiles on every side for the sea maidens were too polite to indulge in curious stares They paused just before the throne and the queen raised her head upon one elbow to observe them Welcome Mayre she said and welcome Cap'n Bill I trust you are pleased with your glimpse of the life beneath the surface of our sea I am answered Trot looking admiringly at the beautiful face of the queen It's all mighty cur'ous an' strange-like said the sailor slowly I'd no idee you mermaids were like this at all! Allow me to explain that it was to correct your wrong ideas about us that led me to invite you to visit us replied the Queen We usually pay little heed to the earth people for we are content in our own dominions; but of course we know all that goes on upon your earth So when Princess Clia chanced to overhear your absurd statements concerning us we were greatly amused and decided to let you see with your own eyes just what we are like I'm glad you did answered Cap'n Bill dropping his eyes in some confusion as he remembered his former description of the mermaids Now that you are here continued the Queen in a cordial friendly tone you may as well remain with us a few days and see the wonderful sights of our ocean I'm much obliged to you ma'am said Trot and I'd like to stay ever so much but mother worries jus' dreadfully if we don't get home in time I'll arrange all that said Aquareine with a smile How? asked the girl I will make your mother forget the passage of time so she will not realize how long you are away Then she cannot worry Can you do that? inquired Trot Very easily I will send your mother into a deep sleep that will last until you are ready to return home Just at present she is seated in her chair by the front window engaged in knitting The queen paused to raise an arm and wave it slowly to and fro Then she added Now your good mother is asleep little Mayre and instead of worries I promise her pleasant dreams Won't someone rob the house while she's asleep? asked the child anxiously No dear My charm will protect the house from any intrusion That's fine! exclaimed Trot in delight It's jes' won-erful! said Cap'n Bill I wish I knew it was so Trot's mother has a awful sharp tongue when she's worried
children	being in the ocean with water all around us That is because no water really touches you explained the Queen Your bodies have been made just like those of the mermaids in order that you may fully enjoy your visit to us One of our peculiar qualities is that water is never permitted to quite touch our bodies or our gowns Always there remains a very small space hardly a hair's breadth between us and the water which is the reason we are always warm and dry I see said Trot That's why you don't get soggy or withered Exactly laughed the Queen and the other mermaids joined in her merriment I s'pose that's how we can breathe without gills remarked Cap'n Bill thoughtfully Yes The air space is constantly replenished from the water which contains air and this enables us to breathe as freely as you do upon the earth But we have fins said Trot looking at the fin that stood upright on Cap'n Bill's back Yes They allow us to guide ourselves as we swim and so are very useful replied the Queen They make us more finished said Cap'n Bill with a chuckle Then suddenly becoming grave he added How about my rheumatics ma'am? Ain't I likely to get stiffened up with all this dampness? No indeed Aquareine answered There is no such thing as rheumatism in all our dominions I promise no evil result shall follow this visit to us so please be as happy and contented as possible THE SEA-SERPENT CHAPTER 5 Just then Trot happened to look up at the glass roof and saw a startling sight A big head with a face surrounded by stubby gray whiskers was poised just over them and the head was connected with a long curved body that looked much like a sewer pipe Oh there is King Anko said the Queen following the child's gaze Open a door and let him in Clia for I suppose our old friend is anxious to see the earth people Won't he hurt us? asked the little girl with a shiver of fear Who Anko? Oh no my dear! We are very fond of the sea serpent who is king of this ocean although he does not rule the mermaids Old Anko is a very agreeable fellow as you will soon discover Can he talk? asked Trot Yes indeed And can we understand what he says? Perfectly replied the Queen I have given you power while you remain here to understand the language of every inhabitant of the sea That's nice said Trot gratefully The Princess Clia swam slowly to one of the walls of the throne room where at a wave of her hand a round hole appeared in the coral The sea serpent at once observed this opening and the head left the roof of glass only to reappear presently at the round hole Through this he slowly crawled until his head was just beneath the throne of Queen Aquareine who said to him: Good morning your Majesty I hope you are quite well? Quite well thank your Majesty answered Anko; and then he turned to the strangers I suppose these are the earth folks you were expecting? Yes returned the Queen The girl is named Mayre and the man Cap'n Bill While the sea serpent looked at the visitors they ventured to look at him He certainly was a queer creature yet Trot decided he was not at all frightful His head was round as a ball but his ears were sharp-pointed and had tassels at the ends of them His nose was flat and his mouth very wide indeed but his eyes were blue and gentle in expression The white stubby hairs that surrounded his face were not thick like a beard but scattered and scraggly From
children	Oh I'm very well thank you answered Anko I never remember to have had a pain but three times in my life The last time was when Julius Sneezer was on earth You mean Julius Caesar said Trot correcting him No I mean Julius Sneezer insisted the Sea Serpent That was his real name--Sneezer They called him Caesar sometimes just because he took everything he could lay hands on I ought to know because I saw him when he was alive Did you see him when he was alive Cap'n Bill? I reckon not admitted the sailor That time I had a toothache continued Anko but I got a lobster to pull the tooth with his claw so the pain was soon over Did it hurt to pull it? asked Trot Hurt! exclaimed the Sea Serpent groaning at the recollection My dear those creatures have been called lobsters ever since! The second pain I had way back in the time of Nevercouldnever Oh I s'pose you mean Nebuchadnezzar said Trot Do you call him that now? asked the Sea Serpent as if surprised He used to be called Nevercouldnever when he was alive but this new way of spelling seems to get everything mixed up Nebuchadnezzar doesn't mean anything at all it seems to me It means he ate grass said the child Oh no he didn't declared the Sea Serpent He was the first to discover that lettuce was good to eat and he became very fond of it The people may have called it grass but they were wrong I ought to know because I was alive when Nevercouldnever lived Were you alive then? No said Trot The pain I had then remarked Anko was caused by a kink in my tail about three hundred feet from the end There was an old octopus who did not like me and so he tied a knot in my tail when I wasn't looking What did you do? asked Cap'n Bill Well first I transformed the octopus into a jellyfish and then I waited for the tide to turn When my tail was untied the pain stopped I--I don't understand that said Trot somewhat bewildered Thank you my dear replied the Sea Serpent in a grateful voice People who are always understood are very common You are sure to respect those you can't understand for you feel that perhaps they know more than you do About how long do you happen to be? inquired Cap'n Bill When last measured I was seven thousand four hundred and eighty-two feet five inches and a quarter I'm not sure about the quarter but the rest is probably correct Adam measured me when Cain was a baby Where's the rest of you then? asked Trot Safe at home I hope and coiled up in my parlor answered the Sea Serpent When I go out I usually take along only what is needed It saves a lot of bother and I can always find my way back in the darkest night by just coiling up the part that has been away Do you like to be a sea serpent? inquired the child Yes for I'm King of my Ocean and there is no other sea serpent to imagine he is just as good as I am I have two brothers who live in other oceans but one is seven inches shorter than I am and the other several feet shorter It's curious to talk about feet when we haven't any feet isn't it? Seems so acknowledged Trot I feel I have much to be proud of continued Anko in a dreamy tone My great age my undisputed sway and my exceptional length I don't b'lieve I'd care to live so long remarked Cap'n Bill thoughtfully So long as seven thousand four hundred and eighty-two feet five inches and a quarter? asked the Sea Serpent No I mean so many years replied the sailor But what can one do if one happens to be a sea serpent? Anko inquired There is nothing in the sea that can hurt me and I cannot commit suicide because we have no carbolic acid or firearms or gas to turn on So it isn't a matter of choice and I'd about as soon be alive as dead It does not seem quite so monotonous you know But I guess I've stayed about long enough so I'll go home to
children	you It must be dreadful to have us to look after in the holidays But not at all said Mademoiselle in her turn I am sure you will be very good childrens Gerald's look assured her that he and the others would be as near angels as children could be without ceasing to be human We'll try he said earnestly Can one do anything for you? asked the French governess kindly Oh no thank you said Gerald We don't want to give you any trouble at all And I was thinking it would be less trouble for you if we were to go out into the woods all day tomorrow and take our dinner with us something cold you know so as not to be a trouble to the cook You are very considerate said Mademoiselle coldly Then Gerald's eyes smiled; they had a trick of doing this when his lips were quite serious Mademoiselle caught the twinkle and she laughed and Gerald laughed too Little deceiver! she said Why not say at once you want to be free of surveillance how you say overwatching without pretending it is me you wish to please? You have to be careful with grown-ups said Gerald but it isn't all pretence either We don't want to trouble you and we don't want you to To trouble you Eh bien! Your parents they permit these days at woods? Oh yes said Gerald truthfully Then I will not be more a dragon than the parents I will forewarn the cook Are you content? Rather! said Gerald Mademoiselle you are a dear A deer? she repeated a stag? No a a cherie said Gerald a regular A1 cherie And you sha'n't repent it Is there anything we can do for you wind your wool or find your spectacles or ? He thinks me a grandmother! said Mademoiselle laughing more than ever Go then and be not more naughty than you must Well what luck? the others asked It's all right said Gerald indifferently I told you it would be The ingenuous youth won the regard of the foreign governess who in her youth had been the beauty of her humble village I don't believe she ever was She's too stern said Kathleen Ah! said Gerald that's only because you don't know how to manage her She wasn't stern with me I say what a humbug you are though aren't you? said Jimmy No I'm a dip what's-its-name? Something like an ambassador Dipsoplomatist that's what I am Anyhow we've got our day and if we don't find a cave in it my name's not Jack Robinson Mademoiselle less stern than Kathleen had ever seen her presided at supper which was bread and treacle spread several hours before and now harder and drier than any other food you can think of Gerald was very polite in handing her butter and cheese and pressing her to taste the bread and treacle Bah! it is like sand in the mouth of a dryness! Is it possible this pleases you? No said Gerald it is not possible but it is not polite for boys to make remarks about their food! She laughed but there was no more dried bread and treacle for supper after that How do you do it? Kathleen whispered admiringly as they said good night Oh it's quite easy when you've once got a grownup to see what you're after You'll see I shall drive her with a rein of darning cotton after this Next morning Gerald got up early and gathered a little bunch of pink carnations from a plant which he found hidden among the marigolds He tied it up with black cotton and laid it on Mademoiselle's plate She smiled and looked quite handsome as she stuck the flowers in her belt Do you think it's quite decent Jimmy asked later sort of bribing people to let you do as you like with flowers and things and passing them the salt? It's not that said Kathleen suddenly I know what Gerald means only I never think of the things in time myself You see if you
children	sure to find something One of the chaps told me his father said when he was a boy there used to be a little cave under the bank in a lane near the Salisbury Road; but he said there was an enchanted castle there too so perhaps the cave isn't true either If we were to get horns said Kathleen and to blow them very hard all the way we might find a magic castle If you've got the money to throw away on horns said Jimmy contemptuously Well I have as it happens so there! said Kathleen And the horns were bought in a tiny shop with a bulging window full of a tangle of toys and sweets and cucumbers and sour apples And the quiet square at the end of the town where the church is and the houses of the most respectable people echoed to the sound of horns blown long and loud But none of the houses turned into enchanted castles Away they went along the Salisbury Road which was very hot and dusty so they agreed to drink one of the bottles of ginger-beer We might as well carry the ginger-beer inside us as inside the bottle said Jimmy and we can hide the bottle and call for it as we come back Presently they came to a place where the road as Gerald said went two ways at once That looks like adventures said Kathleen; and they took the right-hand road and the next time they took a turning it was a left-hand one so as to be quite fair Jimmy said and then a right-hand one and then a left and so on till they were completely lost Completely said Kathleen; how jolly! And now trees arched overhead and the banks of the road were high and bushy The adventurers had long since ceased to blow their horns It was too tiring to go on doing that when there was no one to be annoyed by it Oh kriky! observed Jimmy suddenly let's sit down a bit and have some of our dinner We might call it lunch you know he added persuasively So they sat down in the hedge and ate the ripe red gooseberries that were to have been their dessert And as they sat and rested and wished that their boots did not feel so full of feet Gerald leaned back against the bushes and the bushes gave way so that he almost fell over backward Something had yielded to the pressure of his back and there was the sound of something heavy that fell Oh Jimminy! he remarked recovering himself suddenly; there's something hollow in there the stone I was leaning against simply went! I wish it was a cave said Jimmy; but of course it isn't If we blow the horns perhaps it will be said Kathleen and hastily blew her own Gerald reached his hand through the bushes I can't feel anything but air he said; it's just a hole full of emptiness The other two pulled back the bushes There certainly was a hole in the bank I'm going to go in observed Gerald Oh don't! said his sister I wish you wouldn't Suppose there were snakes! Not likely said Gerald but he leaned forward and struck a match It is a cave! he cried and put his knee on the mossy stone he had been sitting on scrambled over it and disappeared A breathless pause followed You all right? asked Jimmy Yes; come on You'd better come feet first there's a bit of a drop I'll go next said Kathleen and went feet first as advised The feet waved wildly in the air Look out! said Gerald in the dark; you'll have my eye out Put your feet down girl not up It's no use trying to fly here there's no room He helped her by pulling her feet forcibly down and then lifting her under the arms She felt rustling dry leaves under her boots and stood ready to receive Jimmy who came in head first like one diving into an unknown sea It is a cave said Kathleen The young explorers explained Gerald blocking up the hole of entrance with his shoulders dazzled at first by the darkness of the cave could see nothing Darkness doesn't dazzle said Jimmy
children	showed that round a turning or angle of the cave there was daylight Attention! said Gerald; at least that was what he meant though what he said was Shun! as becomes the son of a soldier The others mechanically obeyed You will remain at attention till I give the word Slow march!' on which you will advance cautiously in open order following your hero leader taking care not to tread on the dead and wounded I wish you wouldn't! said Kathleen There aren't any said Jimmy feeling for her hand in the dark; he only means take care not to tumble over stones and things Here he found her hand and she screamed It's only me said Jimmy I thought you'd like me to hold it But you're just like a girl Their eyes had now begun to get accustomed to the darkness and all could see that they were in a rough stone cave that went straight on for about three or four yards and then turned sharply to the right Death or victory! remarked Gerald Now then Slow march! He advanced carefully picking his way among the loose earth and stones that were the floor of the cave A sail a sail! he cried as he turned the corner How splendid! Kathleen drew a long breath as she came out into the sunshine I don't see any sail said Jimmy following The narrow passage ended in a round arch all fringed with ferns and creepers They passed through the arch into a deep narrow gully whose banks were of stones moss-covered; and in the crannies grew more ferns and long grasses Trees growing on the top of the bank arched across and the sunlight came through in changing patches of brightness turning the gully to a roofed corridor of goldy-green The path which was of greeny-grey flagstones where heaps of leaves had drifted sloped steeply down and at the end of it was another round arch quite dark inside above which rose rocks and grass and bushes It's like the outside of a railway tunnel said James It's the entrance to the enchanted castle said Kathleen Let's blow the horns Dry up! said Gerald The bold Captain reproving the silly chatter of his subordinates I like that! said Jimmy indignant I thought you would resumed Gerald of his subordinates bade them advance with caution and in silence because after all there might be somebody about and the other arch might be an ice-house or something dangerous What? asked Kathleen anxiously Bears perhaps said Gerald briefly There aren't any bears without bars in England anyway said Jimmy They call bears bars in America he added absently Quick march! was Gerald's only reply And they marched Under the drifted damp leaves the path was firm and stony to their shuffling feet At the dark arch they stopped There are steps down said Jimmy It is an ice-house said Gerald Don't let's said Kathleen Our hero said Gerald who nothing could dismay raised the faltering hopes of his abject minions by saying that he was jolly well going on and they could do as they liked about it If you call names said Jimmy you can go on by yourself He added So there! It's part of the game silly explained Gerald kindly You can be Captain tomorrow so you'd better hold your jaw now and begin to think about what names you'll call us when it's your turn Very slowly and carefully they went down the steps A vaulted stone arched over their heads Gerald struck a match when the last step was found to have no edge and to be in fact the beginning of a passage turning to the left This said Jimmy will take us back into the road
children	splash into the lake Steps fed from the terrace to the water and other steps to the green lawns beside it Away across the grassy slopes deer were feeding and in the distance where the groves of trees thickened into what looked almost a forest were enormous shapes of grey stone like nothing that the children had ever seen before That chap at school said Gerald It is an enchanted castle said Kathleen I don't see any castle said Jimmy What do you call that then? Gerald pointed to where beyond a belt of lime-trees white towers and turrets broke the blue of the sky There doesn't seem to be anyone about said Kathleen and yet it's all so tidy I believe it is magic Magic mowing machines Jimmy suggested If we were in a book it would be an enchanted castle certain to be said Kathleen It is an enchanted castle said Gerald in hollow tones But there aren't any Jimmy was quite positive How do you know? Do you think there's nothing in the world but what you've seen? His scorn was crushing I think magic went out when people began to have steam-engines Jimmy insisted and newspapers and telephones and wireless telegraphing Wireless is rather like magic when you come to think of it said Gerald Oh that sort! Jimmy's contempt was deep Perhaps there's given up being magic because people didn't believe in it any more said Kathleen Well don't let's spoil the show with any silly old not believing said Gerald with decision I'm going to believe in magic as hard as I can This is an enchanted garden and that's an enchanted castle and I'm jolly well going to explore The dauntless knight then led the way leaving his ignorant squires to follow or not just as they jolly well chose He rolled off the balustrade and strode firmly down towards the lawn his boots making as they went a clatter full of determination The others followed There never was such a garden out of a picture or a fairy-tale They passed quite close by the deer who only raised their pretty heads to look and did not seem startled at all And after a long stretch of turf they passed under the heaped-up heavy masses of lime-trees and came into a rose-garden bordered with thick close-cut yew hedges and lying red and pink and green and white in the sun like a giant's many-coloured highly-scented pocket-handkerchief I know we shall meet a gardener in a minute and he'll ask what we re doing here And then what will you say? Kathleen asked with her nose in a rose I shall say we have lost our way and it will be quite true said Gerald But they did not meet a gardener or anybody else and the feeling of magic got thicker and thicker till they were almost afraid of the sound of their feet in the great silent place Beyond the rose garden was a yew hedge with an arch cut in it and it was the beginning of a maze like the one in Hampton Court Now said Gerald you mark my words In the middle of this maze we shall find the secret enchantment Draw your swords my merry men all and hark forward tallyho in the utmost silence Which they did It was very hot in the maze between the close yew hedges and the way to the maze's heart was hidden well Again and again they found themselves at the black yew arch that opened on the rose garden and they were all glad that they had brought large clean pocket-handkerchiefs with them It was when they found themselves there for the fourth time that Jimmy suddenly cried Oh I wish ' and then stopped short very suddenly Oh! he added in quite a different voice where's the dinner? And then in a stricken silence they all remembered that the basket with the dinner had been left at the entrance of the cave Their thoughts dwelt fondly on the slices of cold mutton the six tomatoes the bread and butter the screwed-up paper of salt the apple turnovers and the little thick glass that one drank the ginger-beer out of Let's go back said Jimmy now this minute and get our things and have our dinner Let's have one more try at the maze I hate giving things up said Gerald I am so hungry! said Jimmy
children	the thimble There was Come said Gerald in low urgent tones if you are adventurers be adventurers; and anyhow I expect someone has gone along the road and bagged the mutton hours ago He walked forward winding the red thread round his fingers as he went And it was a clew and it led them right into the middle of the maze And in the very middle of the maze they came upon the wonder The red clew led them up two stone steps to a round grass plot There was a sun-dial in the middle and all round against the yew hedge a low wide marble seat The red clew ran straight across the grass and by the sun-dial and ended in a small brown hand with jewelled rings on every finger The hand was naturally attached to an arm and that had many bracelets on it sparkling with red and blue and green stones The arm wore a sleeve of pink and gold brocaded silk faded a little here and there but still extremely imposing and the sleeve was part of a dress which was worn by a lady who lay on the stone seat asleep in the sun The rosy gold dress fell open over an embroidered petticoat of a soft green colour There was old yellow lace the colour of scalded cream and a thin white veil spangled with silver stars covered the face It's the enchanted Princess said Gerald now really impressed I told you so It's the Sleeping Beauty said Kathleen It is look how old-fashioned her clothes are like the pictures of Marie Antoinette's ladies in the history book She has slept for a hundred years Oh Gerald you're the eldest; you must be the Prince and we never knew it She isn't really a Princess said Jimmy But the others laughed at him partly because his saying things like that was enough to spoil any game and partly because they really were not at all sure that it was not a Princess who lay there as still as the sunshine Every stage of the adventure the cave the wonderful gardens the maze the clew had deepened the feeling of magic till now Kathleen and Gerald were almost completely bewitched Lift the veil up Jerry said Kathleen in a whisper if she isn't beautiful we shall know she can't be the Princess Lift it yourself said Gerald I expect you're forbidden to touch the figures said Jimmy It's not wax silly said his brother No said his sister wax wouldn't be much good in this sun And besides you can see her breathing It's the Princess right enough She very gently lifted the edge of the veil and turned it back The Princess's face was small and white between long plaits of black hair Her nose was straight and her brows finely traced There were a few freckles on cheekbones and nose No wonder whispered Kathleen sleeping all these years in all this sun! Her mouth was not a rosebud But all the same Isn't she lovely! Kathleen murmured Not so dusty Gerald was understood to reply Now Jerry said Kathleen firmly you're the eldest Of course I am said Gerald uneasily Well you've got to wake the Princess She's not a Princess said Jimmy with his hands in the pockets of his knickerbockers; she's only a little girl dressed up But she's in long dresses urged Kathleen Yes but look what a little way down her frock her feet come She wouldn't be any taller than Jerry if she was to stand up Now then urged Kathleen Jerry don't be silly You've got to do it Do what? asked Gerald kicking his left boot with his right Why kiss her awake of course Not me! was Gerald's unhesitating rejoinder Well someone's got to She'd go for me as likely as not the minute she woke up said Gerald anxiously I'd do it like a shot said Kathleen but I don't suppose it ud make any difference me kissing her She did it; and it didn't The Princess still lay in deep slumber Then you must Jimmy I dare say you'll do Jump back quickly before she can hit you
children	were going to slap anyone My noble preserver! said the Princess and held out her hand Jimmy shook it vigorously But I say said he you aren't really a Princess are you? Of course I am she answered; who else could I be? Look at my crown! She pulled aside the spangled veil and showed beneath it a coronet of what even Jimmy could not help seeing to be diamonds But said Jimmy Why she said opening her eyes very wide you must have known about my being here or you'd never have come How did you get past the dragons? Gerald ignored the question I say he said do you really believe in magic and all that? I ought to she said if anybody does Look here's the place where I pricked my finger with the spindle She showed a little scar on her wrist Then this really is an enchanted castle? Of course it is said the Princess How stupid you are! She stood up and her pink brocaded dress lay in bright waves about her feet I said her dress would be too long said Jimmy It was the right length when I went to sleep said the Princess; it must have grown in the hundred years I don't believe you're a Princess at all said Jimmy; at least Don't bother about believing it if you don't like said the Princess It doesn't so much matter what you believe as what I am She turned to the others Let's go back to the castle she said and I'll show you all my lovely jewels and things Wouldn't you like that? Yes said Gerald with very plain hesitation But But what? The Princess's tone was impatient But we're most awfully hungry Oh so am I! cried the Princess We've had nothing to eat since breakfast And it's three now said the Princess looking at the sun-dial Why you've had nothing to eat for hours and hours and hours But think of me! I haven't had anything to eat for a hundred years Come along to the castle The mice will have eaten everything said Jimmy sadly He saw now that she really was a Princess Not they cried the Princess joyously You forget everything's enchanted here Time simply stood still for a hundred years Come along and one of you must carry my train or I shan't be able to move now it's grown such a frightful length When you are young so many things are difficult to believe and yet the dullest people will tell you that they are true such things for instance as that the earth goes round the sun and that it is not flat but round But the things that seem really likely like fairy-tales and magic are so say the grown-ups not true at all Yet they are so easy to believe especially when you see them happening And as I am always telling you the most wonderful things happen to all sorts of people only you never hear about them because the people think that no one will believe their stories and so they don't tell them to any one except me And they tell me because they know that I can believe anything When Jimmy had awakened the Sleeping Princess and she had invited the three children to go with her to her palace and get something to eat they all knew quite surely that they had come into a place of magic happenings And they walked in a slow procession along the grass towards the castle The Princess went first and Kathleen carried her shining train; then came Jimmy and Gerald came last They were all quite sure that they had walked right into the middle of a fairy-tale and they were the more ready to believe it because they were so tired and hungry They were in fact so hungry and tired that they hardly noticed where they were going or observed the beauties of the formal gardens through which the pink-silk Princess was leading them They were in a sort of dream from which they only partially awakened to find themselves in a big hail with suits of armour and old flags round the walls the skins of beasts on the floor and heavy oak tables and benches ranged along it The Princess entered slow and stately but once inside she twitched her sheeny train out of Jimmy's hand and turned to the three You just wait here a minute she said and mind you don't talk
children	children's fancy had been busy with Anyhow this was nothing like it The heavy tray held a loaf of bread a lump of cheese and a brown jug of water The rest of its heaviness was just plates and mugs and knives Come along said the Princess hospitably I couldn't find anything but bread and cheese but it doesn't matter because everything's magic here and unless you have some dreadful secret fault the bread and cheese will turn into anything you like What would you like? she asked Kathleen Roast chicken said Kathleen without hesitation The pinky Princess cut a slice of bread and laid it on a dish There you are she said roast chicken Shall I carve it or will you? You please said Kathleen and received a piece of dry bread on a plate Green peas? asked the Princess cut a piece of cheese and laid it beside the bread Kathleen began to eat the bread cutting it up with knife and fork as you would eat chicken It was no use owning that she didn't see any chicken and peas or anything but cheese and dry bread because that would be owning that she had some dreadful secret fault If I have it is a secret even from me she told herself The others asked for roast beef and cabbage and got it she supposed though to her it only looked like dry bread and Dutch cheese I do wonder what my dreadful secret fault is she thought as the Princess remarked that as for her she could fancy a slice of roast peacock This one she added lifting a second mouthful of dry bread on her fork is quite delicious It's a game isn't it? asked Jimmy suddenly What's a game? asked the Princess frowning Pretending it's beef the bread and cheese I mean A game? But it is beef Look at it said the Princess opening her eyes very wide Yes of course said Jimmy feebly I was only joking Bread and cheese is not perhaps so good as roast beef or chicken or peacock (I'm not sure about the peacock I never tasted peacock did you?); but bread and cheese is at any rate very much better than nothing when you have gone on having nothing since breakfast (gooseberries and ginger-beer hardly count) and it is long past your proper dinner-time Everyone ate and drank and felt much better Now said the Princess brushing the bread crumbs off her green silk lap if you're sure you won't have any more meat you can come and see my treasures Sure you won't take the least bit more chicken? No? Then follow me She got up and they followed her down the long hall to the end where the great stone stairs ran up at each side and joined in a broad flight leading to the gallery above Under the stairs was a hanging of tapestry Beneath this arras said the Princess is the door leading to my private apartments She held the tapestry up with both hands for it was heavy and showed a little door that had been hidden by it The key she said hangs above And so it did on a large rusty nail Put it in said the Princess and turn it Gerald did so and the great key creaked and grated in the lock Now push she said; push hard all of you They pushed hard all of them The door gave way and they fell over each other into the dark space beyond The Princess dropped the curtain and came after them closing the door behind her Look out! she said; look out! there are two steps down Thank you said Gerald rubbing his knee at the bottom of the steps We found that out for ourselves I'm sorry said the Princess but you can't have hurt yourselves much Go straight on There aren't any more steps They went straight on in the dark When you come to the door just turn the handle and go in Then stand still till I find the matches I know where they are
children	asked Kathleen politely are the treasures? Don't you see them? asked the Princess No we don't said Jimmy bluntly You don't come that bread-and-cheese game with me not twice over you don't! If you really don't see them said the Princess I suppose I shall have to say the charm Shut your eyes please And give me your word of honour you won't look till I tell you and that you'll never tell anyone what you've seen Their words of honour were something that the children would rather not have given just then but they gave them all the same and shut their eyes tight Wiggadil yougadoo begadee leegadeeve nowgadow? said the Princess rapidly; and they heard the swish of her silk train moving across the room Then there was a creaking rustling noise She's locking us in! cried Jimmy Your word of honour gasped Gerald Oh do be quick! moaned Kathleen You may look said the voice of the Princess And they looked The room was not the same room yet yes the starry-vaulted blue ceiling was there and below it half a dozen feet of the dark panelling but below that the walls of the room blazed and sparkled with white and blue and red and green and gold and silver Shelves ran round the room and on them were gold cups and silver dishes and platters and goblets set with gems ornaments of gold and silver tiaras of diamonds necklaces of rubies strings of emeralds and pearls all set out in unimaginable splendour against a background of faded blue velvet It was like the Crown jewels that you see when your kind uncle takes you to the Tower only there seemed to be far more jewels than you or anyone else has ever seen together at the Tower or anywhere else The three children remained breathless open-mouthed staring at the sparkling splendours all about them while the Princess stood her arm stretched out in a gesture of command and a proud smile on her lips My word! said Gerald in a low whisper But no one spoke out loud They waited as if spellbound for the Princess to speak She spoke What price bread-and-cheese games now? she asked triumphantly Can I do magic or can't I? You can; oh you can! said Kathleen May we may we touch? asked Gerald All that's mine is yours said the Princess with a generous wave of her brown hand and added quickly Only of course you mustn't take anything away with you We're not thieves! said Jimmy The others were already turning over the wonderful things on the blue velvet shelves Perhaps not said the Princess but you're a very unbelieving little boy You think I can't see inside you but I can I know what you've been thinking What? asked Jimmy Oh you know well enough said the Princess You're thinking about the bread and cheese that I changed into beef and about your secret fault I say let's all dress up and you be princes and princesses too To crown our hero said Gerald lifting a gold crown with a cross on the top was the work of a moment He put the crown on his head and added a collar of SS and a zone of sparkling emeralds which would not quite meet round his middle He turned from fixing it by an ingenious adaptation of his belt to find the others already decked with diadems necklaces and rings How splendid you look! said the Princess and how I wish your clothes were prettier What ugly clothes people wear nowadays! A hundred years ago Kathleen stood quite still with a diamond bracelet raised in her hand I say she said The King and Queen? What King and Queen? asked the Princess Your father and mother your sorrowing parents said Kathleen They'll have waked up by now Won't they be wanting to see you after a hundred years you know? Oh ah yes said the Princess slowly I embraced my rejoicing parents when I got the bread and cheese They re having their dinner They won't expect me yet Here she added hastily putting
children	As Kathleen was fitting the last shining ornament into its proper place she saw that part of the shelf near it held not bright jewels but rings and brooches and chains as well as queer things that she did not know the names of and all were of dull metal and odd shapes What's all this rubbish? she asked Rubbish indeed! said the Princess Why those are all magic things! This bracelet anyone who wears it has got to speak the truth This chain makes you as strong as ten men; if you wear this spur your horse will go a mile a minute; or if you're walking it's the same as seven-league boots What does this brooch do? asked Kathleen reaching out her hand The princess caught her by the wrist You mustn't touch she said; if anyone but me touches them all the magic goes out at once and never comes back That brooch will give you any wish you like And this ring? Jimmy pointed Oh that makes you invisible What's this? asked Gerald showing a curious buckle Oh that undoes the effect of all the other charms Do you mean really? Jimmy asked You're not just kidding? Kidding indeed! repeated the Princess scornfully I should have thought I'd shown you enough magic to prevent you speaking to a Princess like that! I say said Gerald visibly excited You might show us how some of the things act Couldn't you give us each a wish? The Princess did not at once answer And the minds of the three played with granted wishes brilliant yet thoroughly reasonable the kind of wish that never seems to occur to people in fairy-tales when they suddenly get a chance to have their three wishes granted No said the Princess suddenly no; I can't give wishes to you it only gives me wishes But I'll let you see the ring make me invisible Only you must shut your eyes while I do it They shut them Count fifty said the Princess and then you may look And then you must shut them again and count fifty and I'll reappear Gerald counted aloud Through the counting one could hear a creaking rustling sound Forty-seven forty-eight forty-nine fifty! said Gerald and they opened their eyes They were alone in the room The jewels had vanished and so had the Princess She's gone out by the door of course said Jimmy but the door was locked That is magic said Kathleen breathlessly Maskelyne and Devant can do that trick said Jimmy And I want my tea Your tea! Gerald's tone was full of contempt The lovely Princess he went on reappeared as soon as our hero had finished counting fifty One two three four Gerald and Kathleen had both closed their eyes But somehow Jimmy hadn't He didn't mean to cheat he just forgot And as Gerald's count reached twenty he saw a panel under the window open slowly Her he said to himself I knew it was a trick! and at once shut his eyes like an honourable little boy On the word fifty six eyes opened And the panel was closed and there was no Princess She hasn't pulled it off this time said Gerald Perhaps you'd better count again said Kathleen I believe there's a cupboard under the window said Jimmy and she's hidden in it Secret panel you know You looked! That's cheating said the voice of the Princess so close to his ear that he quite jumped I didn't cheat Where on earth What ever said all three together For still there was no Princess to be seen Come back visible Princess dear said Kathleen Shall we shut our eyes and count again?
children	Can't you see we can't? asked Jimmy rather unreasonably The sun was blazing in at the window; the eight-sided room was very hot and everyone was getting cross You can't see me? There was the sound of a sob in the voice of the invisible Princess No I tell you said Jimmy and I want my tea and What he was saying was broken off short as one might break a stick of sealing wax And then in the golden afternoon a really quite horrid thing happened: Jimmy suddenly leaned backwards then forwards his eyes opened wide and his mouth too Backward and forward he went very quickly and abruptly then stood still Oh he's in a fit! Oh Jimmy dear Jimmy! cried Kathleen hurrying to him What is it dear what is it? It's not a fit gasped Jimmy angrily She shook me Yes said the voice of the Princess and I'll shake him again if he keeps on saying he can't see me You'd better shake me said Gerald angrily I'm nearer your own size And instantly she did But not for long The moment Gerald felt hands on his shoulders he put up his own and caught those other hands by the wrists And there he was holding wrists that he couldn't see It was a dreadful sensation An invisible kick made him wince but he held tight to the wrists Cathy he cried come and hold her legs; she's kicking me Where? cried Kathleen anxious to help I don't see any legs This is her hands I've got cried Gerald She is invisible right enough Get hold of this hand and then you can feel your way down to her legs Kathleen did so I wish I could make you understand how very very uncomfortable and frightening it is to feel in broad daylight hands and arms that you can't see I won't have you hold my legs said the invisible Princess struggling violently What are you so cross about? Gerald was quite calm You said you'd be invisible and you are I'm not You are really Look in the glass I'm not; I can't be Look in the glass Gerald repeated quite unmoved Let go then she said Gerald did and the moment he had done so he found it impossible to believe that he really had been holding invisible hands You're just pretending not to see me said the Princess anxiously aren't you? Do say you are You've had your joke with me Don't keep it up I don't like it On our sacred word of honour said Gerald you're still invisible There was a silence Then Come said the Princess I'll let you out and you can go I'm tired of playing with you They followed her voice to the door and through it and along the little passage into the hall No one said anything Everyone felt very uncomfortable Let's get out of this whispered Jimmy as they got to the end of the hall But the voice of the Princess said: Come out this way; it's quicker I think you're perfectly hateful I'm sorry I ever played with you Mother always told me not to play with strange children A door abruptly opened though no hand was seen to touch it Come through can't you! said the voice of the Princess It was a little ante-room with long narrow mirrors between its long narrow windows Good-bye said Gerald Thanks for giving us such a jolly time Let's part friends he added holding out his hand An unseen hand was slowly put in his which closed on it vice-like Now he said you've jolly well got to look in the glass and own that we're not liars
adult	felt a strange chill and a lonely feeling come over me But a cloak was thrown over my shoulders and a rug across my knees and the driver said in excellent German-- The night is chill mein Herr and my master the Count bade me take all care of you There is a flask of slivovitz (the plum brandy of the country) underneath the seat if you should require it I did not take any but it was a comfort to know it was there all the same I felt a little strangely and not a little frightened I think had there been any alternative I should have taken it instead of prosecuting that unknown night journey The carriage went at a hard pace straight along then we made a complete turn and went along another straight road It seemed to me that we were simply going over and over the same ground again and so I took note of some salient point and found that this was so I would have liked to have asked the driver what this all meant but I really feared to do so for I thought that placed as I was any protest would have had no effect in case there had been an intention to delay By-and-by however as I was curious to know how time was passing I struck a match and by its flame looked at my watch It was within a few minutes of midnight This gave me a sort of shock for I suppose the general superstition about midnight was increased by my recent experiences I waited with a sick feeling of suspense Then a dog began to howl somewhere in a farmhouse far down the road a long agonized wailing as if from fear The sound was taken up by another dog and then another and another till borne on the wind which now sighed softly through the Pass a wild howling began which seemed to come from all over the country as far as the imagination could grasp it through the gloom of the night At the first howl the horses began to strain and rear but the driver spoke to them soothingly and they quieted down but shivered and sweated as though after a runaway from sudden fright Then far off in the distance from the mountains on each side of us began a louder and a sharper howling that of wolves which affected both the horses and myself in the same way For I was minded to jump from the caleche and run whilst they reared again and plunged madly so that the driver had to use all his great strength to keep them from bolting In a few minutes however my own ears got accustomed to the sound and the horses so far became quiet that the driver was able to descend and to stand before them He petted and soothed them and whispered something in their ears as I have heard of horse-tamers doing and with extraordinary effect for under his caresses they became quite manageable again though they still trembled The driver again took his seat and shaking his reins started off at a great pace This time after going to the far side of the Pass he suddenly turned down a narrow roadway which ran sharply to the right Soon we were hemmed in with trees which in places arched right over the roadway till we passed as through a tunnel And again great frowning rocks guarded us boldly on either side Though we were in shelter we could hear the rising wind for it moaned and whistled through the rocks and the branches of the trees crashed together as we swept along It grew colder and colder still and fine powdery snow began to fall so that soon we and all around us were covered with a white blanket The keen wind still carried the howling of the dogs though this grew fainter as we went on our way The baying of the wolves sounded nearer and nearer as though they were closing round on us from every side I grew dreadfully afraid and the horses shared my fear The driver however was not in the least disturbed He kept turning his head to left and right but I could not see anything through the darkness Suddenly away on our left I saw a faint flickering blue flame The driver saw it at the same moment He at once checked the horses and jumping to the ground disappeared into the darkness I did not know what to do the less as the howling of the wolves grew closer But while I wondered the driver suddenly appeared again and without a word took his seat and we resumed our journey I think I must have fallen asleep and kept dreaming of the incident for it seemed to be repeated endlessly and now looking back it is like a sort of awful nightmare Once the flame appeared so near the road that even in the darkness around us I could watch the driver's motions He went rapidly to where the blue flame arose it must have been very faint for it did not seem to illumine the place around it at all and gathering a few stones formed them into some device Once there appeared a strange optical effect When he stood between me and the flame he did not obstruct it for I could see its ghostly flicker all the same This startled me but as the effect was only momentary I took it that my eyes deceived me straining through the darkness Then for a time there were no blue flames and we sped onwards through the gloom with the howling of the wolves around us as though they were following in a moving circle At last there came a time when the driver went further afield than he had yet gone and during his absence the horses began to tremble worse than ever and to snort and scream with fright I could not see any cause for it for the howling of the wolves had ceased altogether But just then the moon sailing through the black clouds appeared behind the jagged crest of a beetling pine-clad rock and by its light I saw around us a ring of wolves with white teeth and lolling red tongues with long sinewy limbs and shaggy hair They were a hundred times more terrible in the grim silence which held them than even when they howled For myself I felt a sort of paralysis of fear It is only when a man feels himself face to face with such
adult	time seemed interminable as we swept on our way now in almost complete darkness for the rolling clouds obscured the moon We kept on ascending with occasional periods of quick descent but in the main always ascending Suddenly I became conscious of the fact that the driver was in the act of pulling up the horses in the courtyard of a vast ruined castle from whose tall black windows came no ray of light and whose broken battlements showed a jagged line against the sky CHAPTER 2 Jonathan Harker's Journal Continued 5 May --I must have been asleep for certainly if I had been fully awake I must have noticed the approach of such a remarkable place In the gloom the courtyard looked of considerable size and as several dark ways led from it under great round arches it perhaps seemed bigger than it really is I have not yet been able to see it by daylight When the caleche stopped the driver jumped down and held out his hand to assist me to alight Again I could not but notice his prodigious strength His hand actually seemed like a steel vice that could have crushed mine if he had chosen Then he took my traps and placed them on the ground beside me as I stood close to a great door old and studded with large iron nails and set in a projecting doorway of massive stone I could see even in the dim light that the stone was massively carved but that the carving had been much worn by time and weather As I stood the driver jumped again into his seat and shook the reins The horses started forward and trap and all disappeared down one of the dark openings I stood in silence where I was for I did not know what to do Of bell or knocker there was no sign Through these frowning walls and dark window openings it was not likely that my voice could penetrate The time I waited seemed endless and I felt doubts and fears crowding upon me What sort of place had I come to and among what kind of people? What sort of grim adventure was it on which I had embarked? Was this a customary incident in the life of a solicitor's clerk sent out to explain the purchase of a London estate to a foreigner? Solicitor's clerk! Mina would not like that Solicitor for just before leaving London I got word that my examination was successful and I am now a full-blown solicitor! I began to rub my eyes and pinch myself to see if I were awake It all seemed like a horrible nightmare to me and I expected that I should suddenly awake and find myself at home with the dawn struggling in through the windows as I had now and again felt in the morning after a day of overwork But my flesh answered the pinching test and my eyes were not to be deceived I was indeed awake and among the Carpathians All I could do now was to be patient and to wait the coming of morning Just as I had come to this conclusion I heard a heavy step approaching behind the great door and saw through the chinks the gleam of a coming light Then there was the sound of rattling chains and the clanking of massive bolts drawn back A key was turned with the loud grating noise of long disuse and the great door swung back Within stood a tall old man clean shaven save for a long white moustache and clad in black from head to foot without a single speck of colour about him anywhere He held in his hand an antique silver lamp in which the flame burned without a chimney or globe of any kind throwing long quivering shadows as it flickered in the draught of the open door The old man motioned me in with his right hand with a courtly gesture saying in excellent English but with a strange intonation Welcome to my house! Enter freely and of your own free will! He made no motion of stepping to meet me but stood like a statue as though his gesture of welcome had fixed him into stone The instant however that I had stepped over the threshold he moved impulsively forward and holding out his hand grasped mine with a strength which made me wince an effect which was not lessened by the fact that it seemed cold as ice more like the hand of a dead than a living man Again he said Welcome to my house! Enter freely Go safely and leave something of the happiness you bring! The strength of the handshake was so much akin to that which I had noticed in the driver whose face I had not seen that for a moment I doubted if it were not the same person to whom I was speaking So to make sure I said interrogatively Count Dracula? He bowed in a courtly way as he replied I am Dracula and I bid you welcome Mr Harker to my house Come in the night air is chill and you must need to eat and rest As he was speaking he put the lamp on a bracket on the wall and stepping out took my luggage He had carried it in before I could forestall him I protested but he insisted Nay sir you are my guest It is late and my people are not available Let me see to your comfort myself He insisted on carrying my traps along the passage and then up a great winding stair and along another great passage on whose stone floor our steps rang heavily At the end of this he threw open a heavy door and I rejoiced to see within a well-lit room in which a table was spread for
adult	I found supper already laid out My host who stood on one side of the great fireplace leaning against the stonework made a graceful wave of his hand to the table and said I pray you be seated and sup how you please You will I trust excuse me that I do not join you but I have dined already and I do not sup I handed to him the sealed letter which Mr Hawkins had entrusted to me He opened it and read it gravely Then with a charming smile he handed it to me to read One passage of it at least gave me a thrill of pleasure I must regret that an attack of gout from which malady I am a constant sufferer forbids absolutely any travelling on my part for some time to come But I am happy to say I can send a sufficient substitute one in whom I have every possible confidence He is a young man full of energy and talent in his own way and of a very faithful disposition He is discreet and silent and has grown into manhood in my service He shall be ready to attend on you when you will during his stay and shall take your instructions in all matters The count himself came forward and took off the cover of a dish and I fell to at once on an excellent roast chicken This with some cheese and a salad and a bottle of old tokay of which I had two glasses was my supper During the time I was eating it the Count asked me many questions as to my journey and I told him by degrees all I had experienced By this time I had finished my supper and by my host's desire had drawn up a chair by the fire and begun to smoke a cigar which he offered me at the same time excusing himself that he did not smoke I had now an opportunity of observing him and found him of a very marked physiognomy His face was a strong a very strong aquiline with high bridge of the thin nose and peculiarly arched nostrils with lofty domed forehead and hair growing scantily round the temples but profusely elsewhere His eyebrows were very massive almost meeting over the nose and with bushy hair that seemed to curl in its own profusion The mouth so far as I could see it under the heavy moustache was fixed and rather cruel-looking with peculiarly sharp white teeth These protruded over the lips whose remarkable ruddiness showed astonishing vitality in a man of his years For the rest his ears were pale and at the tops extremely pointed The chin was broad and strong and the cheeks firm though thin The general effect was one of extraordinary pallor Hitherto I had noticed the backs of his hands as they lay on his knees in the firelight and they had seemed rather white and fine But seeing them now close to me I could not but notice that they were rather coarse broad with squat fingers Strange to say there were hairs in the centre of the palm The nails were long and fine and cut to a sharp point As the Count leaned over me and his hands touched me I could not repress a shudder It may have been that his breath was rank but a horrible feeling of nausea came over me which do what I would I could not conceal The Count evidently noticing it drew back And with a grim sort of smile which showed more than he had yet done his protruberant teeth sat himself down again on his own side of the fireplace We were both silent for a while and as I looked towards the window I saw the first dim streak of the coming dawn There seemed a strange stillness over everything But as I listened I heard as if from down below in the valley the howling of many wolves The Count's eyes gleamed and he said Listen to them the children of the night What music they make! Seeing I suppose some expression in my face strange to him he added Ah sir you dwellers in the city cannot enter into the feelings of the hunter Then he rose and said But you must be tired Your bedroom is all ready and tomorrow you shall sleep as late as you will I have to be away till the afternoon so sleep well and dream well! With a courteous bow he opened for me himself the door to the octagonal room and I entered my bedroom I am all in a sea of wonders I doubt I fear I think strange things which I dare not confess to my own soul God keep me if only for the sake of those dear to me! 7 May --It is again early morning but I have rested and enjoyed the last twenty-four hours I slept till late in the day and awoke of my own accord When I had dressed myself I went into the room where we had supped and found a cold breakfast laid out with coffee kept hot by the pot being placed on the hearth There was a card on the table on which was written-- I have to be absent for a while Do not wait for me D I set to and enjoyed a hearty meal When I had done I looked for a bell so that I might let the servants know I had finished but I could not find one There are certainly odd deficiencies in the house considering the extraordinary evidences of wealth which are round me The table service is of gold and so beautifully wrought that it must be of immense value The curtains and upholstery of the chairs and sofas and the hangings of my bed are of the costliest and most beautiful fabrics and must have been of fabulous value when they were made for they are centuries old though
adult	English life and customs and manners There were even such books of reference as the London Directory the Red and Blue books Whitaker's Almanac the Army and Navy Lists and it somehow gladdened my heart to see it the Law List Whilst I was looking at the books the door opened and the Count entered He saluted me in a hearty way and hoped that I had had a good night's rest Then he went on I am glad you found your way in here for I am sure there is much that will interest you These companions and he laid his hand on some of the books have been good friends to me and for some years past ever since I had the idea of going to London have given me many many hours of pleasure Through them I have come to know your great England and to know her is to love her I long to go through the crowded streets of your mighty London to be in the midst of the whirl and rush of humanity to share its life its change its death and all that makes it what it is But alas! As yet I only know your tongue through books To you my friend I look that I know it to speak But Count I said You know and speak English thoroughly! He bowed gravely I thank you my friend for your all too-flattering estimate but yet I fear that I am but a little way on the road I would travel True I know the grammar and the words but yet I know not how to speak them Indeed I said You speak excellently Not so he answered Well I know that did I move and speak in your London none there are who would not know me for a stranger That is not enough for me Here I am noble I am a Boyar The common people know me and I am master But a stranger in a strange land he is no one Men know him not and to know not is to care not for I am content if I am like the rest so that no man stops if he sees me or pauses in his speaking if he hears my words 'Ha ha! A stranger!' I have been so long master that I would be master still or at least that none other should be master of me You come to me not alone as agent of my friend Peter Hawkins of Exeter to tell me all about my new estate in London You shall I trust rest here with me a while so that by our talking I may learn the English intonation And I would that you tell me when I make error even of the smallest in my speaking I am sorry that I had to be away so long today but you will I know forgive one who has so many important affairs in hand Of course I said all I could about being willing and asked if I might come into that room when I chose He answered Yes certainly and added You may go anywhere you wish in the castle except where the doors are locked where of course you will not wish to go There is reason that all things are as they are and did you see with my eyes and know with my knowledge you would perhaps better understand I said I was sure of this and then he went on We are in Transylvania and Transylvania is not England Our ways are not your ways and there shall be to you many strange things Nay from what you have told me of your experiences already you know something of what strange things there may be This led to much conversation and as it was evident that he wanted to talk if only for talking's sake I asked him many questions regarding things that had already happened to me or come within my notice Sometimes he sheered off the subject or turned the conversation by pretending not to understand but generally he answered all I asked most frankly Then as time went on and I had got somewhat bolder I asked him of some of the strange things of the preceding night as for instance why the coachman went to the places where he had seen the blue flames He then explained to me that it was commonly believed that on a certain night of the year last night in fact when all evil spirits are supposed to have unchecked sway a blue flame is seen over any place where treasure has been concealed That treasure has been hidden he went on in the region through which you came last night there can be but little doubt For it was the ground fought over for centuries by the Wallachian the Saxon and the Turk Why there is hardly a foot of soil in all this region that has not been enriched by the blood of men patriots or invaders In the old days there were stirring times when the Austrian and the Hungarian came up in hordes and the patriots went out to meet them men and women the aged and the children too and waited their coming on the rocks above the passes that they might sweep destruction on them with their artificial avalanches When the invader was triumphant he found but little for whatever there was had been sheltered in the friendly soil But how said I can it have remained so long undiscovered when there is a sure index to it if men will but take the trouble to look? The Count smiled and as his lips ran back over his gums the long sharp canine teeth showed out strangely He answered: Because your peasant is at heart a coward and a fool! Those flames only appear on one night and on that night no man of this land will if he can help it stir without his doors And dear sir even if he did he would not know what to do Why even the peasant that you tell me of who marked the place of the flame would not know where to look in daylight even for his own work Even you would not I dare be sworn be able to find these places again?
adult	me I fall into my country's habit of putting your patronymic first my friend Jonathan Harker will not be by my side to correct and aid me He will be in Exeter miles away probably working at papers of the law with my other friend Peter Hawkins So! We went thoroughly into the business of the purchase of the estate at Purfleet When I had told him the facts and got his signature to the necessary papers and had written a letter with them ready to post to Mr Hawkins he began to ask me how I had come across so suitable a place I read to him the notes which I had made at the time and which I inscribe here At Purfleet on a byroad I came across just such a place as seemed to be required and where was displayed a dilapidated notice that the place was for sale It was surrounded by a high wall of ancient structure built of heavy stones and has not been repaired for a large number of years The closed gates are of heavy old oak and iron all eaten with rust The estate is called Carfax no doubt a corruption of the old Quatre Face as the house is four sided agreeing with the cardinal points of the compass It contains in all some twenty acres quite surrounded by the solid stone wall above mentioned There are many trees on it which make it in places gloomy and there is a deep dark-looking pond or small lake evidently fed by some springs as the water is clear and flows away in a fair-sized stream The house is very large and of all periods back I should say to mediaeval times for one part is of stone immensely thick with only a few windows high up and heavily barred with iron It looks like part of a keep and is close to an old chapel or church I could not enter it as I had not the key of the door leading to it from the house but I have taken with my Kodak views of it from various points The house had been added to but in a very straggling way and I can only guess at the amount of ground it covers which must be very great There are but few houses close at hand one being a very large house only recently added to and formed into a private lunatic asylum It is not however visible from the grounds When I had finished he said I am glad that it is old and big I myself am of an old family and to live in a new house would kill me A house cannot be made habitable in a day and after all how few days go to make up a century I rejoice also that there is a chapel of old times We Transylvanian nobles love not to think that our bones may lie amongst the common dead I seek not gaiety nor mirth not the bright voluptuousness of much sunshine and sparkling waters which please the young and gay I am no longer young and my heart through weary years of mourning over the dead is not attuned to mirth Moreover the walls of my castle are broken The shadows are many and the wind breathes cold through the broken battlements and casements I love the shade and the shadow and would be alone with my thoughts when I may Somehow his words and his look did not seem to accord or else it was that his cast of face made his smile look malignant and saturnine Presently with an excuse he left me asking me to pull my papers together He was some little time away and I began to look at some of the books around me One was an atlas which I found opened naturally to England as if that map had been much used On looking at it I found in certain places little rings marked and on examining these I noticed that one was near London on the east side manifestly where his new estate was situated The other two were Exeter and Whitby on the Yorkshire coast It was the better part of an hour when the Count returned Aha! he said Still at your books? Good! But you must not work always Come! I am informed that your supper is ready He took my arm and we went into the next room where I found an excellent supper ready on the table The Count again excused himself as he had dined out on his being away from home But he sat as on the previous night and chatted whilst I ate After supper I smoked as on the last evening and the Count stayed with me chatting and asking questions on every conceivable subject hour after hour I felt that it was getting very late indeed but I did not say anything for I felt under obligation to meet my host's wishes in every way I was not sleepy as the long sleep yesterday had fortified me but I could not help experiencing that chill which comes over one at the coming of the dawn which is like in its way the turn of the tide They say that people who are near death die generally at the change to dawn or at the turn of the tide Anyone who has when tired and tied as it were to his post experienced this change in the atmosphere can well believe it All at once we heard the crow of the cock coming up with preternatural shrillness through the clear morning air Count Dracula jumping to his feet said Why there is the morning again! How remiss I am to let you stay up so long You must make your conversation regarding my dear new country of England less interesting so that I may not forget how time flies by us and with a courtly bow he quickly left me I went into my room and drew the curtains but there was little to notice My window opened into the courtyard all I could see was the warm grey of quickening sky So I pulled the curtains again and have written of this day 8 May --I began to fear as I wrote in this book that I was getting too diffuse But now I am glad that I went into detail from the first for there is something so strange about this place and all in it that I cannot but feel uneasy I wish I were safe out of it or that I had never come It may be that this strange night existence is telling on
adult	was beginning to increase that vague feeling of uneasiness which I always have when the Count is near But at the instant I saw that the cut had bled a little and the blood was trickling over my chin I laid down the razor turning as I did so half round to look for some sticking plaster When the Count saw my face his eyes blazed with a sort of demoniac fury and he suddenly made a grab at my throat I drew away and his hand touched the string of beads which held the crucifix It made an instant change in him for the fury passed so quickly that I could hardly believe that it was ever there Take care he said take care how you cut yourself It is more dangerous that you think in this country Then seizing the shaving glass he went on And this is the wretched thing that has done the mischief It is a foul bauble of man's vanity Away with it! And opening the window with one wrench of his terrible hand he flung out the glass which was shattered into a thousand pieces on the stones of the courtyard far below Then he withdrew without a word It is very annoying for I do not see how I am to shave unless in my watch-case or the bottom of the shaving pot which is fortunately of metal When I went into the dining room breakfast was prepared but I could not find the Count anywhere So I breakfasted alone It is strange that as yet I have not seen the Count eat or drink He must be a very peculiar man! After breakfast I did a little exploring in the castle I went out on the stairs and found a room looking towards the South The view was magnificent and from where I stood there was every opportunity of seeing it The castle is on the very edge of a terrific precipice A stone falling from the window would fall a thousand feet without touching anything! As far as the eye can reach is a sea of green tree tops with occasionally a deep rift where there is a chasm Here and there are silver threads where the rivers wind in deep gorges through the forests But I am not in heart to describe beauty for when I had seen the view I explored further Doors doors doors everywhere and all locked and bolted In no place save from the windows in the castle walls is there an available exit The castle is a veritable prison and I am a prisoner! CHAPTER 3 Jonathan Harker's Journal Continued When I found that I was a prisoner a sort of wild feeling came over me I rushed up and down the stairs trying every door and peering out of every window I could find but after a little the conviction of my helplessness overpowered all other feelings When I look back after a few hours I think I must have been mad for the time for I behaved much as a rat does in a trap When however the conviction had come to me that I was helpless I sat down quietly as quietly as I have ever done anything in my life and began to think over what was best to be done I am thinking still and as yet have come to no definite conclusion Of one thing only am I certain That it is no use making my ideas known to the Count He knows well that I am imprisoned and as he has done it himself and has doubtless his own motives for it he would only deceive me if I trusted him fully with the facts So far as I can see my only plan will be to keep my knowledge and my fears to myself and my eyes open I am I know either being deceived like a baby by my own fears or else I am in desperate straits and if the latter be so I need and shall need all my brains to get through I had hardly come to this conclusion when I heard the great door below shut and knew that the Count had returned He did not come at once into the library so I went cautiously to my own room and found him making the bed This was odd but only confirmed what I had all along thought that there are no servants in the house When later I saw him through the chink of the hinges of the door laying the table in the dining room I was assured of it For if he does himself all these menial offices surely it is proof that there is no one else in the castle it must have been the Count himself who was the driver of the coach that brought me here This is a terrible thought for if so what does it mean that he could control the wolves as he did by only holding up his hand for silence? How was it that all the people at Bistritz and on the coach had some terrible fear for me? What meant the giving of the crucifix of the garlic of the wild rose of the mountain ash? Bless that good good woman who hung the crucifix round my neck! For it is a comfort and a strength to me whenever I touch it It is odd that a thing which I have been taught to regard with disfavour and as idolatrous should in a time of loneliness and trouble be of help Is it that there is something in the essence of the thing itself or that it is a medium a tangible help in conveying memories of sympathy and comfort? Some time if it may be I must examine this matter and try to make up my mind about it In the meantime I must find out all I can about Count Dracula as it may help me to understand Tonight he may talk of himself if I turn the conversation that way I must be very careful however not to awake his suspicion Midnight --I have had a long talk with the Count I asked him a few questions on Transylvania history and he warmed up to the subject wonderfully In his speaking of things and people and especially of
adult	flame till the dying peoples held that in their veins ran the blood of those old witches who expelled from Scythia had mated with the devils in the desert Fools fools! What devil or what witch was ever so great as Attila whose blood is in these veins? He held up his arms Is it a wonder that we were a conquering race that we were proud that when the Magyar the Lombard the Avar the Bulgar or the Turk poured his thousands on our frontiers we drove them back? Is it strange that when Arpad and his legions swept through the Hungarian fatherland he found us here when he reached the frontier that the Honfoglalas was completed there? And when the Hungarian flood swept eastward the Szekelys were claimed as kindred by the victorious Magyars and to us for centuries was trusted the guarding of the frontier of Turkeyland Aye and more than that endless duty of the frontier guard for as the Turks say 'water sleeps and the enemy is sleepless ' Who more gladly than we throughout the Four Nations received the 'bloody sword ' or at its warlike call flocked quicker to the standard of the King? When was redeemed that great shame of my nation the shame of Cassova when the flags of the Wallach and the Magyar went down beneath the Crescent? Who was it but one of my own race who as Voivode crossed the Danube and beat the Turk on his own ground? This was a Dracula indeed! Woe was it that his own unworthy brother when he had fallen sold his people to the Turk and brought the shame of slavery on them! Was it not this Dracula indeed who inspired that other of his race who in a later age again and again brought his forces over the great river into Turkeyland who when he was beaten back came again and again though he had to come alone from the bloody field where his troops were being slaughtered since he knew that he alone could ultimately triumph! They said that he thought only of himself Bah! What good are peasants without a leader? Where ends the war without a brain and heart to conduct it? Again when after the battle of Mohacs we threw off the Hungarian yoke we of the Dracula blood were amongst their leaders for our spirit would not brook that we were not free Ah young sir the Szekelys and the Dracula as their heart's blood their brains and their swords can boast a record that mushroom growths like the Hapsburgs and the Romanoffs can never reach The warlike days are over Blood is too precious a thing in these days of dishonourable peace and the glories of the great races are as a tale that is told It was by this time close on morning and we went to bed (Mem this diary seems horribly like the beginning of the Arabian Nights for everything has to break off at cockcrow or like the ghost of Hamlet's father ) 12 May --Let me begin with facts bare meager facts verified by books and figures and of which there can be no doubt I must not confuse them with experiences which will have to rest on my own observation or my memory of them Last evening when the Count came from his room he began by asking me questions on legal matters and on the doing of certain kinds of business I had spent the day wearily over books and simply to keep my mind occupied went over some of the matters I had been examined in at Lincoln's Inn There was a certain method in the Count's inquiries so I shall try to put them down in sequence The knowledge may somehow or some time be useful to me First he asked if a man in England might have two solicitors or more I told him he might have a dozen if he wished but that it would not be wise to have more than one solicitor engaged in one transaction as only one could act at a time and that to change would be certain to militate against his interest He seemed thoroughly to understand and went on to ask if there would be any practical difficulty in having one man to attend say to banking and another to look after shipping in case local help were needed in a place far from the home of the banking solicitor I asked to explain more fully so that I might not by any chance mislead him so he said I shall illustrate Your friend and mine Mr Peter Hawkins from under the shadow of your beautiful cathedral at Exeter which is far from London buys for me through your good self my place at London Good! Now here let me say frankly lest you should think it strange that I have sought the services of one so far off from London instead of some one resident there that my motive was that no local interest might be served save my wish only and as one of London residence might perhaps have some purpose of himself or friend to serve I went thus afield to seek my agent whose labours should be only to my interest Now suppose I who have much of affairs wish to ship goods say to Newcastle or Durham or Harwich or Dover might it not be that it could with more ease be done by consigning to one in these ports? I answered that certainly it would be most easy but that we solicitors had a system of agency one for the other so that local work could be done locally on instruction from any solicitor so that the client simply placing himself in the hands of one man could have his wishes carried out by him without further trouble But said he I could be at liberty to direct myself Is it not so? Of course I replied and Such is often done by men of business who do not like the whole of their affairs to be known by any one person Good! he said and then went on to ask about the means of making consignments and the forms to be gone through and of all sorts of difficulties which might arise but by forethought could be guarded against I explained all these things to him to the best of my
adult	I desire it much nay I will take no refusal When your master employer what you will engaged that someone should come on his behalf it was understood that my needs only were to be consulted I have not stinted Is it not so? What could I do but bow acceptance? It was Mr Hawkins' interest not mine and I had to think of him not myself and besides while Count Dracula was speaking there was that in his eyes and in his bearing which made me remember that I was a prisoner and that if I wished it I could have no choice The Count saw his victory in my bow and his mastery in the trouble of my face for he began at once to use them but in his own smooth resistless way I pray you my good young friend that you will not discourse of things other than business in your letters It will doubtless please your friends to know that you are well and that you look forward to getting home to them Is it not so? As he spoke he handed me three sheets of note paper and three envelopes They were all of the thinnest foreign post and looking at them then at him and noticing his quiet smile with the sharp canine teeth lying over the red underlip I understood as well as if he had spoken that I should be more careful what I wrote for he would be able to read it So I determined to write only formal notes now but to write fully to Mr Hawkins in secret and also to Mina for to her I could write shorthand which would puzzle the Count if he did see it When I had written my two letters I sat quiet reading a book whilst the Count wrote several notes referring as he wrote them to some books on his table Then he took up my two and placed them with his own and put by his writing materials after which the instant the door had closed behind him I leaned over and looked at the letters which were face down on the table I felt no compunction in doing so for under the circumstances I felt that I should protect myself in every way I could One of the letters was directed to Samuel F Billington No 7 The Crescent Whitby another to Herr Leutner Varna The third was to Coutts & Co London and the fourth to Herren Klopstock & Billreuth bankers Buda Pesth The second and fourth were unsealed I was just about to look at them when I saw the door handle move I sank back in my seat having just had time to resume my book before the Count holding still another letter in his hand entered the room He took up the letters on the table and stamped them carefully and then turning to me said I trust you will forgive me but I have much work to do in private this evening You will I hope find all things as you wish At the door he turned and after a moment's pause said Let me advise you my dear young friend Nay let me warn you with all seriousness that should you leave these rooms you will not by any chance go to sleep in any other part of the castle It is old and has many memories and there are bad dreams for those who sleep unwisely Be warned! Should sleep now or ever overcome you or be like to do then haste to your own chamber or to these rooms for your rest will then be safe But if you be not careful in this respect then He finished his speech in a gruesome way for he motioned with his hands as if he were washing them I quite understood My only doubt was as to whether any dream could be more terrible than the unnatural horrible net of gloom and mystery which seemed closing around me Later --I endorse the last words written but this time there is no doubt in question I shall not fear to sleep in any place where he is not I have placed the crucifix over the head of my bed I imagine that my rest is thus freer from dreams and there it shall remain When he left me I went to my room After a little while not hearing any sound I came out and went up the stone stair to where I could look out towards the South There was some sense of freedom in the vast expanse inaccessible though it was to me as compared with the narrow darkness of the courtyard Looking out on this I felt that I was indeed in prison and I seemed to want a breath of fresh air though it were of the night I am beginning to feel this nocturnal existence tell on me It is destroying my nerve I start at my own shadow and am full of all sorts of horrible imaginings God knows that there is ground for my terrible fear in this accursed place! I looked out over the beautiful expanse bathed in soft yellow moonlight till it was almost as light as day In the soft light the distant hills became melted and the shadows in the valleys and gorges of velvety blackness The mere beauty seemed to cheer me There was peace and comfort in every breath I drew As I leaned from the window my eye was caught by something moving a storey below me and somewhat to my left where I imagined from the order of the rooms that the windows of the Count's own room would look out The window at which I stood was tall and deep stone-mullioned and though weatherworn was still complete But it was evidently many a day since the case had been there I drew back behind the stonework and looked carefully out What I saw was the Count's head coming out from the window I did not see the face but I knew the man by the neck and the movement of his back and arms In any case I could not mistake the hands which I had had some many opportunities of studying I was at first interested and somewhat amused for it is wonderful how small a matter will interest and amuse a man when he is a prisoner But my very feelings changed to repulsion and terror when I saw the whole man slowly emerge from the window and begin to crawl down the castle wall over the dreadful abyss face down with his cloak spreading out around him like great wings At first I could not believe my eyes I thought it was some trick of the moonlight some weird effect of shadow but I kept looking and it could be no delusion I saw the fingers and toes
adult	originally I found I could pull back the bolts easily enough and unhook the great chains But the door was locked and the key was gone! That key must be in the Count's room I must watch should his door be unlocked so that I may get it and escape I went on to make a thorough examination of the various stairs and passages and to try the doors that opened from them One or two small rooms near the hall were open but there was nothing to see in them except old furniture dusty with age and moth-eaten At last however I found one door at the top of the stairway which though it seemed locked gave a little under pressure I tried it harder and found that it was not really locked but that the resistance came from the fact that the hinges had fallen somewhat and the heavy door rested on the floor Here was an opportunity which I might not have again so I exerted myself and with many efforts forced it back so that I could enter I was now in a wing of the castle further to the right than the rooms I knew and a storey lower down From the windows I could see that the suite of rooms lay along to the south of the castle the windows of the end room looking out both west and south On the latter side as well as to the former there was a great precipice The castle was built on the corner of a great rock so that on three sides it was quite impregnable and great windows were placed here where sling or bow or culverin could not reach and consequently light and comfort impossible to a position which had to be guarded were secured To the west was a great valley and then rising far away great jagged mountain fastnesses rising peak on peak the sheer rock studded with mountain ash and thorn whose roots clung in cracks and crevices and crannies of the stone This was evidently the portion of the castle occupied by the ladies in bygone days for the furniture had more an air of comfort than any I had seen The windows were curtainless and the yellow moonlight flooding in through the diamond panes enabled one to see even colours whilst it softened the wealth of dust which lay over all and disguised in some measure the ravages of time and moth My lamp seemed to be of little effect in the brilliant moonlight but I was glad to have it with me for there was a dread loneliness in the place which chilled my heart and made my nerves tremble Still it was better than living alone in the rooms which I had come to hate from the presence of the Count and after trying a little to school my nerves I found a soft quietude come over me Here I am sitting at a little oak table where in old times possibly some fair lady sat to pen with much thought and many blushes her ill-spelt love letter and writing in my diary in shorthand all that has happened since I closed it last It is the nineteenth century up-to-date with a vengeance And yet unless my senses deceive me the old centuries had and have powers of their own which mere modernity cannot kill Later: The morning of 16 May --God preserve my sanity for to this I am reduced Safety and the assurance of safety are things of the past Whilst I live on here there is but one thing to hope for that I may not go mad if indeed I be not mad already If I be sane then surely it is maddening to think that of all the foul things that lurk in this hateful place the Count is the least dreadful to me that to him alone I can look for safety even though this be only whilst I can serve his purpose Great God! Merciful God let me be calm for out of that way lies madness indeed I begin to get new lights on certain things which have puzzled me Up to now I never quite knew what Shakespeare meant when he made Hamlet say My tablets! Quick my tablets! 'tis meet that I put it down etc For now feeling as though my own brain were unhinged or as if the shock had come which must end in its undoing I turn to my diary for repose The habit of entering accurately must help to soothe me The Count's mysterious warning frightened me at the time It frightens me more not when I think of it for in the future he has a fearful hold upon me I shall fear to doubt what he may say! When I had written in my diary and had fortunately replaced the book and pen in my pocket I felt sleepy The Count's warning came into my mind but I took pleasure in disobeying it The sense of sleep was upon me and with it the obstinacy which sleep brings as outrider The soft moonlight soothed and the wide expanse without gave a sense of freedom which refreshed me I determined not to return tonight to the gloom-haunted rooms but to sleep here where of old ladies had sat and sung and lived sweet lives whilst their gentle breasts were sad for their menfolk away in the midst of remorseless wars I drew a great couch out of its place near the corner so that as I lay I could look at the lovely view to east and south and unthinking of and uncaring for the dust composed myself for sleep I suppose I must have fallen asleep I hope so but I fear for all that followed was startlingly real so real that now sitting here in the broad full sunlight of the morning I cannot in the least believe that it was all sleep I was not alone The room was the same unchanged in any way since I came into it I could see along the floor in the brilliant moonlight my own footsteps marked where I had disturbed the long accumulation of dust In the moonlight opposite me were three young women ladies by their dress and manner I thought at the time that I must be dreaming when I saw them they threw no shadow on the floor They came close to me and looked at me for some time and then whispered together Two were dark and had high aquiline noses like the Count and great dark piercing eyes that seemed to be almost red when contrasted with the pale yellow moon The other was fair as fair as can be with great masses of golden hair and eyes like pale sapphires I seemed somehow to know her face and to know it in connection with some dreamy fear but I could not recollect at the moment how or where All three had brilliant white teeth that shone like pearls against the ruby of their voluptuous lips There was
adult	her voice but with a bitter underlying the sweet a bitter offensiveness as one smells in blood I was afraid to raise my eyelids but looked out and saw perfectly under the lashes The girl went on her knees and bent over me simply gloating There was a deliberate voluptuousness which was both thrilling and repulsive and as she arched her neck she actually licked her lips like an animal till I could see in the moonlight the moisture shining on the scarlet lips and on the red tongue as it lapped the white sharp teeth Lower and lower went her head as the lips went below the range of my mouth and chin and seemed to fasten on my throat Then she paused and I could hear the churning sound of her tongue as it licked her teeth and lips and I could feel the hot breath on my neck Then the skin of my throat began to tingle as one's flesh does when the hand that is to tickle it approaches nearer nearer I could feel the soft shivering touch of the lips on the super sensitive skin of my throat and the hard dents of two sharp teeth just touching and pausing there I closed my eyes in languorous ecstasy and waited waited with beating heart But at that instant another sensation swept through me as quick as lightning I was conscious of the presence of the Count and of his being as if lapped in a storm of fury As my eyes opened involuntarily I saw his strong hand grasp the slender neck of the fair woman and with giant's power draw it back the blue eyes transformed with fury the white teeth champing with rage and the fair cheeks blazing red with passion But the Count! Never did I imagine such wrath and fury even to the demons of the pit His eyes were positively blazing The red light in them was lurid as if the flames of hell fire blazed behind them His face was deathly pale and the lines of it were hard like drawn wires The thick eyebrows that met over the nose now seemed like a heaving bar of white-hot metal With a fierce sweep of his arm he hurled the woman from him and then motioned to the others as though he were beating them back It was the same imperious gesture that I had seen used to the wolves In a voice which though low and almost in a whisper seemed to cut through the air and then ring in the room he said How dare you touch him any of you? How dare you cast eyes on him when I had forbidden it? Back I tell you all! This man belongs to me! Beware how you meddle with him or you'll have to deal with me The fair girl with a laugh of ribald coquetry turned to answer him You yourself never loved You never love! On this the other women joined and such a mirthless hard soulless laughter rang through the room that it almost made me faint to hear It seemed like the pleasure of fiends Then the Count turned after looking at my face attentively and said in a soft whisper Yes I too can love You yourselves can tell it from the past Is it not so? Well now I promise you that when I am done with him you shall kiss him at your will Now go! Go! I must awaken him for there is work to be done Are we to have nothing tonight? said one of them with a low laugh as she pointed to the bag which he had thrown upon the floor and which moved as though there were some living thing within it For answer he nodded his head One of the women jumped forward and opened it If my ears did not deceive me there was a gasp and a low wail as of a half smothered child The women closed round whilst I was aghast with horror But as I looked they disappeared and with them the dreadful bag There was no door near them and they could not have passed me without my noticing They simply seemed to fade into the rays of the moonlight and pass out through the window for I could see outside the dim shadowy forms for a moment before they entirely faded away Then the horror overcame me and I sank down unconscious CHAPTER 4 Jonathan Harker's Journal Continued I awoke in my own bed If it be that I had not dreamt the Count must have carried me here I tried to satisfy myself on the subject but could not arrive at any unquestionable result To be sure there were certain small evidences such as that my clothes were folded and laid by in a manner which was not my habit My watch was still unwound and I am rigorously accustomed to wind it the last thing before going to bed and many such details But these things are no proof for they may have been evidences that my mind was not as usual and for some cause or another I had certainly been much upset I must watch for proof Of one thing I am glad If it was that the Count carried me here and undressed me he must have been hurried in his task for my pockets are intact I am sure this diary would have been a mystery to him which he would not have brooked He would have taken or destroyed it As I look round this room although it has been to me so full of fear it is now a sort of sanctuary for nothing can be more dreadful than those awful women who were who are waiting to suck my blood 18 May --I have been down to look at that room again in daylight for I must know the truth When I got to the doorway at the top of the stairs I found it closed It had been so forcibly driven against the jamb that part of the woodwork was splintered I could see that the
adult	an autumn fig near an apple of the Hesperides And what? And I repeat to thee that from the moment when I saw how the sun-rays at that fountain passed through her body I fell in love to distraction She is as transparent as a lamprey eel then or a youthful sardine? Jest not Petronius; but if the freedom with which I speak of my desire misleads thee know this --that bright garments frequently cover deep wounds I must tell thee too that while returning from Asia I slept one night in the temple of Mopsus to have a prophetic dream Well Mopsus appeared in a dream to me and declared that through love a great change in my life would take place Pliny declares as I hear that he does not believe in the gods but he believes in dreams; and perhaps he is right My jests do not prevent me from thinking at times that in truth there is only one deity eternal creative all-powerful Venus Genetrix She brings souls together; she unites bodies and things Eros called the world out of chaos Whether he did well is another question; but since he did so we should recognize his might though we are free not to bless it Alas! Petronius it is easier to find philosophy in the world than wise counsel Tell me what is thy wish specially? I wish to have Lygia I wish that these arms of mine which now embrace only air might embrace Lygia and press her to my bosom I wish to breathe with her breath Were she a slave I would give Aulus for her one hundred maidens with feet whitened with lime as a sign that they were exhibited on sale for the first time I wish to have her in my house till my head is as white as the top of Soracte in winter She is not a slave but she belongs to the 'family' of Plautius; and since she is a deserted maiden she may be considered an 'alumna ' Plautius might yield her to thee if he wished Then it seems that thou knowest not Pomponia Grcina Both have become as much attached to her as if she were their own daughter Pomponia I know --a real cypress If she were not the wife of Aulus she might be engaged as a mourner Since the death of Julius she has not thrown aside dark robes; and in general she looks as if while still alive she were walking on the asphodel meadow She is moreover a 'one-man woman'; hence among our ladies of four and five divorces she is straighrway a phoenix But! hast thou heard that in Upper Egypt the phoenix has just been hatched out as 'tis said?--an event which happens not oftener than once in five centuries Petronius! Petronius! Let us talk of the phoenix some other time What shall I tell thee my Marcus? I know Aulus Plautius who though he blames my mode of life has for me a certain weakness and even respects me perhaps more than others for he knows that I have never been an informer like Domitius Afer Tigellinus and a whole rabble of Ahenobarbus's intimates [Nero's name was originally L Domitius Ahenobarbus] Without pretending to be a stoic I have been offended more than once at acts of Nero which Seneca and Burrus looked at through their fingers If it isthy thought that I might do something for thee with Aulus I am at thy command I judge that thou hast the power Thou hast influence over him; and besides thy mind possesses inexhaustible resources If thou wert to survey the position and speak with Plautius Thou hast too great an idea of my influence and wit; but if that is the only question I will talk with Plautius as soon as they return to the city They returned two days since In that case let us go to the triclinium where a meal is now ready and when we have refreshed ourselves let us give command to bear us to Plautius Thou hast ever been kind to me answered Vinicius with vivacity; but now I shall give command to rear thy statue among my lares --just such a beauty as this one --and I will place offerings before it Then he turned toward the statues which ornamented one entire wall of the perfumed chamber and pointing to the one which represented Petronius as Hermes with a staff in his hand he added -- By the light of Helios! if the 'godlike' Alexander resembled thee I do not wonder at Helen And in that exclamation there was as much sincerity as flattery; for Petronius though older and less athletic was more beautiful than even Vinicius The women of Rome admired not only his pliant mind and his taste which gained for him the title Arbiter eleganti but also his body This admiration was evident even on the faces of those maidens from Kos who were arranging the folds of his toga; and one of whom whose name was Eunice loving him in secret looked him in the eyes with submission and rapture But he did not even notice this; and smiling at Vinicius he quoted in answer an expression of Seneca about woman -- Animal impudens etc And then placing an arm on the shoulders of his nephew he conducted him to the triclinium
adult	pressed her lips with ecstasy to the cold lips of Petronius Chapter II After a refreshment which was called the morning meal and to which the two friends sat down at an hour when common mortals were abeady long past their midday prandium Petronius proposed a light doze According to him it was too early for visits yet There are it is true said he people who begin to visit their acquaintances about sunrise thinking that custom an old Roman one but I look on this as barbarous The afternoon hours are most proper --not earlier however than that one when the sun passes to the side of Jove's temple on the Capitol and begins to look slantwise on the Forum In autumn it is still hot and people are glad to sleep after eating At the same time it is pleasant to hear the noise of the fountain in the atrium and after the obligatory thousand steps to doze in the red light which filters in through the purple half-drawn velarium Vinicius recognized the justice of these words; and the two men began to walk speaking in a careless manner of what was to be heard on the Palatine and in the city and philosophizing a little upon life Petronius withdrew then to the cubiculum but did not sleep long In half an hour he came out and having given command to bring verbena he inhaled the perfume and rubbed his hands and temples with it Thou wilt not believe said he how it enlivens and freshens one Now I am ready The litter was waiting long since; hence they took their places and Petronius gave command to bear them to the Vicus Patricius to the house of Aulus Petronius's insula lay on the southern slope of the Palatine near the so-called Carin; their nearest way therefore was below the Forum; but since Petronius wished to step in on the way to see the jeweller Idomeneus he gave the direction to carry them along the Vicus Apollinis and the Forum in the direction of the Vicus Sceleratus on the corner of which were many tabern of every kind Gigantic Africans bore the litter and moved on preceded by slaves called pedisequii Petronius after some time raised to his nostrils in silence his palm odorous with verbena and seemed to be meditating on something It occurs to me said he after a while that if thy forest goddess is not a slave she might leave the house of Plautius and transfer herself to thine Thou wouldst surround her with love and cover her with wealth as I do my adored Chrysothemis of whom speaking between us I have quite as nearly enough as she has of me Marcus shook his head No? inquired Petronius In the worst event the case would be left with Csar and thou mayst be certain that thanks even to my influence our Bronzebeard would be on thy side Thou knowest not Lygia replied Vinicius Then permit me to ask if thou know her otherwise than by sight? Hast spoken with her? hast confessed thy love to her? I saw her first at the fountain; since then I have met her twice Remember that during my stay in the house of Aulus I dwelt in a separate villa intended for guests and having a disjointed arm I could not sit at the common table Only on the eve of the day for which I announced my departure did I meet Lygia at supper but I could not say a word to her I had to listen to Aulus and his account of victories gained by him in Britain and then of the fall of small states in Italy which Licinius Stolo strove to prevent In general I do not know whether Aulus will be able to speak of aught else and do not think that we shall escape this history unless it be thy wish to hear about the effeminacy of these days They have pheasants in their preserves but they do not eat them setting out from the principle that every pheasant eaten brings nearer the end of Roman power I met her a second time at the garden cistern with a freshly plucked reed in her hand the top of which she dipped in the water and sprinkled the irises growing around Look at my knees By the shield of Hercules I tell thee that they did not tremble when clouds of Parthians advanced on our maniples with howls but they trembled before the cistern And confused as a youth who still wears a bulla on his neck I merely begged pity with my eyes not being able to utter a word for a long time Petronius looked at him as if with a certain envy Happy man said he though the world and life were the worst possible one thing in them will remain eternally good --youth! After a while he inquired: And hast thou not spoken to her? When I had recovered somewhat I told her that I was returning from Asia that I had disjointed my arm near the city and had suffered severely but at the moment of leaving that hospitable house I saw that suffering in it was more to be wished for than delight in another place that sickness there was better than health somewhere else Confused too on her part she listened to my words with bent head while drawing something with the reed on the saffron-colored sand Afterward she raised her eyes then looked down at the marks drawn already; once more she looked at me as if to ask about something and then fled on a sudden like a hamadryad before a dull faun
adult	various secrets of life? How couldst thou help looking on those marks? It is longer since I have put on the toga than seems to thee said Vinicius and before little Aulus ran up I looked carefully at those marks for I know that frequently maidens in Greece and in Rome draw on the sand a confession which their lips will not utter But guess what she drew! If it is other than I supposed I shall not guess A fish What dost thou say? I say a fish What did that mean --that cold blood is flowing in her veins? So far I do not know; but thou who hast called me a spring bud on the tree of life wilt be able to understand the sign certainly Carissime! ask such a thing of Pliny He knows fish If old Apicius were alive he could tell thee something for in the course of his life he ate more fish than could find place at one time in the bay of Naples Further conversation was interrupted since they were borne into crowded streets where the noise of people hindered them From the Vicus Apollinis they turned to the Boarium and then entered the Forum Romanum where on clear days before sunset crowds of idle people assembled to stroll among the columns to tell and hear news to see noted people borne past in litters and finally to look in at the jewellery-shops the book-shops the arches where coin was changed shops for silk bronze and all other articles with which the buildings covering that part of the market placed opposite the Capitol were filled One-half of the Forum immediately under the rock of the Capitol was buried already in shade; but the columns of the temples placed higher seemed golden in the sunshine and the blue Those lying lower cast lengthened shadows on marble slabs The place was so filled with columns everywhere that the eye was lost in them as in a forest Those buildings and columns seemed huddled together They towered some above others they stretched toward the right and the left they climbed toward the height and they clung to the wall of the Capitol or some of them clung to others like greater and smaller thicker and thinner white or gold colored tree-trunks now blooming under architraves flowers of the acanthus now surrounded with Ionic corners now finished with a simple Doric quadrangle Above that forest gleamed colored triglyphs; from tympans stood forth the sculptured forms of gods; from the summits winged golden quadrig seemed ready to fly away through space into the blue dome fixed serenely above that crowded place of temples Through the middle of the market and along the edges of it flowed a river of people; crowds passed under the arches of the basilica of Julius Csar; crowds were sitting on the steps of Castor and Pollux or walking around the temple of Vesta resembling on that great marble background many-colored swarms of butterflies or beetles Down immense steps from the side of the temple on the Capitol dedicated to Jupiter Optimus Maximus came new waves; at the rostra people listened to chance orators; in one place and another rose the shouts of hawkers selling fruit wine or water mixed with fig-juice; of tricksters; of venders of marvellous medicines; of soothsayers; of discoverers of hidden treasures; of interpreters of dreams Here and there in the tumult of conversations and cries were mingled sounds of the Egyptian sistra of the sambuk or of Grecian flutes Here and there the sick the pious or the afflicted were bearing offerings to the temples In the midst of the people on the stone flags gathered flocks of doves eager for the grain given them and like movable many-colored and dark spots now rising for a moment with a loud sound of wings now dropping down again to places left vacant by people From time to time the crowds opened before litters in which were visible the affected faces of women or the heads of senators and knights with features as it were rigid and exhausted from living The many-tongued population repeated aloud their names with the addition of some term of praise or ridicule Among the unordered groups pushed from time to time advancing with measured tread parties of soldiers or watchers preserving order on the streets Around about the Greek language was heard as often as Latin Vinicius who had not been in the city for a long time looked with a certain curiosity on that swarm of people and on that Forum Romanum which both dominated the sea of the world and was flooded by it so that Petronius who divined the thoughts of his companion called it the nest of the Quirites--without the Quirites In truth the local element was well-nigh lost in that crowd composed of all races and nations There appeared Ethiopians gigantic light-haired people from the distant north Britons Gauls Germans sloping-eyed dwellers of Lericum; people from the Euphrates and from the Indus with beards dyed brick color; Syrians from the banks of the Orontes with black and mild eyes; dwellers in the deserts of Arabia dried up as a bone; Jews with their flat breasts; Egyptians with the eternal indifferent smile on their faces; Numidians and Africans; Greeks from Hellas who equally with the Romans commanded the city but commanded through science art wisdom and deceit; Greeks from the islands from Asia Minor from Egypt from Italy from Narbonic Gaul In the throng of slaves with pierced ears were not lacking also freemen --an idle population which Csar amused supported even clothed --and free visitors whom the ease of life and the prospects of fortune enticed to the gigantic city; there was no lack of venal persons There were priests of Serapis with palm branches in their hands; priests of Isis to whose altar more offerings were brought than to the temple of the Capitoline Jove; priests of Cybele bearing in their hands golden ears of rice; and priests of nomad
adult	indignant because of the slaughter loved Petronius from that moment forth But he did not care for their love He remembered that that crowd of people had loved also Britannicus poisoned by Nero; and Agrippina killed at his command; and Octavia smothered in hot steam at the Pandataria after her veins had been opened previously; and Rubelius Plautus who had been banished; and Thrasea to whom any morning might bring a death sentence The love of the mob might be considered rather of ill omen; and the sceptical Petronius was superstitious also He had a twofold contempt for the multitude --as an aristocrat and an sthetic person Men with the odor of roast beans which they carried in their bosoms and who besides were eternally hoarse and sweating from playing mora on the street-corners and peristyles did not in his eyes deserve the term human Hence he gave no answer whatever to the applause or the kisses sent from lips here and there to him He was relating to Marcus the case of Pedanius reviling meanwhile the fickleness of that rabble which next morning after the terrible butchery applauded Nero on his way to the temple of Jupiter Stator But he gave command to halt before the book-shop of Avirnus and descending from the litter purchased an ornamented manuscript which he gave to Vinicius Here is a gift for thee said he Thanks! answered Vinicius Then looking at the title he inquired 'Satyricon'? Is this something new? Whose is it? Mine But I do not wish to go in the road of Rufinus whose history I was to tell thee nor of Fabricius Veiento; hence no one knows of this and do thou mention it to no man Thou hast said that thou art no writer of verses said Vinicius looking at the middle of tile manuscript; but here I see prose thickly interwoven with them When thou art reading turn attention to Trimalchion's feast As to verses they have disgusted me since Nero is writing an epic Vitelius when he wishes to relieve himself uses ivory fingers to thrust down his throat; others serve themselves with flamingo feathers steeped in olive oil or in a decoction of wild thyme I read Nero's poetry and the result is immediate Straightway I am able to praise it if not with a clear conscience at least with a clear stomach When he had said this he stopped the litter again before the shop of Idomeneus the goldsmith and having settled the affair of the gems gave command to bear the litter directly to Aulus's mansion On the road I will tell thee the story of Rufinus said he as proof of what vanity in an author may be But before he had begun they turned in to the Vicus Patricius and soon found themselves before the dwelling of Aulus A young and sturdy janitor opened the door leading to the ostium over which a magpie confined in a cage greeted them noisily with the word Salve! On the way from the second antechamber called the ostium to the atrium itself Vinicius said -- Hast noticed that thee doorkeepers are without chains? This is a wonderful house answered Petronius in an undertone Of course it is known to thee that Pomponia Grcina is suspected of entertaining that Eastern superstition which consists in honoring a certain Chrestos It seems that Crispinilla rendered her this service --she who cannot forgive Pomponia because one husband has sufficed her for a lifetime A one-man Woman! To-day in Rome it is easier to get a half-plate of fresh mushrooms from Noricum than to find such They tried her before a domestic court-- To thy judgment this is a wonderful house Later on I will tell thee what I heard and saw in it Meanwhile they had entered the atrium The slave appointed to it called atriensis sent a nomenclator to announce the guests; and Petronius who imagining that eternal sadness reigned in this severe house had never been in it looked around with astonishment and as it were with a feeling of disappointment for the atrium produced rather an impression of cheerfulness A sheaf of bright light falling from above through a large opening broke into a thousand sparks on a fountain in a quadrangular little basin called the impluvium which was in the middle to receive rain falling through the opening during bad weather; this was surrounded by anemones and lilies In that house a special love for lilies was evident for there were whole clumps of them both white and red; and finally sapphire irises whose delicate leaves were as if silvered from the spray of the fountain Among the moist mosses in which lily-pots were hidden and among the bunches of lilies were little bronze statues representing children and water-birds In one corner a bronze fawn as if wishing to drink was inclining its greenish head grizzled too by dampness The floor of the atrium was of mosaic; the walls faced partly with red marble and partly with wood on which were painted fish birds and griffins attracted the eye by the play of colors From the door to the side chamber they were ornamented with tortoise-shell or even ivory; at the walls between the doors were statues of Aulus's ancestors Everywhere calm plenty was evident remote from excess but noble and self-trusting Petronius who lived with incomparably greater show and elegance could find nothing which offended his taste; and had just turned to Vinicius with that remark when a slave the velarius pushed aside the curtain separating the atrium from the tablinum and in the depth of the building appeared Aulus Plautius approaching hurriedly He was a man nearing the evening of life with a head whitened by hoar frost but fresh with an energetic face a trifle too short but still somewhat eagle-like This time there was expressed on it a certain
adult	save said Aulus when he had the misfortune to doze while listening to Nero's verses He was fortunate replied Petronius for he did not hear them; but I will not deny that the matter might have ended with misfortune Bronzebeard wished absolutely to send a centurion to him with the friendly advice to open his veins But thou Petronius laughed him out of it That is true or rather it is not true I told Nero that if Orpheus put wild beasts to sleep with song his triumph was equal since he had put Vespasian to sleep Ahenobarbus may be blamed on condition that to a small criticism a great flattery be added Our gracious Augusta Poppa understands this to perfection Alas! such are the times answered Aulus I lack two front teeth knocked out by a stone from the hand of a Briton I speak with a hiss; still my happiest days were passed in Britain Because they were days of victory added Vinicius But Petronius alarmed lest the old general might begin a narrative of his former wars changed the conversation See said he in the neighborhood of Prneste country people found a dead wolf whelp with two heads; and during a storm about that time lightning struck off an angle of the temple of Luna --a thing unparalleled because of the late autumn A certain Cotta too who had told this added while telling it that the priests of that temple prophesied the fall of the city or at least the ruin of a great house --ruin to be averted only by uncommon sacrifices Aulus when he had heard the narrative expressed the opinion that such signs should not be neglected; that the gods might be angered by an over-measure of wickedness In this there was nothing wonderful; and in such an event expiatory sacrifices were perfectly in order Thy house Plautius is not too large answered Petronius though a great man lives in it Mine is indeed too large for such a wretched owner though equally small But if it is a question of the ruin of something as great for example as the domus transitoria would it be worth while for us to bring offerings to avert that ruin? Plautius did not answer that question --a carefulness which touched even Petronius somewhat for with all his inability to feel the difference between good and evil he had never been an informer; and it was possible to talk with him in perfect safety He changed the conversation again therefore and began to praise Plautius's dwelling and the good taste which reigned in the house It is an ancient seat said Plautius in which nothing has been changed since I inherited it After the curtain was pushed aside which divided the atrium from the tablinum the house was open from end to end so that through the tablinum and the following peristyle and the hall lying beyond it which was called the cus the glance extended to the garden which seemed from a distance like a bright image set in a dark frame Joyous childlike laughter came from it to the atrium Oh general! said Petronius permit us to listen from near by to that glad laughter which is of a kind heard so rarely in these days Willingly answered Plautius rising; that is my little Aulus and Lygia playing ball But as to laughter I think Petronius that our whole life is spent in it Life deserves laughter hence people laugh at it answered Petronius but laughter here has another sound Petronius does not laugh for days in succession said Vinicius; but then he laughs entire nights Thus conversing they passed through the length of the house and reached the garden where Lygia and little Aulus were playing with balls which slaves appointed to that game exclusively and called spherist picked up and placed in their hands Petronius cast a quick passing glance at Lygia; little Aulus seeing Vinicius ran to greet him; but the young tribune going forward bent his head before the beautiful maiden who stood with a ball in her hand her hair blown apart a little She was somewhat out of breath and flushed In the garden triclinium shaded by ivy grapes and woodbine sat Pomponia Grcina; hence they went to salute her She was known to Petronius though he did not visit Plautius for he had seen her at the house of Antistia the daughter of Rubelius Plautus and besides at the house of Seneca and Polion He could not resist a certain admiration with which he was filled by her face pensive but mild by the dignity of her bearing by her movements by her words Pomponia disturbed his understanding of women to such a degree that that man corrupted to the marrow of his bones and self-confident as no one in Rome not only felt for her a kind of esteem but even lost his previous self-confidence And now thanking her for her care of Vinicius he thrust in as it were involuntarily domina which never occurred to him when speaking for example to Calvia Crispinilla Scribonia Veleria Solina and other women of high society After he had greeted her and returned thanks he began to complain that he saw her so rarely that it was not possible to meet her either in the Circus or the Amphitheatre; to which she answered calmly laying her hand on the hand of her husband:
adult	though descending from the midday of life had preserved an uncommon freshness of face; and since she had a small head and delicate features she produced at times despite her dark robes despite her solemnity and sadness the impression of a woman quite young Meanwhile little Aulus who had become uncommonly friendly with Vinicius during his former stay in the house approached the young man and entreated him to play ball Lygia herself entered the triclinium after the little boy Under the climbing ivy with the light quivering on her face she seemed to Petronius more beautiful than at the first glance and really like some nymph As he had not spoken to her thus far he rose inclined his head and instead of the usual expressions of greeting quoted the words with which Ulysses greeted Nausikaa -- I supplicate thee O queen whether thou art some goddess or a mortal! If thou art one of the daughters of men who dwell on earth thrice blessed are thy father and thy lady mother and thrice blessed thy brethren The exquisite politeness of this man of the world pleased even Pomponia As to Lygia she listened confused and flushed without boldness to raise her eyes But a wayward smile began to quiver at the corners of her lips and on her face a struggle was evident between the timidity of a maiden and the wish to answer; but clearly the wish was victorious for looking quickly at Petronius she answered him all at once with the words of that same Nausikaa quoting them at one breath and a little like a lesson learned -- Stranger thou seemest no evil man nor foolish Then she turned and ran out as a frightened bird runs This time the turn for astonishment came to Petronius for he had not expected to hear verses of Homer from the lips of a maiden of whose barbarian extraction he had heard previously from Vinicius Hence he looked with an inquiring glance at Pomponia; but she could not give him an answer for she was looking at that moment with a smile at the pride reflected on the face of her husband He was not able to conceal that pride First he had become attached to Lygia as to his own daughter; and second in spite of his old Roman prejudices which commanded him to thunder against Greek and the spread of the language he considered it as the summit of social polish He himself had never been able to learn it well; over this he suffered in secret He was glad therefore that an answer was given in the language and poetry of Homer to this exquisite man both of fashion and letters who was ready to consider Plautius's house as barbarian We have in the house a pedagogue a Greek said he turning to Petronius who teaches our boy and the maiden overhears the lessons She is a wagtail yet but a dear one to which we have both grown attached Petronius looked through the branches of woodbine into the garden and at the three persons who were playing there Vinicius had thrown aside his toga and wearing only his tunic was striking the ball which Lygia standing opposite with raised arms was trying to catch The maiden did not make a great impression on Petronius at the first glance; she seemed to him too slender But from the moment when he saw her more nearly in the triclinium he thought to himself that Aurora might look like her; and as a judge he understood that in her there was something uncommon He considered everything and estimated everything; hence her face rosy and clear her fresh lips as if set for a kiss her eyes blue as the azure of the sea the alabaster whiteness of her forehead the wealth of her dark hair with the reflection of amber or Corinthian bronze gleaming in its folds her slender neck the divine slope of her shoulders the whole posture flexible slender young with the youth of May and of freshly opened flowers The artist was roused in him and the worshipper of beauty who felt that beneath a statue of that maiden one might write Spring All at once he remembered Chrysothemis and pure laughter seized him Chrysothemis seemed to him with golden powder on her hair and darkened brows to be fabulously faded --something in the nature of a yellowed rose-tree shedding its leaves But still Rome envied him that Chrysothemis Then he recalled Poppa; and that most famous Poppa also seemed to him soulless a waxen mask In that maiden with Tanagrian outlines there was not only spring but a radiant soul which shone through her rosy body as a flame through a lamp Vinicius is right thought he and my Chrysothemis is old old!--as Troy! Then he turned to Pomponia Grcina and pointing to the garden said -- I understand now domina why thou and thy husband prefer this house to the Circus and to feasts on the Palatine Yes answered she turning her eyes in the direction of little Aulus and Lygia But the old general began to relate the history of the maiden and what he had heard years before from Atelius Hister about the Lygian people who lived in the gloom of the North The three outside had finished playing ball and for some time had been walking along the sand of the garden appearing against the dark background of myrtles and cypresses like three white statues Lygia held little Aulus by the hand After they had walked a while they sat on a bench near the fish-pond which occupied the middle of the garden After a time Aulus sprang up to frighten the fish in the transparent water but Vinicius continued the conversation begun during the walk
adult	eclipse a man who is famous; a strong man will be conquered by a stronger But can Csar himself can any god even experience greater delight or be happier than a simple mortal at the moment when at his breast there is breathing another dear breast or when he kisses beloved lips? Hence love makes us equal to the gods O Lygia And she listened with alarm with astonishment and at the same time as if she were listening to the sound of a Grecian flute or a cithara It seemed to her at moments that Vinicius was singing a kind of wonderful song which was instilling itself into her ears moving the blood in her and penetrating her heart with a faintness a fear and a kind of uncomprehended delight It seemed to her also that he was telling something which was in her before but of which she could not give account to herself She felt that he was rousing in her something which had been sleeping hitherto and that in that moment a hazy dream was changing into a form more and more definite more pleasing more beautiful Meanwhile the sun had passed the Tiber long since and had sunk low over the Janiculum On the motionless cypresses ruddy light was falling and the whole atmosphere was filled with it Lygia raised on Vinicius her blue eyes as if roused from sleep; and he bending over her with a prayer quivering in his eyes seemed on a sudden in the reflections of evening more beautiful than all men than all Greek and Roman gods whose statues she had seen on the faades of temples And with his fingers he clasped her arm lightly just above the wrist and asked -- Dost thou not divine what I say to thee Lygia? No whispered she as answer in a voice so low that Vinicius barely heard it But he did not believe her and drawing her hand toward him more vigorously he would have drawn it to his heart which under the influence of desire roused by the marvellous maiden was beating like a hammer and would have addressed burning words to her directly had not old Aulus appeared on a path set in a frame of myrtles who said while approaching them -- The sun is setting; so beware of the evening coolness and do not trifle with Libitina No answered Vinicius; I have not put on my toga yet and I do not feel the cold But see barely half the sun's shield is looking from behind the hill That is a sweet climate of Sicily where people gather on the square before sunset and take farewell of disappearing Phbus with a choral song And forgetting that a moment earlier he had warned them against Libitina he began to tell about Sicily where he had estates and large cultivated fields which he loved He stated also that it had come to his mind more than once to remove to Sicily and live out his life there in quietness He whose head winters have whitened has bad enough of hoar frost Leaves are not falling from the trees yet and the sky smiles on the city lovingly; but when the grapevines grow yellow-leaved when snow falls on the Alban hills and the gods visit the Campania with piercing wind who knows but I may remove with my entire household to my quiet country-seat? Wouldst thou leave Rome? inquired Vinicius with sudden alarm I have wished to do so this long time for it is quieter in Sicily and safer And again he fell to praising his gardens his herds his house hidden in green and the hills grown over with thyme and savory among which were swarms of buzzing bees But Vinicius paid no heed to that bucolic note; and from thinking only of this that he might lose Lygia he looked toward Petronius as if expecting salvation from him alone Meanwhile Petronius sitting near Pomponia was admiring the view of the setting sun the garden and the people standing near the fish-pond Their white garments on the dark background of the myrtles gleamed like gold from the evening rays On the sky the evening light had begun to assume purple and violet hues and to change like an opal A strip of the sky became lily-colored The dark silhouettes of the cypresses grew still more pronounced than during bright daylight In the people in the trees in the whole garden there reigned an evening calm That calm struck Petronius and it struck him especially in the people In the faces of Pomponia old Aulus their son and Lygia there was something such as he did not see in the faces which surrounded him every day or rather every night There was a certain light a certain repose a certain serenity flowing directly from the life which all lived there And with a species of astonishment he thought that a beauty and sweetness might exist which he who chased after beauty and sweetness continually had not known He could not hide the thought in himself and said turning to Pomponia -- I am considering in my soul how different this world of yours is from the world which our Nero rules She raised her delicate face toward the evening light and said with simplicity -- Not Nero but God rules the world A moment of silence followed Near the triclinium were heard in the alley the steps of the old general Vinicius Lygia and little Aulus; but before they arrived Petronius had put another question-- But believest thou in the gods then Pomponia? I believe in God who is one just and all-powerful answered the wife of Aulus Plautius
adult	would have made as much noise as a bronze shield under the blow of a club And I did not dare to tell! Wilt thou believe Vinicius I did not dare! Peacocks are beautiful birds but they have too shrill a cry I feared an outburst But I must praise thy choice A real 'rosy-fingered Aurora ' And knowest thou what she reminded me of too?--Spring! not our spring in Italy where an apple-tree merely puts forth a blossom here and there and olive groves grow gray just as they were gray before but the spring which I saw once in Helvetia --young fresh bright green By that pale moon I do not wonder at thee Marcus; but know that thou art loving Diana because Aulus and Pomponia are ready to tear thee to pieces as the dogs once tore Acton Vinicius was silent a time without raising his head; then he began to speak with a voice broken by passion -- I desired her before but now I desire her still more When I caught her arm flame embraced me I must have her Were I Zeus I would surround her with a cloud as he surrounded Io or I would fall on her in rain as he fell on Dana; I would kiss her lips till it pained! I would hear her scream in my arms I would kill Aulus and Pomponia and bear her home in my arms I will not sleep to-night I will give command to flog one of my slaves and listen to his groans-- Calm thyself said Petronius Thou hast the longing of a carpenter from the Subura All one to me what thou sayst I must have her I have turned to thee for aid; but if thou wilt not find it I shall find it myself Aulus considers Lygia as a daughter; why should I look on her as a slave? And since there is no other way let her ornament the door of my house let her anoint it with wolf's fat and let her sit at my hearth as wife Calm thyself mad descendant of consuls We do not lead in barbarians bound behind our cars to make wives of their daughters Beware of extremes Exhaust simple honorable methods and give thyself and me time for meditation Chrysothemis seemed to me too a daughter of Jove and still I did not marry her just as Nero did not marry Acte though they called her a daughter of King Attalus Calm thyself! Think that if she wishes to leave Aulus for thee he will have no right to detain her Know also that thou art not burning alone for Eros has roused in her the flame too I saw that and it is well to believe me Have patience There is a way to do everything but to-day I have thought too much already and it tires me But I promise that to-morrow I will think of thy love and unless Petronius is not Petronius he will discover some method They were both silent again I thank thee said Vinicius at last May Fortune be bountiful to thee Be patient Whither hast thou given command to bear us? To Chrysothemis Thou art happy in possessing her whom thou lovest I? Dost thou know what amuses me yet in Chrysothemis? This that she is false to me with my freedman Theokles and thinks that I do not notice it Once I loved her but now she amuses me with her lying and stupidity Come with me to her Should she begin to flirt with thee and write letters on the table with her fingers steeped in wine know that I shall not be jealous And he gave command to bear them both to Chrysothemis But in the entrance Petronius put his hand on Vinicius's shoulder and said -- Wait; it seems to me that I have discovered a plan May all the gods reward thee! I have it! I judge that this plan is infallible Knowest what Marcus? I listen to thee my wisdom Well in a few days the divine Lygia will partake of Demeter's grain in thy house Thou art greater than Csar! exclaimed Vinicius with enthusiasm Chapter IV IN fact Petronius kept his promise He slept all the day following his visit to Chrysothemis it is true; but in the evening he gave command to bear him to the Palatine where he had a confidential conversation with Nero; in consequence of this on the third day a centurion at the head of some tens of pretorian soldiers appeared before the house of Plautius The period was uncertain and terrible Messengers of this kind were more frequently heralds of death So when the centurion struck the hammer at Aulus's door and when the guard of the atrium announced that there were soldiers in the anteroom terror rose through the whole house The family surrounded the old general at once for no one
adult	for some dear one alone can give Aulus passed out to the atrium where the centurion was waiting for him It was old Caius Hasta his former subordinate and companion in British wars I greet thee general said he I bring a command and the greeting of Csar; here are the tablets and the signet to show that I come in his name I am thankful to Csar for the greeting and I shall obey the command answered Aulus Be welcome Hasta and say what command thou hast brought Aulus Plautius began Hasta Csar has learned that in thy house is dwelling the daughter of the king of the Lygians whom that king during the life of the divine Claudius gave into the hands of the Romans as a pledge that the boundaries of the empire would never be violated by the Lygians The divine Nero is grateful to thee O general because thou hast given her hospitality in thy house for so many years; but not wishing to burden thee longer and considering also that the maiden as a hostage should be under the guardianship of Csar and the senate he commands thee to give her into my hands Aulus was too much a soldier and too much a veteran to permit himself regret in view of an order or vain words or complaint A slight wrinkle of sudden anger and pain however appeared on his forehead Before that frown legions in Britain had trembled on a time and even at that moment fear was evident on the face of Hasta But in view of the order Aulus Plautius felt defenceless He looked for some time at the tablets and the signet; then raising his eyes to the old centurion he said calmly -- Wait Hasta in the atrium till the hostage is delivered to thee After these words he passed to the other end of the house to the hall called cus where Pomponia Grcina Lygia and little Aulus were waiting for him in fear and alarm Death threatens no one nor banishment to distant islands said he; still Csar's messenger is a herald of misfortune It is a question of thee Lygia Of Lygia? exclaimed Pomponia with astonishment Yes answered Aulus And turning to the maiden he began: Lygia thou wert reared in our house as our own child; I and Pomponia love thee as our daughter But know this that thou art not our daughter Thou art a hostage given by thy people to Rome and guardianship over thee belongs to Csar Now Csar takes thee from our house The general spoke calmly but with a certain strange unusual voice Lygia listened to his words blinking as if not understanding what the question was Pomponia's cheeks became pallid In the doors leading from the corridor to the cus terrified faces of slaves began to show themselves a second time The will of Csar must be accomplished said Aulus Aulus! exclaimed Pomponia embracing the maiden with her arms as if wishing to defend her it would be better for her to die Lygia nestling up to her breast repeated Mother mother! unable in her sobbing to find other words On Aulus's face anger and pain were reflected again If I were alone in the world said he gloomily I would not surrender her alive and my relatives might give offerings this day to 'Jupiter Liberator ' But I have not the right to kill thee and our child who may live to happier times I will go to Csar this day and implore him to change his command Whether he will hear me I know not Meanwhile farewell Lygia and know that I and Pomponia ever bless the day in which thou didst take thy seat at our hearth Thus speaking he placed his hand on her head; but though he strove to preserve his calmness when Lygia turned to him eyes filled with tears and seizing his hand pressed it to her lips his voice was filled with deep fatherly sorrow Farewell our joy and the light of our eyes said he And he went to the atrium quickly so as not to let himself be conquered by emotion unworthy of a Roman and a general Meanwhile Pomponia when she had conducted Lygia to the cubiculum began to comfort console and encourage her uttering words meanwhile which sounded strangely in that house where near them in an adjoining chamber the lararium remained yet and where the hearth was on which Aulus Plautius faithful to ancient usage made offerings to the household divinities Now the hour of trial had come On a time Virginius had pierced the bosom of his own daughter to save her from the hands of Appius; still earlier Lucretia had redeemed her shame with her life The house of Csar is a den of infamy of evil of crime But we Lygia know why we have not the right to raise hands on ourselves! Yes! The law under which we both live is another a greater a holier but it gives permission to defend oneself from evil and shame even should it happen to pay for that defence with life and torment Whoso goes forth pure from the dwelling of corruption has the greater merit thereby The earth is that dwelling; but fortunately life is one twinkle of the eye
adult	dropped to her knees after a while and covering her eyes in the folds of Pomponia's peplus she remained thus a long time in silence; but when she stood up again some calmness was evident on her face I grieve for thee mother and for father and for my brother; but I know that resistance is useless and would destroy all of us I promise thee that in the house of Csar I will never forget thy words Once more she threw her arms around Pomponia's neck; then both went out to the cus and she took farewell of little Aulus of the old Greek their teacher of the dressing-maid who had been her nurse and of all the slaves One of these a tall and broad-shouldered Lygian called Ursus in the house who with other servants had in his time gone with Lygia's mother and her to the camp of the Romans fell now at her feet and then bent down to the knees of Pomponia saying -- O domina! permit me to go with my lady to serve her and watch over her in the house of Csar Thou art not our servant but Lygia's answered Pomponia; but if they admit thee through Csar's doors in what way wilt thou be able to watch over her? I know not domina; I know only that iron breaks in my hands just as wood does When Aulus who came up at that moment had heard what the question was not only did he not oppose the wishes of Ursus but he declared that he had not even the right to detain him They were sending away Lygia as a hostage whom Csar had claimed and they were obliged in the same way to send her retinue which passed with her to the control of Csar Here he whispered to Pomponia that under the form of an escort she could add as many slaves as she thought proper for the centurion could not refuse to receive them There was a certain comfort for Lygia in this Pomponia also was glad that she could surround her with servants of her own choice Therefore besides Ursus she appointed to her the old tire-woman two maidens from Cyprus well skilled in hair-dressing and two German maidens for the bath Her choice fell exclusively on adherents of the new faith; Ursus too had professed it for a number of years Pomponia could count on the faithfulness of those servants and at the same time consoled herself with the thought that soon grains of truth would be in Csar's house She wrote a few words also committing care over Lygia to Nero's freedwoman Acte Pomponia had not seen her it is true at meetings of confessors of the new faith; but she had heard from them that Acte had never refused them a service and that she read the letters of Paul of Tarsus eagerly It was known to her also that the young freedwoman lived in melancholy that she was a person different from all other women of Nero's house and that in general she was the good spirit of the palace Hasta engaged to deliver the letter himself to Acte Considering it natural that the daughter of a king should have a retinue of her own servants he did not raise the least difficulty in taking them to the palace but wondered rather that there should be so few He begged haste however fearing lest he might be suspected of want of zeal in carrying out orders The moment of parting came The eyes of Pomponia and Lygia were filled with fresh tears; Aulus placed his hand on her head again and after a while the soldiers followed by the cry of little Aulus who in defence of his sister threatened the centurion with his small fists conducted Lygia to Csar's house The old general gave command to prepare his litter at once; meanwhile shutting himself up with Pomponia in the pinacotheca adjoining the cus he said to her -- Listen to me Pomponia I will go to Csar though I judge that my visit will be useless; and though Seneca's word means nothing with Nero now I will go also to Seneca To-day Sophonius Tigellinus Petronius or Vatinius have more influence As to Csar perhaps he has never even heard of the Lygian people; and if he has demanded the delivery of Lygia the hostage he has done so because some one persuaded him to it --it is easy to guess who could do that She raised her eyes to him quickly Is it Petronius? It is A moment of silence followed; then the general continued -- See what it is to admit over the threshold any of those people without conscience or honor Cursed be the moment in which Vinicius entered our house for he brought Petronius Woe to Lygia since those men are not seeking a hostage but a concubine And his speech became more hissing than usual because of helpless rage and of sorrow for his adopted daughter He struggled with himself some time and only his clenched fists showed how severe was the struggle within him I have revered the gods so far said he; but at this moment I think that not they are over the world but one mad malicious monster named Nero Aulus said Pomponia Nero is only a handful of rotten dust before God
adult	and indulged favorite The traveller in the south must often have remarked that peculiar air of refinement that softness of voice and manner which seems in many cases to be a particular gift to the quadroon and mulatto women These natural graces in the quadroon are often united with beauty of the most dazzling kind and in almost every case with a personal appearance prepossessing and agreeable Eliza such as we have described her is not a fancy sketch but taken from remembrance as we saw her years ago in Kentucky Safe under the protecting care of her mistress Eliza had reached maturity without those temptations which make beauty so fatal an inheritance to a slave She had been married to a bright and talented young mulatto man who was a slave on a neighboring estate and bore the name of George Harris This young man had been hired out by his master to work in a bagging factory where his adroitness and ingenuity caused him to be considered the first hand in the place He had invented a machine for the cleaning of the hemp which considering the education and circumstances of the inventor displayed quite as much mechanical genius as Whitney's cotton-gin * * A machine of this description was really the invention of a young colored man in Kentucky [Mrs Stowe's note ] He was possessed of a handsome person and pleasing manners and was a general favorite in the factory Nevertheless as this young man was in the eye of the law not a man but a thing all these superior qualifications were subject to the control of a vulgar narrow-minded tyrannical master This same gentleman having heard of the fame of George's invention took a ride over to the factory to see what this intelligent chattel had been about He was received with great enthusiasm by the employer who congratulated him on possessing so valuable a slave He was waited upon over the factory shown the machinery by George who in high spirits talked so fluently held himself so erect looked so handsome and manly that his master began to feel an uneasy consciousness of inferiority What business had his slave to be marching round the country inventing machines and holding up his head among gentlemen? He'd soon put a stop to it He'd take him back and put him to hoeing and digging and see if he'd step about so smart Accordingly the manufacturer and all hands concerned were astounded when he suddenly demanded George's wages and announced his intention of taking him home But Mr Harris remonstrated the manufacturer isn't this rather sudden? What if it is?--isn't the man _mine_? We would be willing sir to increase the rate of compensation No object at all sir I don't need to hire any of my hands out unless I've a mind to But sir he seems peculiarly adapted to this business Dare say he may be; never was much adapted to anything that I set him about I'll be bound But only think of his inventing this machine interposed one of the workmen rather unluckily O yes! a machine for saving work is it? He'd invent that I'll be bound; let a nigger alone for that any time They are all labor-saving machines themselves every one of 'em No he shall tramp! George had stood like one transfixed at hearing his doom thus suddenly pronounced by a power that he knew was irresistible He folded his arms tightly pressed in his lips but a whole volcano of bitter feelings burned in his bosom and sent streams of fire through his veins He breathed short and his large dark eyes flashed like live coals; and he might have broken out into some dangerous ebullition had not the kindly manufacturer touched him on the arm and said in a low tone Give way George; go with him for the present We'll try to help you yet The tyrant observed the whisper and conjectured its import though he could not hear what was said; and he inwardly strengthened himself in his determination to keep the power he possessed over his victim George was taken home and put to the meanest drudgery of the farm He had been able to repress every disrespectful word; but the flashing eye the gloomy and troubled brow were part of a natural language that could not be repressed --indubitable signs which showed too plainly that the man could not become a thing It was during the happy period of his employment in the factory that George had seen and married his wife During that period --being much trusted and favored by his employer --he had free liberty to come and go at discretion The marriage was highly approved of by Mrs Shelby who with a little womanly complacency in match-making felt pleased to unite her handsome favorite with one of her own class who seemed in every way suited to her; and so they were married in her mistress' great parlor and her mistress herself adorned the bride's beautiful hair with orange-blossoms and threw over it the bridal veil which certainly could scarce have rested on a fairer head; and there was no lack of white gloves and cake and wine --of admiring guests to praise the
adult	know my own business sir I did not presume to interfere with it sir I only thought that you might think it for your interest to let your man to us on the terms proposed O I understand the matter well enough I saw your winking and whispering the day I took him out of the factory; but you don't come it over me that way It's a free country sir; the man's _mine_ and I do what I please with him --that's it! And so fell George's last hope;--nothing before him but a life of toil and drudgery rendered more bitter by every little smarting vexation and indignity which tyrannical ingenuity could devise A very humane jurist once said The worst use you can put a man to is to hang him No; there is another use that a man can be put to that is WORSE! CHAPTER III The Husband and Father Mrs Shelby had gone on her visit and Eliza stood in the verandah rather dejectedly looking after the retreating carriage when a hand was laid on her shoulder She turned and a bright smile lighted up her fine eyes George is it you? How you frightened me! Well; I am so glad you 's come! Missis is gone to spend the afternoon; so come into my little room and we'll have the time all to ourselves Saying this she drew him into a neat little apartment opening on the verandah where she generally sat at her sewing within call of her mistress How glad I am!--why don't you smile?--and look at Harry--how he grows The boy stood shyly regarding his father through his curls holding close to the skirts of his mother's dress Isn't he beautiful? said Eliza lifting his long curls and kissing him I wish he'd never been born! said George bitterly I wish I'd never been born myself! Surprised and frightened Eliza sat down leaned her head on her husband's shoulder and burst into tears There now Eliza it's too bad for me to make you feel so poor girl! said he fondly; it's too bad: O how I wish you never had seen me--you might have been happy! George! George! how can you talk so? What dreadful thing has happened or is going to happen? I'm sure we've been very happy till lately So we have dear said George Then drawing his child on his knee he gazed intently on his glorious dark eyes and passed his hands through his long curls Just like you Eliza; and you are the handsomest woman I ever saw and the best one I ever wish to see; but oh I wish I'd never seen you nor you me! O George how can you! Yes Eliza it's all misery misery misery! My life is bitter as wormwood; the very life is burning out of me I'm a poor miserable forlorn drudge; I shall only drag you down with me that's all What's the use of our trying to do anything trying to know anything trying to be anything? What's the use of living? I wish I was dead! O now dear George that is really wicked! I know how you feel about losing your place in the factory and you have a hard master; but pray be patient and perhaps something-- Patient! said he interrupting her; haven't I been patient? Did I say a word when he came and took me away for no earthly reason from the place where everybody was kind to me? I'd paid him truly every cent of my earnings --and they all say I worked well Well it _is_ dreadful said Eliza; but after all he is your master you know My master! and who made him my master? That's what I think of--what right has he to me? I'm a man as much as he is I'm a better man than he is I know more about business than he does; I am a better manager than he is; I can read better than he can; I can write a better hand --and I've learned it all myself and no thanks to him --I've learned it in spite of him; and now what right has he to make a dray-horse of me?--to take me from things I can do and do better than he can and put me to work that any horse can do? He tries to do it; he says he'll bring me down and humble me and he puts me to just the hardest meanest and dirtiest work on purpose! O George! George! you frighten me! Why I never heard you talk so; I'm afraid you'll do something dreadful I don't wonder at your feelings at all; but oh do be careful--do do--for my sake--for Harry's!
adult	grew dark and his eyes burned with an expression that made his young wife tremble Who made this man my master? That's what I want to know! he said Well said Eliza mournfully I always thought that I must obey my master and mistress or I couldn't be a Christian There is some sense in it in your case; they have brought you up like a child fed you clothed you indulged you and taught you so that you have a good education; that is some reason why they should claim you But I have been kicked and cuffed and sworn at and at the best only let alone; and what do I owe? I've paid for all my keeping a hundred times over I _won't_ bear it No I _won't_! he said clenching his hand with a fierce frown Eliza trembled and was silent She had never seen her husband in this mood before; and her gentle system of ethics seemed to bend like a reed in the surges of such passions You know poor little Carlo that you gave me added George; the creature has been about all the comfort that I've had He has slept with me nights and followed me around days and kind o' looked at me as if he understood how I felt Well the other day I was just feeding him with a few old scraps I picked up by the kitchen door and Mas'r came along and said I was feeding him up at his expense and that he couldn't afford to have every nigger keeping his dog and ordered me to tie a stone to his neck and throw him in the pond O George you didn't do it! Do it? not I!--but he did Mas'r and Tom pelted the poor drowning creature with stones Poor thing! he looked at me so mournful as if he wondered why I didn't save him I had to take a flogging because I wouldn't do it myself I don't care Mas'r will find out that I'm one that whipping won't tame My day will come yet if he don't look out What are you going to do? O George don't do anything wicked; if you only trust in God and try to do right he'll deliver you I an't a Christian like you Eliza; my heart's full of bitterness; I can't trust in God Why does he let things be so? O George we must have faith Mistress says that when all things go wrong to us we must believe that God is doing the very best That's easy to say for people that are sitting on their sofas and riding in their carriages; but let 'em be where I am I guess it would come some harder I wish I could be good; but my heart burns and can't be reconciled anyhow You couldn't in my place --you can't now if I tell you all I've got to say You don't know the whole yet What can be coming now? Well lately Mas'r has been saying that he was a fool to let me marry off the place; that he hates Mr Shelby and all his tribe because they are proud and hold their heads up above him and that I've got proud notions from you; and he says he won't let me come here any more and that I shall take a wife and settle down on his place At first he only scolded and grumbled these things; but yesterday he told me that I should take Mina for a wife and settle down in a cabin with her or he would sell me down river Why--but you were married to _me_ by the minister as much as if you'd been a white man! said Eliza simply Don't you know a slave can't be married? There is no law in this country for that; I can't hold you for my wife if he chooses to part us That's why I wish I'd never seen you --why I wish I'd never been born; it would have been better for us both --it would have been better for this poor child if he had never been born All this may happen to him yet! O but master is so kind! Yes but who knows?--he may die--and then he may be sold to nobody knows who What pleasure is it that he is handsome and smart and bright? I tell you Eliza that a sword will pierce through your soul for every good and pleasant thing your child is or has; it will make him worth too much for you to keep The words smote heavily on Eliza's heart; the vision of the trader came before her eyes and as if some one had struck her a deadly blow she turned pale and gasped for breath She looked nervously out on the verandah where the boy tired of the grave conversation had retired and where he was riding triumphantly up and down on Mr Shelby's walking-stick She would have spoken to tell her husband her fears but checked herself No no --he has enough to bear poor fellow! she thought No I won't tell him; besides it an't true; Missis never deceives us So Eliza my girl said the husband mournfully bear up now; and good-by for I'm going Going George! Going where? To Canada said he straightening himself up; and when I'm there I'll buy you; that's all the hope that's left us You have a kind master that won't refuse to sell you I'll buy you and the boy;--God helping me I will!
adult	help me; and in the course of a week or so I shall be among the missing some day Pray for me Eliza; perhaps the good Lord will hear _you_ O pray yourself George and go trusting in him; then you won't do anything wicked Well now _good-by_ said George holding Eliza's hands and gazing into her eyes without moving They stood silent; then there were last words and sobs and bitter weeping --such parting as those may make whose hope to meet again is as the spider's web --and the husband and wife were parted CHAPTER IV An Evening in Uncle Tom's Cabin The cabin of Uncle Tom was a small log building close adjoining to the house as the negro _par excellence_ designates his master's dwelling In front it had a neat garden-patch where every summer strawberries raspberries and a variety of fruits and vegetables flourished under careful tending The whole front of it was covered by a large scarlet bignonia and a native multiflora rose which entwisting and interlacing left scarce a vestige of the rough logs to be seen Here also in summer various brilliant annuals such as marigolds petunias four-o'clocks found an indulgent corner in which to unfold their splendors and were the delight and pride of Aunt Chloe's heart Let us enter the dwelling The evening meal at the house is over and Aunt Chloe who presided over its preparation as head cook has left to inferior officers in the kitchen the business of clearing away and washing dishes and come out into her own snug territories to get her ole man's supper ; therefore doubt not that it is her you see by the fire presiding with anxious interest over certain frizzling items in a stew-pan and anon with grave consideration lifting the cover of a bake-kettle from whence steam forth indubitable intimations of something good A round black shining face is hers so glossy as to suggest the idea that she might have been washed over with white of eggs like one of her own tea rusks Her whole plump countenance beams with satisfaction and contentment from under her well-starched checked turban bearing on it however if we must confess it a little of that tinge of self-consciousness which becomes the first cook of the neighborhood as Aunt Chloe was universally held and acknowledged to be A cook she certainly was in the very bone and centre of her soul Not a chicken or turkey or duck in the barn-yard but looked grave when they saw her approaching and seemed evidently to be reflecting on their latter end; and certain it was that she was always meditating on trussing stuffing and roasting to a degree that was calculated to inspire terror in any reflecting fowl living Her corn-cake in all its varieties of hoe-cake dodgers muffins and other species too numerous to mention was a sublime mystery to all less practised compounders; and she would shake her fat sides with honest pride and merriment as she would narrate the fruitless efforts that one and another of her compeers had made to attain to her elevation The arrival of company at the house the arranging of dinners and suppers in style awoke all the energies of her soul; and no sight was more welcome to her than a pile of travelling trunks launched on the verandah for then she foresaw fresh efforts and fresh triumphs Just at present however Aunt Chloe is looking into the bake-pan; in which congenial operation we shall leave her till we finish our picture of the cottage In one corner of it stood a bed covered neatly with a snowy spread; and by the side of it was a piece of carpeting of some considerable size On this piece of carpeting Aunt Chloe took her stand as being decidedly in the upper walks of life; and it and the bed by which it lay and the whole corner in fact were treated with distinguished consideration and made so far as possible sacred from the marauding inroads and desecrations of little folks In fact that corner was the _drawing-room_ of the establishment In the other corner was a bed of much humbler pretensions and evidently designed for _use_ The wall over the fireplace was adorned with some very brilliant scriptural prints and a portrait of General Washington drawn and colored in a manner which would certainly have astonished that hero if ever he happened to meet with its like On a rough bench in the corner a couple of woolly-headed boys with glistening black eyes and fat shining cheeks were busy in superintending the first walking operations of the baby which as is usually the case consisted in getting up on its feet balancing a moment and then tumbling down --each successive failure being violently cheered as something decidedly clever A table somewhat rheumatic in its limbs was drawn out in front of the fire and covered with a cloth displaying cups and saucers of a decidedly brilliant pattern with other symptoms of an approaching meal At this table was seated Uncle Tom Mr Shelby's best hand who as he is to be the hero of our story we must daguerreotype for our readers He was a large broad-chested powerfully-made man of a full glossy black and a face whose truly African features were characterized by an expression of grave and steady good sense united with much kindliness and benevolence There was something about his whole air self-respecting and dignified yet united with a confiding and humble simplicity
adult	But Aunt Chloe I'm getting mighty hungry said George Isn't that cake in the skillet almost done? Mose done Mas'r George said Aunt Chloe lifting the lid and peeping in -- browning beautiful--a real lovely brown Ah! let me alone for dat Missis let Sally try to make some cake t' other day jes to _larn_ her she said 'O go way Missis ' said I; 'it really hurts my feelin's now to see good vittles spilt dat ar way! Cake ris all to one side--no shape at all; no more than my shoe; go way! And with this final expression of contempt for Sally's greenness Aunt Chloe whipped the cover off the bake-kettle and disclosed to view a neatly-baked pound-cake of which no city confectioner need to have been ashamed This being evidently the central point of the entertainment Aunt Chloe began now to bustle about earnestly in the supper department Here you Mose and Pete! get out de way you niggers! Get away Mericky honey --mammy'll give her baby some fin by and by Now Mas'r George you jest take off dem books and set down now with my old man and I'll take up de sausages and have de first griddle full of cakes on your plates in less dan no time They wanted me to come to supper in the house said George; but I knew what was what too well for that Aunt Chloe So you did--so you did honey said Aunt Chloe heaping the smoking batter-cakes on his plate; you know'd your old aunty'd keep the best for you O let you alone for dat! Go way! And with that aunty gave George a nudge with her finger designed to be immensely facetious and turned again to her griddle with great briskness Now for the cake said Mas'r George when the activity of the griddle department had somewhat subsided; and with that the youngster flourished a large knife over the article in question La bless you Mas'r George! said Aunt Chloe with earnestness catching his arm you wouldn't be for cuttin' it wid dat ar great heavy knife! Smash all down--spile all de pretty rise of it Here I've got a thin old knife I keeps sharp a purpose Dar now see! comes apart light as a feather! Now eat away--you won't get anything to beat dat ar Tom Lincon says said George speaking with his mouth full that their Jinny is a better cook than you Dem Lincons an't much count no way! said Aunt Chloe contemptuously; I mean set along side _our_ folks They 's 'spectable folks enough in a kinder plain way; but as to gettin' up anything in style they don't begin to have a notion on 't Set Mas'r Lincon now alongside Mas'r Shelby! Good Lor! and Missis Lincon --can she kinder sweep it into a room like my missis --so kinder splendid yer know! O go way! don't tell me nothin' of dem Lincons! --and Aunt Chloe tossed her head as one who hoped she did know something of the world Well though I've heard you say said George that Jinny was a pretty fair cook So I did said Aunt Chloe -- I may say dat Good plain common cookin' Jinny'll do;--make a good pone o' bread --bile her taters _far_ --her corn cakes isn't extra not extra now Jinny's corn cakes isn't but then they's far --but Lor come to de higher branches and what _can_ she do? Why she makes pies--sartin she does; but what kinder crust? Can she make your real flecky paste as melts in your mouth and lies all up like a puff? Now I went over thar when Miss Mary was gwine to be married and Jinny she jest showed me de weddin' pies Jinny and I is good friends ye know I never said nothin'; but go 'long Mas'r George! Why I shouldn't sleep a wink for a week if I had a batch of pies like dem ar Why dey wan't no 'count 't all I suppose Jinny thought they were ever so nice said George Thought so!--didn't she? Thar she was showing em as innocent--ye see it's jest here Jinny _don't know_ Lor the family an't nothing! She can't be spected to know! 'Ta'nt no fault o' hem Ah Mas'r George you doesn't know half 'your privileges in yer family and bringin' up! Here Aunt Chloe sighed and rolled up her eyes with emotion I'm sure Aunt Chloe I understand I my pie and pudding privileges said George Ask Tom Lincon if I don't crow over him every time I meet him Aunt Chloe sat back in her chair and indulged in a hearty guffaw of laughter at this witticism of young Mas'r's laughing till the tears rolled down her black shining cheeks and varying the exercise with playfully slapping and poking Mas'r Georgey and telling him to go way and that he was a case--that he was fit to kill her and that he sartin would kill her one of these days; and between each of these sanguinary predictions going off into a laugh each longer and stronger than the other till George really began to think that he was a very dangerously witty fellow and that it became him to be careful how he talked as funny as he could And so ye telled Tom did ye? O Lor! what young uns will be up ter! Ye crowed over Tom? O Lor! Mas'r George if ye wouldn't make a hornbug laugh! Yes said George I says to him 'Tom you ought to see some of Aunt Chloe's pies; they're the right sort ' says I Pity now Tom couldn't said Aunt Chloe on whose benevolent heart the idea of Tom's benighted condition seemed to make a strong
adult	dew 's on 'em; and look at my great black stumpin hands Now don't ye think dat de Lord must have meant _me_ to make de pie-crust and you to stay in de parlor? Dar! I was jist so sarcy Mas'r George And what did mother say? said George Say?--why she kinder larfed in her eyes--dem great handsome eyes o' hern; and says she 'Well Aunt Chloe I think you are about in the right on 't ' says she; and she went off in de parlor She oughter cracked me over de head for bein' so sarcy; but dar's whar 't is--I can't do nothin' with ladies in de kitchen! Well you made out well with that dinner --I remember everybody said so said George Didn't I? And wan't I behind de dinin'-room door dat bery day? and didn't I see de General pass his plate three times for some more dat bery pie?--and says he 'You must have an uncommon cook Mrs Shelby ' Lor! I was fit to split myself And de Gineral he knows what cookin' is said Aunt Chloe drawing herself up with an air Bery nice man de Gineral! He comes of one of de bery _fustest_ families in Old Virginny! He knows what's what now as well as I do--de Gineral Ye see there's _pints_ in all pies Mas'r George; but tan't everybody knows what they is or as orter be But the Gineral he knows; I knew by his 'marks he made Yes he knows what de pints is! By this time Master George had arrived at that pass to which even a boy can come (under uncommon circumstances when he really could not eat another morsel) and therefore he was at leisure to notice the pile of woolly heads and glistening eyes which were regarding their operations hungrily from the opposite corner Here you Mose Pete he said breaking off liberal bits and throwing it at them; you want some don't you? Come Aunt Chloe bake them some cakes And George and Tom moved to a comfortable seat in the chimney-corner while Aunte Chloe after baking a goodly pile of cakes took her baby on her lap and began alternately filling its mouth and her own and distributing to Mose and Pete who seemed rather to prefer eating theirs as they rolled about on the floor under the table tickling each other and occasionally pulling the baby's toes O! go long will ye? said the mother giving now and then a kick in a kind of general way under the table when the movement became too obstreperous Can't ye be decent when white folks comes to see ye? Stop dat ar now will ye? Better mind yerselves or I'll take ye down a button-hole lower when Mas'r George is gone! What meaning was couched under this terrible threat it is difficult to say; but certain it is that its awful indistinctness seemed to produce very little impression on the young sinners addressed La now! said Uncle Tom they are so full of tickle all the while they can't behave theirselves Here the boys emerged from under the table and with hands and faces well plastered with molasses began a vigorous kissing of the baby Get along wid ye! said the mother pushing away their woolly heads Ye'll all stick together and never get clar if ye do dat fashion Go long to de spring and wash yerselves! she said seconding her exhortations by a slap which resounded very formidably but which seemed only to knock out so much more laugh from the young ones as they tumbled precipitately over each other out of doors where they fairly screamed with merriment Did ye ever see such aggravating young uns? said Aunt Chloe rather complacently as producing an old towel kept for such emergencies she poured a little water out of the cracked tea-pot on it and began rubbing off the molasses from the baby's face and hands; and having polished her till she shone she set her down in Tom's lap while she busied herself in clearing away supper The baby employed the intervals in pulling Tom's nose scratching his face and burying her fat hands in his woolly hair which last operation seemed to afford her special content Aint she a peart young un? said Tom holding her from him to take a full-length view; then getting up he set her on his broad shoulder and began capering and dancing with her while Mas'r George snapped at her with his pocket-handkerchief and Mose and Pete now returned again roared after her like bears till Aunt Chloe declared that they fairly took her head off with their noise As according to her own statement this surgical operation was a matter of daily occurrence in the cabin the declaration no whit abated the merriment till every one had roared and tumbled and danced themselves down to a state of composure Well now I hopes you're done said Aunt Chloe who had been busy in pulling out a rude box of a trundle-bed; and now you Mose and you Pete get into thar; for we's goin' to have the meetin' O mother we don't wanter We wants to sit up to meetin' --meetin's is so curis We likes 'em La Aunt Chloe shove it under and let 'em sit up said Mas'r George decisively giving a push to the rude machine Aunt Chloe having thus saved appearances seemed highly delighted to
adult	Pete Good Lor! get him in it then said Mose and den he'd begin 'Come saints--and sinners hear me tell ' and den down he'd go --and Mose imitated precisely the nasal tones of the old man tumbling on the floor to illustrate the supposed catastrophe Come now be decent can't ye? said Aunt Chloe; an't yer shamed? Mas'r George however joined the offender in the laugh and declared decidedly that Mose was a buster So the maternal admonition seemed rather to fail of effect Well ole man said Aunt Chloe you'll have to tote in them ar bar'ls Mother's bar'ls is like dat ar widder's Mas'r George was reading 'bout in de good book --dey never fails said Mose aside to Peter I'm sure one on 'em caved in last week said Pete and let 'em all down in de middle of de singin'; dat ar was failin' warnt it? During this aside between Mose and Pete two empty casks had been rolled into the cabin and being secured from rolling by stones on each side boards were laid across them which arrangement together with the turning down of certain tubs and pails and the disposing of the rickety chairs at last completed the preparation Mas'r George is such a beautiful reader now I know he'll stay to read for us said Aunt Chloe; 'pears like 't will be so much more interestin' George very readily consented for your boy is always ready for anything that makes him of importance The room was soon filled with a motley assemblage from the old gray-headed patriarch of eighty to the young girl and lad of fifteen A little harmless gossip ensued on various themes such as where old Aunt Sally got her new red headkerchief and how Missis was a going to give Lizzy that spotted muslin gown when she'd got her new berage made up; and how Mas'r Shelby was thinking of buying a new sorrel colt that was going to prove an addition to the glories of the place A few of the worshippers belonged to families hard by who had got permission to attend and who brought in various choice scraps of information about the sayings and doings at the house and on the place which circulated as freely as the same sort of small change does in higher circles After a while the singing commenced to the evident delight of all present Not even all the disadvantage of nasal intonation could prevent the effect of the naturally fine voices in airs at once wild and spirited The words were sometimes the well-known and common hymns sung in the churches about and sometimes of a wilder more indefinite character picked up at camp-meetings The chorus of one of them which ran as follows was sung with great energy and unction: _ Die on the field of battle Die on the field of battle Glory in my soul _ Another special favorite had oft repeated the words-- _ O I'm going to glory --won't you come along with me? Don't you see the angels beck'ning and a calling me away? Don't you see the golden city and the everlasting day? _ There were others which made incessant mention of Jordan's banks and Canaan's fields and the New Jerusalem; for the negro mind impassioned and imaginative always attaches itself to hymns and expressions of a vivid and pictorial nature; and as they sung some laughed and some cried and some clapped hands or shook hands rejoicingly with each other as if they had fairly gained the other side of the river Various exhortations or relations of experience followed and intermingled with the singing One old gray-headed woman long past work but much revered as a sort of chronicle of the past rose and leaning on her staff said-- Well chil'en! Well I'm mighty glad to hear ye all and see ye all once more 'cause I don't know when I'll be gone to glory; but I've done got ready chil'en; 'pears like I'd got my little bundle all tied up and my bonnet on jest a waitin' for the stage to come along and take me home; sometimes in the night I think I hear the wheels a rattlin' and I'm lookin' out all the time; now you jest be ready too for I tell ye all chil'en she said striking her staff hard on the floor dat ar _glory_ is a mighty thing! It's a mighty thing chil'en --you don'no nothing about it --it's _wonderful_ And the old creature sat down with streaming tears as wholly overcome while the whole circle struck up-- _ O Canaan bright Canaan I'm bound for the land of Canaan _ Mas'r George by request read the last chapters of Revelation often interrupted by such exclamations as The _sakes_ now! Only hear that! Jest think on 't! Is all that a comin' sure enough? George who was a bright boy and well trained in religious things by his mother finding himself an object of general admiration threw in expositions of his own from time to time with a commendable
adult	While this scene was passing in the cabin of the man one quite otherwise passed in the halls of the master The trader and Mr Shelby were seated together in the dining room afore-named at a table covered with papers and writing utensils Mr Shelby was busy in counting some bundles of bills which as they were counted he pushed over to the trader who counted them likewise All fair said the trader; and now for signing these yer Mr Shelby hastily drew the bills of sale towards him and signed them like a man that hurries over some disagreeable business and then pushed them over with the money Haley produced from a well-worn valise a parchment which after looking over it a moment he handed to Mr Shelby who took it with a gesture of suppressed eagerness Wal now the thing's _done_! said the trader getting up It's _done_! said Mr Shelby in a musing tone; and fetching a long breath he repeated _ It's done! _ Yer don't seem to feel much pleased with it 'pears to me said the trader Haley said Mr Shelby I hope you'll remember that you promised on your honor you wouldn't sell Tom without knowing what sort of hands he's going into Why you've just done it sir said the trader Circumstances you well know _obliged_ me said Shelby haughtily Wal you know they may 'blige _me_ too said the trader Howsomever I'll do the very best I can in gettin' Tom a good berth; as to my treatin' on him bad you needn't be a grain afeard If there's anything that I thank the Lord for it is that I'm never noways cruel After the expositions which the trader had previously given of his humane principles Mr Shelby did not feel particularly reassured by these declarations; but as they were the best comfort the case admitted of he allowed the trader to depart in silence and betook himself to a solitary cigar CHAPTER V Showing the Feelings of Living Property on Changing Owners Mr and Mrs Shelby had retired to their apartment for the night He was lounging in a large easy-chair looking over some letters that had come in the afternoon mail and she was standing before her mirror brushing out the complicated braids and curls in which Eliza had arranged her hair; for noticing her pale cheeks and haggard eyes she had excused her attendance that night and ordered her to bed The employment naturally enough suggested her conversation with the girl in the morning; and turning to her husband she said carelessly By the by Arthur who was that low-bred fellow that you lugged in to our dinner-table today? Haley is his name said Shelby turning himself rather uneasily in his chair and continuing with his eyes fixed on a letter Haley! Who is he and what may be his business here pray? Well he's a man that I transacted some business with last time I was at Natchez said Mr Shelby And he presumed on it to make himself quite at home and call and dine here ay? Why I invited him; I had some accounts with him said Shelby Is he a negro-trader? said Mrs Shelby noticing a certain embarrassment in her husband's manner Why my dear what put that into your head? said Shelby looking up Nothing --only Eliza came in here after dinner in a great worry crying and taking on and said you were talking with a trader and that she heard him make an offer for her boy--the ridiculous little goose! She did hey? said Mr Shelby returning to his paper which he seemed for a few moments quite intent upon not perceiving that he was holding it bottom upwards It will have to come out said he mentally; as well now as ever I told Eliza said Mrs Shelby as she continued brushing her hair that she was a little fool for her pains and that you never had anything to do with that sort of persons Of course I knew you never meant to sell any of our people --least of all to such a fellow Well Emily said her husband so I have always felt and said; but the fact is that my business lies so that I cannot get on without I shall have to sell some of my hands
adult	if that would suit you any better said Mr Shelby The wretch! said Mrs Shelby vehemently Well I didn't listen to it a moment --out of regard to your feelings I wouldn't;--so give me some credit My dear said Mrs Shelby recollecting herself forgive me I have been hasty I was surprised and entirely unprepared for this;--but surely you will allow me to intercede for these poor creatures Tom is a noble-hearted faithful fellow if he is black I do believe Mr Shelby that if he were put to it he would lay down his life for you I know it --I dare say;--but what's the use of all this?--I can't help myself Why not make a pecuniary sacrifice? I'm willing to bear my part of the inconvenience O Mr Shelby I have tried--tried most faithfully as a Christian woman should--to do my duty to these poor simple dependent creatures I have cared for them instructed them watched over them and know all their little cares and joys for years; and how can I ever hold up my head again among them if for the sake of a little paltry gain we sell such a faithful excellent confiding creature as poor Tom and tear from him in a moment all we have taught him to love and value? I have taught them the duties of the family of parent and child and husband and wife; and how can I bear to have this open acknowledgment that we care for no tie no duty no relation however sacred compared with money? I have talked with Eliza about her boy--her duty to him as a Christian mother to watch over him pray for him and bring him up in a Christian way; and now what can I say if you tear him away and sell him soul and body to a profane unprincipled man just to save a little money? I have told her that one soul is worth more than all the money in the world; and how will she believe me when she sees us turn round and sell her child?--sell him perhaps to certain ruin of body and soul! I'm sorry you feel so about it --indeed I am said Mr Shelby; and I respect your feelings too though I don't pretend to share them to their full extent; but I tell you now solemnly it's of no use--I can't help myself I didn't mean to tell you this Emily; but in plain words there is no choice between selling these two and selling everything Either they must go or _all_ must Haley has come into possession of a mortgage which if I don't clear off with him directly will take everything before it I've raked and scraped and borrowed and all but begged --and the price of these two was needed to make up the balance and I had to give them up Haley fancied the child; he agreed to settle the matter that way and no other I was in his power and _had_ to do it If you feel so to have them sold would it be any better to have _all_ sold? Mrs Shelby stood like one stricken Finally turning to her toilet she rested her face in her hands and gave a sort of groan This is God's curse on slavery!--a bitter bitter most accursed thing!--a curse to the master and a curse to the slave! I was a fool to think I could make anything good out of such a deadly evil It is a sin to hold a slave under laws like ours --I always felt it was --I always thought so when I was a girl --I thought so still more after I joined the church; but I thought I could gild it over --I thought by kindness and care and instruction I could make the condition of mine better than freedom--fool that I was! Why wife you are getting to be an abolitionist quite Abolitionist! if they knew all I know about slavery they _might_ talk! We don't need them to tell us; you know I never thought that slavery was right--never felt willing to own slaves Well therein you differ from many wise and pious men said Mr Shelby You remember Mr B 's sermon the other Sunday? I don't want to hear such sermons; I never wish to hear Mr B in our church again Ministers can't help the evil perhaps --can't cure it any more than we can --but defend it!--it always went against my common sense And I think you didn't think much of that sermon either Well said Shelby I must say these ministers sometimes carry matters further than we poor sinners would exactly dare to do We men of the world must wink pretty hard at various things and get used to a deal that isn't the exact thing But we don't quite fancy when women and ministers come out broad and square and go beyond us in matters of either modesty or morals that's a fact But now my dear I trust you see the necessity of the thing and you see that I have done the very best that circumstances would allow O yes yes! said Mrs Shelby hurriedly and abstractedly fingering her gold watch -- I haven't any jewelry of any amount she added thoughtfully; but would not this watch do something?--it was an expensive one when it was bought If I could only at least save Eliza's child I would sacrifice anything I have I'm sorry very sorry Emily said Mr Shelby I'm sorry this takes hold of you so; but it will do no good The fact is Emily the thing's done; the bills of sale are already signed and in Haley's hands; and you must be thankful it is no worse That man has had it in his power to ruin us all --and now he is fairly off If you knew the man as I do you'd think that we had had a narrow escape Is he so hard then?
adult	little suspected Communicating with their apartment was a large closet opening by a door into the outer passage When Mrs Shelby had dismissed Eliza for the night her feverish and excited mind had suggested the idea of this closet; and she had hidden herself there and with her ear pressed close against the crack of the door had lost not a word of the conversation When the voices died into silence she rose and crept stealthily away Pale shivering with rigid features and compressed lips she looked an entirely altered being from the soft and timid creature she had been hitherto She moved cautiously along the entry paused one moment at her mistress' door and raised her hands in mute appeal to Heaven and then turned and glided into her own room It was a quiet neat apartment on the same floor with her mistress There was a pleasant sunny window where she had often sat singing at her sewing; there a little case of books and various little fancy articles ranged by them the gifts of Christmas holidays; there was her simple wardrobe in the closet and in the drawers:--here was in short her home; and on the whole a happy one it had been to her But there on the bed lay her slumbering boy his long curls falling negligently around his unconscious face his rosy mouth half open his little fat hands thrown out over the bedclothes and a smile spread like a sunbeam over his whole face Poor boy! poor fellow! said Eliza; they have sold you! but your mother will save you yet! No tear dropped over that pillow; in such straits as these the heart has no tears to give --it drops only blood bleeding itself away in silence She took a piece of paper and a pencil and wrote hastily O Missis! dear Missis! don't think me ungrateful --don't think hard of me any way --I heard all you and master said tonight I am going to try to save my boy--you will not blame me! God bless and reward you for all your kindness! Hastily folding and directing this she went to a drawer and made up a little package of clothing for her boy which she tied with a handkerchief firmly round her waist; and so fond is a mother's remembrance that even in the terrors of that hour she did not forget to put in the little package one or two of his favorite toys reserving a gayly painted parrot to amuse him when she should be called on to awaken him It was some trouble to arouse the little sleeper; but after some effort he sat up and was playing with his bird while his mother was putting on her bonnet and shawl Where are you going mother? said he as she drew near the bed with his little coat and cap His mother drew near and looked so earnestly into his eyes that he at once divined that something unusual was the matter Hush Harry she said; mustn't speak loud or they will hear us A wicked man was coming to take little Harry away from his mother and carry him 'way off in the dark; but mother won't let him--she's going to put on her little boy's cap and coat and run off with him so the ugly man can't catch him Saying these words she had tied and buttoned on the child's simple outfit and taking him in her arms she whispered to him to be very still; and opening a door in her room which led into the outer verandah she glided noiselessly out It was a sparkling frosty starlight night and the mother wrapped the shawl close round her child as perfectly quiet with vague terror he clung round her neck Old Bruno a great Newfoundland who slept at the end of the porch rose with a low growl as she came near She gently spoke his name and the animal an old pet and playmate of hers instantly wagging his tail prepared to follow her though apparently revolving much in this simple dog's head what such an indiscreet midnight promenade might mean Some dim ideas of imprudence or impropriety in the measure seemed to embarrass him considerably; for he often stopped as Eliza glided forward and looked wistfully first at her and then at the house and then as if reassured by reflection he pattered along after her again A few minutes brought them to the window of Uncle Tom's cottage and Eliza stopping tapped lightly on the window-pane The prayer-meeting at Uncle Tom's had in the order of hymn-singing been protracted to a very late hour; and as Uncle Tom had indulged himself in a few lengthy solos afterwards the consequence was that although it was now between twelve and one o'clock he and his worthy helpmeet were not yet asleep Good Lord! what's that? said Aunt Chloe starting up and hastily drawing the curtain My sakes alive if it an't Lizy! Get on your clothes old man quick!--there's old Bruno too a pawin round; what on airth! I'm gwine to open the door And suiting the action to the word the door flew open and the light of the tallow candle which Tom had hastily lighted fell on the haggard face and dark wild eyes of the fugitive Lord bless you!--I'm skeered to look at ye Lizy! Are ye tuck sick or what's come over ye? I'm running away--Uncle Tom and Aunt Chloe--carrying off my child--Master sold him!
adult	about half a dozen men--Henderson Ogilvy and a tall fair-haired man that I afterwards learned was Stent the Astronomer Royal with several workmen wielding spades and pickaxes Stent was giving directions in a clear high-pitched voice He was standing on the cylinder which was now evidently much cooler; his face was crimson and streaming with perspiration and something seemed to have irritated him A large portion of the cylinder had been uncovered though its lower end was still embedded As soon as Ogilvy saw me among the staring crowd on the edge of the pit he called to me to come down and asked me if I would mind going over to see Lord Hilton the lord of the manor The growing crowd he said was becoming a serious impediment to their excavations especially the boys They wanted a light railing put up and help to keep the people back He told me that a faint stirring was occasionally still audible within the case but that the workmen had failed to unscrew the top as it afforded no grip to them The case appeared to be enormously thick and it was possible that the faint sounds we heard represented a noisy tumult in the interior I was very glad to do as he asked and so become one of the privileged spectators within the contemplated enclosure I failed to find Lord Hilton at his house but I was told he was expected from London by the six o'clock train from Waterloo; and as it was then about a quarter past five I went home had some tea and walked up to the station to waylay him CHAPTER FOUR THE CYLINDER OPENS When I returned to the common the sun was setting Scattered groups were hurrying from the direction of Woking and one or two persons were returning The crowd about the pit had increased and stood out black against the lemon yellow of the sky--a couple of hundred people perhaps There were raised voices and some sort of struggle appeared to be going on about the pit Strange imaginings passed through my mind As I drew nearer I heard Stent's voice: Keep back! Keep back! A boy came running towards me It's a-movin' he said to me as he passed; a-screwin' and a-screwin' out I don't like it I'm a-goin' 'ome I am I went on to the crowd There were really I should think two or three hundred people elbowing and jostling one another the one or two ladies there being by no means the least active He's fallen in the pit! cried some one Keep back! said several The crowd swayed a little and I elbowed my way through Every one seemed greatly excited I heard a peculiar humming sound from the pit I say! said Ogilvy; help keep these idiots back We don't know what's in the confounded thing you know! I saw a young man a shop assistant in Woking I believe he was standing on the cylinder and trying to scramble out of the hole again The crowd had pushed him in The end of the cylinder was being screwed out from within Nearly two feet of shining screw projected Somebody blundered against me and I narrowly missed being pitched onto the top of the screw I turned and as I did so the screw must have come out for the lid of the cylinder fell upon the gravel with a ringing concussion I stuck my elbow into the person behind me and turned my head towards the Thing again For a moment that circular cavity seemed perfectly black I had the sunset in my eyes I think everyone expected to see a man emerge--possibly something a little unlike us terrestrial men but in all essentials a man I know I did But looking I presently saw something stirring within the shadow: greyish billowy movements one above another and then two luminous disks--like eyes Then something resembling a little grey snake about the thickness of a walking stick coiled up out of the writhing middle and wriggled in the air towards me--and then another A sudden chill came over me There was a loud shriek from a woman behind I half turned keeping my eyes fixed upon the cylinder still from which other tentacles were now projecting and began pushing my way back from the edge of the pit I saw astonishment giving place to horror on the faces of the people about me I heard inarticulate exclamations on all sides There was a general movement backwards I saw the shopman struggling still on the edge of the pit I found myself alone and saw the people on the other side of the pit running off Stent among them I looked again at the cylinder and ungovernable terror gripped me I stood petrified and staring A big greyish rounded bulk the size perhaps of a bear was rising slowly and painfully out of the cylinder As it bulged up and
adult	dread Suddenly the monster vanished It had toppled over the brim of the cylinder and fallen into the pit with a thud like the fall of a great mass of leather I heard it give a peculiar thick cry and forthwith another of these creatures appeared darkly in the deep shadow of the aperture I turned and running madly made for the first group of trees perhaps a hundred yards away; but I ran slantingly and stumbling for I could not avert my face from these things There among some young pine trees and furze bushes I stopped panting and waited further developments The common round the sand pits was dotted with people standing like myself in a half-fascinated terror staring at these creatures or rather at the heaped gravel at the edge of the pit in which they lay And then with a renewed horror I saw a round black object bobbing up and down on the edge of the pit It was the head of the shopman who had fallen in but showing as a little black object against the hot western sun Now he got his shoulder and knee up and again he seemed to slip back until only his head was visible Suddenly he vanished and I could have fancied a faint shriek had reached me I had a momentary impulse to go back and help him that my fears overruled Everything was then quite invisible hidden by the deep pit and the heap of sand that the fall of the cylinder had made Anyone coming along the road from Chobham or Woking would have been amazed at the sight--a dwindling multitude of perhaps a hundred people or more standing in a great irregular circle in ditches behind bushes behind gates and hedges saying little to one another and that in short excited shouts and staring staring hard at a few heaps of sand The barrow of ginger beer stood a queer derelict black against the burning sky and in the sand pits was a row of deserted vehicles with their horses feeding out of nosebags or pawing the ground CHAPTER FIVE THE HEAT-RAY After the glimpse I had had of the Martians emerging from the cylinder in which they had come to the earth from their planet a kind of fascination paralysed my actions I remained standing knee-deep in the heather staring at the mound that hid them I was a battleground of fear and curiosity I did not dare to go back towards the pit but I felt a passionate longing to peer into it I began walking therefore in a big curve seeking some point of vantage and continually looking at the sand heaps that hid these new-comers to our earth Once a leash of thin black whips like the arms of an octopus flashed across the sunset and was immediately withdrawn and afterwards a thin rod rose up joint by joint bearing at its apex a circular disk that spun with a wobbling motion What could be going on there? Most of the spectators had gathered in one or two groups--one a little crowd towards Woking the other a knot of people in the direction of Chobham Evidently they shared my mental conflict There were few near me One man I approached--he was I perceived a neighbour of mine though I did not know his name--and accosted But it was scarcely a time for articulate conversation What ugly _brutes_! he said Good God! What ugly brutes! He repeated this over and over again Did you see a man in the pit? I said; but he made no answer to that We became silent and stood watching for a time side by side deriving I fancy a certain comfort in one another's company Then I shifted my position to a little knoll that gave me the advantage of a yard or more of elevation and when I looked for him presently he was walking towards Woking The sunset faded to twilight before anything further happened The crowd far away on the left towards Woking seemed to grow and I heard now a faint murmur from it The little knot of people towards Chobham dispersed There was scarcely an intimation of movement from the pit It was this as much as anything that gave people courage and I suppose the new arrivals from Woking also helped to restore confidence At any rate as the dusk came on a slow intermittent movement upon the sand pits began a movement that seemed to gather force as the stillness of the evening about the cylinder remained unbroken Vertical black figures in twos and threes would advance stop watch and advance again spreading out as they did so in a thin irregular crescent that promised to enclose the pit in its attenuated horns I too on my side began to move towards the pit Then I saw some cabmen and others had walked boldly into the sand pits and heard the clatter of hoofs and the gride of wheels I saw a lad trundling off the barrow of apples And then within thirty yards of the pit advancing from the direction of Horsell I noted a little black knot of men the foremost of whom was waving a white flag This was the Deputation There had been a hasty consultation and since the Martians were evidently in spite of their repulsive forms
adult	Beyond the pit stood the little wedge of people with the white flag at its apex arrested by these phenomena a little knot of small vertical black shapes upon the black ground As the green smoke arose their faces flashed out pallid green and faded again as it vanished Then slowly the hissing passed into a humming into a long loud droning noise Slowly a humped shape rose out of the pit and the ghost of a beam of light seemed to flicker out from it Forthwith flashes of actual flame a bright glare leaping from one to another sprang from the scattered group of men It was as if some invisible jet impinged upon them and flashed into white flame It was as if each man were suddenly and momentarily turned to fire Then by the light of their own destruction I saw them staggering and falling and their supporters turning to run I stood staring not as yet realising that this was death leaping from man to man in that little distant crowd All I felt was that it was something very strange An almost noiseless and blinding flash of light and a man fell headlong and lay still; and as the unseen shaft of heat passed over them pine trees burst into fire and every dry furze bush became with one dull thud a mass of flames And far away towards Knaphill I saw the flashes of trees and hedges and wooden buildings suddenly set alight It was sweeping round swiftly and steadily this flaming death this invisible inevitable sword of heat I perceived it coming towards me by the flashing bushes it touched and was too astounded and stupefied to stir I heard the crackle of fire in the sand pits and the sudden squeal of a horse that was as suddenly stilled Then it was as if an invisible yet intensely heated finger were drawn through the heather between me and the Martians and all along a curving line beyond the sand pits the dark ground smoked and crackled Something fell with a crash far away to the left where the road from Woking station opens out on the common Forth-with the hissing and humming ceased and the black dome-like object sank slowly out of sight into the pit All this had happened with such swiftness that I had stood motionless dumbfounded and dazzled by the flashes of light Had that death swept through a full circle it must inevitably have slain me in my surprise But it passed and spared me and left the night about me suddenly dark and unfamiliar The undulating common seemed now dark almost to blackness except where its roadways lay grey and pale under the deep blue sky of the early night It was dark and suddenly void of men Overhead the stars were mustering and in the west the sky was still a pale bright almost greenish blue The tops of the pine trees and the roofs of Horsell came out sharp and black against the western afterglow The Martians and their appliances were altogether invisible save for that thin mast upon which their restless mirror wobbled Patches of bush and isolated trees here and there smoked and glowed still and the houses towards Woking station were sending up spires of flame into the stillness of the evening air Nothing was changed save for that and a terrible astonishment The little group of black specks with the flag of white had been swept out of existence and the stillness of the evening so it seemed to me had scarcely been broken It came to me that I was upon this dark common helpless unprotected and alone Suddenly like a thing falling upon me from without came--fear With an effort I turned and began a stumbling run through the heather The fear I felt was no rational fear but a panic terror not only of the Martians but of the dusk and stillness all about me Such an extraordinary effect in unmanning me it had that I ran weeping silently as a child might do Once I had turned I did not dare to look back I remember I felt an extraordinary persuasion that I was being played with that presently when I was upon the very verge of safety this mysterious death--as swift as the passage of light--would leap after me from the pit about the cylinder and strike me down CHAPTER SIX THE HEAT-RAY IN THE CHOBHAM ROAD It is still a matter of wonder how the Martians are able to slay men so swiftly and so silently Many think that in some way they are able to generate an intense heat in a chamber of practically absolute non-conductivity This intense heat they project in a parallel beam against any object they choose by means of a polished parabolic mirror of unknown composition much as the parabolic mirror of a lighthouse projects a beam of light But no one has absolutely proved these details However it is done it is certain that a beam of heat is the essence of the matter Heat and invisible instead of visible light Whatever is combustible flashes into flame at its touch lead runs like water it softens iron cracks and melts glass and when it falls upon water incontinently that explodes into steam
adult	spinning mirror over the sand pits and the newcomers were no doubt soon infected by the excitement of the occasion By half past eight when the Deputation was destroyed there may have been a crowd of three hundred people or more at this place besides those who had left the road to approach the Martians nearer There were three policemen too one of whom was mounted doing their best under instructions from Stent to keep the people back and deter them from approaching the cylinder There was some booing from those more thoughtless and excitable souls to whom a crowd is always an occasion for noise and horse-play Stent and Ogilvy anticipating some possibilities of a collision had telegraphed from Horsell to the barracks as soon as the Martians emerged for the help of a company of soldiers to protect these strange creatures from violence After that they returned to lead that ill-fated advance The description of their death as it was seen by the crowd tallies very closely with my own impressions: the three puffs of green smoke the deep humming note and the flashes of flame But that crowd of people had a far narrower escape than mine Only the fact that a hummock of heathery sand intercepted the lower part of the Heat-Ray saved them Had the elevation of the parabolic mirror been a few yards higher none could have lived to tell the tale They saw the flashes and the men falling and an invisible hand as it were lit the bushes as it hurried towards them through the twilight Then with a whistling note that rose above the droning of the pit the beam swung close over their heads lighting the tops of the beech trees that line the road and splitting the bricks smashing the windows firing the window frames and bringing down in crumbling ruin a portion of the gable of the house nearest the corner In the sudden thud hiss and glare of the igniting trees the panic-stricken crowd seems to have swayed hesitatingly for some moments Sparks and burning twigs began to fall into the road and single leaves like puffs of flame Hats and dresses caught fire Then came a crying from the common There were shrieks and shouts and suddenly a mounted policeman came galloping through the confusion with his hands clasped over his head screaming They're coming! a woman shrieked and incontinently everyone was turning and pushing at those behind in order to clear their way to Woking again They must have bolted as blindly as a flock of sheep Where the road grows narrow and black between the high banks the crowd jammed and a desperate struggle occurred All that crowd did not escape; three persons at least two women and a little boy were crushed and trampled there and left to die amid the terror and the darkness CHAPTER SEVEN HOW I REACHED HOME For my own part I remember nothing of my flight except the stress of blundering against trees and stumbling through the heather All about me gathered the invisible terrors of the Martians; that pitiless sword of heat seemed whirling to and fro flourishing overhead before it descended and smote me out of life I came into the road between the crossroads and Horsell and ran along this to the crossroads At last I could go no further; I was exhausted with the violence of my emotion and of my flight and I staggered and fell by the wayside That was near the bridge that crosses the canal by the gasworks I fell and lay still I must have remained there some time I sat up strangely perplexed For a moment perhaps I could not clearly understand how I came there My terror had fallen from me like a garment My hat had gone and my collar had burst away from its fastener A few minutes before there had only been three real things before me--the immensity of the night and space and nature my own feebleness and anguish and the near approach of death Now it was as if something turned over and the point of view altered abruptly There was no sensible transition from one state of mind to the other I was immediately the self of every day again--a decent ordinary citizen The silent common the impulse of my flight the starting flames were as if they had been in a dream I asked myself had these latter things indeed happened? I could not credit it I rose and walked unsteadily up the steep incline of the bridge My mind was blank wonder My muscles and nerves seemed drained of their strength I dare say I staggered drunkenly A head rose over the arch and the figure of a workman carrying a basket appeared Beside him ran a little boy He passed me wishing me good night I was minded to speak to him but did not I answered his greeting with a meaningless mumble and went on over the bridge Over the Maybury arch a train a billowing tumult of white firelit smoke and a long caterpillar of lighted windows went flying south--clatter clatter clap rap and it had gone A dim group of people talked in the gate of one of the houses in the pretty little row of gables that was called Oriental Terrace It was all so real and so familiar And that behind me! It was frantic fantastic! Such things I told myself could not be Perhaps I am a man of exceptional moods I do not know how far my
adult	People seem fair silly about the common said the woman over the gate What's it all abart? Haven't you heard of the men from Mars? said I; the creatures from Mars? Quite enough said the woman over the gate Thenks ; and all three of them laughed I felt foolish and angry I tried and found I could not tell them what I had seen They laughed again at my broken sentences You'll hear more yet I said and went on to my home I startled my wife at the doorway so haggard was I I went into the dining room sat down drank some wine and so soon as I could collect myself sufficiently I told her the things I had seen The dinner which was a cold one had already been served and remained neglected on the table while I told my story There is one thing I said to allay the fears I had aroused; they are the most sluggish things I ever saw crawl They may keep the pit and kill people who come near them but they cannot get out of it But the horror of them! Don't dear! said my wife knitting her brows and putting her hand on mine Poor Ogilvy! I said To think he may be lying dead there! My wife at least did not find my experience incredible When I saw how deadly white her face was I ceased abruptly They may come here she said again and again I pressed her to take wine and tried to reassure her They can scarcely move I said I began to comfort her and myself by repeating all that Ogilvy had told me of the impossibility of the Martians establishing themselves on the earth In particular I laid stress on the gravitational difficulty On the surface of the earth the force of gravity is three times what it is on the surface of Mars A Martian therefore would weigh three times more than on Mars albeit his muscular strength would be the same His own body would be a cope of lead to him That indeed was the general opinion Both _The Times_ and the _Daily Telegraph_ for instance insisted on it the next morning and both overlooked just as I did two obvious modifying influences The atmosphere of the earth we now know contains far more oxygen or far less argon (whichever way one likes to put it) than does Mars The invigorating influences of this excess of oxygen upon the Martians indisputably did much to counterbalance the increased weight of their bodies And in the second place we all overlooked the fact that such mechanical intelligence as the Martian possessed was quite able to dispense with muscular exertion at a pinch But I did not consider these points at the time and so my reasoning was dead against the chances of the invaders With wine and food the confidence of my own table and the necessity of reassuring my wife I grew by insensible degrees courageous and secure They have done a foolish thing said I fingering my wineglass They are dangerous because no doubt they are mad with terror Perhaps they expected to find no living things--certainly no intelligent living things A shell in the pit said I if the worst comes to the worst will kill them all The intense excitement of the events had no doubt left my perceptive powers in a state of erethism I remember that dinner table with extraordinary vividness even now My dear wife's sweet anxious face peering at me from under the pink lamp shade the white cloth with its silver and glass table furniture--for in those days even philosophical writers had many little luxuries--the crimson-purple wine in my glass are photographically distinct At the end of it I sat tempering nuts with a cigarette regretting Ogilvy's rashness and denouncing the shortsighted timidity of the Martians So some respectable dodo in the Mauritius might have lorded it in his nest and discussed the arrival of that shipful of pitiless sailors in want of animal food We will peck them to death tomorrow my dear I did not know it but that was the last civilised dinner I was to eat for very many strange and terrible days CHAPTER EIGHT FRIDAY NIGHT The most extraordinary thing to my mind of all the strange and wonderful things that happened upon that Friday was the dovetailing of the commonplace habits of our social order with the first
adult	love-making students sat over their books Maybe there was a murmur in the village streets a novel and dominant topic in the public-houses and here and there a messenger or even an eye-witness of the later occurrences caused a whirl of excitement a shouting and a running to and fro; but for the most part the daily routine of working eating drinking sleeping went on as it had done for countless years--as though no planet Mars existed in the sky Even at Woking station and Horsell and Chobham that was the case In Woking junction until a late hour trains were stopping and going on others were shunting on the sidings passengers were alighting and waiting and everything was proceeding in the most ordinary way A boy from the town trenching on Smith's monopoly was selling papers with the afternoon's news The ringing impact of trucks the sharp whistle of the engines from the junction mingled with their shouts of Men from Mars! Excited men came into the station about nine o'clock with incredible tidings and caused no more disturbance than drunkards might have done People rattling Londonwards peered into the darkness outside the carriage windows and saw only a rare flickering vanishing spark dance up from the direction of Horsell a red glow and a thin veil of smoke driving across the stars and thought that nothing more serious than a heath fire was happening It was only round the edge of the common that any disturbance was perceptible There were half a dozen villas burning on the Woking border There were lights in all the houses on the common side of the three villages and the people there kept awake till dawn A curious crowd lingered restlessly people coming and going but the crowd remaining both on the Chobham and Horsell bridges One or two adventurous souls it was afterwards found went into the darkness and crawled quite near the Martians; but they never returned for now and again a light-ray like the beam of a warship's searchlight swept the common and the Heat-Ray was ready to follow Save for such that big area of common was silent and desolate and the charred bodies lay about on it all night under the stars and all the next day A noise of hammering from the pit was heard by many people So you have the state of things on Friday night In the centre sticking into the skin of our old planet Earth like a poisoned dart was this cylinder But the poison was scarcely working yet Around it was a patch of silent common smouldering in places and with a few dark dimly seen objects lying in contorted attitudes here and there Here and there was a burning bush or tree Beyond was a fringe of excitement and farther than that fringe the inflammation had not crept as yet In the rest of the world the stream of life still flowed as it had flowed for immemorial years The fever of war that would presently clog vein and artery deaden nerve and destroy brain had still to develop All night long the Martians were hammering and stirring sleepless indefatigable at work upon the machines they were making ready and ever and again a puff of greenish-white smoke whirled up to the starlit sky About eleven a company of soldiers came through Horsell and deployed along the edge of the common to form a cordon Later a second company marched through Chobham to deploy on the north side of the common Several officers from the Inkerman barracks had been on the common earlier in the day and one Major Eden was reported to be missing The colonel of the regiment came to the Chobham bridge and was busy questioning the crowd at midnight The military authorities were certainly alive to the seriousness of the business About eleven the next morning's papers were able to say a squadron of hussars two Maxims and about four hundred men of the Cardigan regiment started from Aldershot A few seconds after midnight the crowd in the Chertsey road Woking saw a star fall from heaven into the pine woods to the northwest It had a greenish colour and caused a silent brightness like summer lightning This was the second cylinder CHAPTER NINE THE FIGHTING BEGINS Saturday lives in my memory as a day of suspense It was a day of lassitude too hot and close with I am told a rapidly fluctuating barometer I had slept but little though my wife had succeeded in sleeping and I rose early I went into my garden before breakfast and stood listening but towards the common there was nothing stirring but a lark The milkman came as usual I heard the rattle of his chariot and I went round to the side gate to ask the latest news He told me that during the night the Martians had been surrounded by troops and that guns were expected Then--a familiar reassuring note--I heard a train running towards Woking They aren't to be killed said the milkman if that can possibly be avoided I saw my neighbour gardening chatted with him for a time and then strolled in to breakfast It was a most unexceptional morning My neighbour was of opinion that the troops would be able to capture or
adult	towards the common Under the railway bridge I found a group of soldiers--sappers I think men in small round caps dirty red jackets unbuttoned and showing their blue shirts dark trousers and boots coming to the calf They told me no one was allowed over the canal and looking along the road towards the bridge I saw one of the Cardigan men standing sentinel there I talked with these soldiers for a time; I told them of my sight of the Martians on the previous evening None of them had seen the Martians and they had but the vaguest ideas of them so that they plied me with questions They said that they did not know who had authorised the movements of the troops; their idea was that a dispute had arisen at the Horse Guards The ordinary sapper is a great deal better educated than the common soldier and they discussed the peculiar conditions of the possible fight with some acuteness I described the Heat-Ray to them and they began to argue among themselves Crawl up under cover and rush 'em say I said one Get aht! said another What's cover against this 'ere 'eat? Sticks to cook yer! What we got to do is to go as near as the ground'll let us and then drive a trench Blow yer trenches! You always want trenches; you ought to ha' been born a rabbit Snippy Ain't they got any necks then? said a third abruptly--a little contemplative dark man smoking a pipe I repeated my description Octopuses said he that's what I calls 'em Talk about fishers of men--fighters of fish it is this time! It ain't no murder killing beasts like that said the first speaker Why not shell the darned things strite off and finish 'em? said the little dark man You carn tell what they might do Where's your shells? said the first speaker There ain't no time Do it in a rush that's my tip and do it at once So they discussed it After a while I left them and went on to the railway station to get as many morning papers as I could But I will not weary the reader with a description of that long morning and of the longer afternoon I did not succeed in getting a glimpse of the common for even Horsell and Chobham church towers were in the hands of the military authorities The soldiers I addressed didn't know anything; the officers were mysterious as well as busy I found people in the town quite secure again in the presence of the military and I heard for the first time from Marshall the tobacconist that his son was among the dead on the common The soldiers had made the people on the outskirts of Horsell lock up and leave their houses I got back to lunch about two very tired for as I have said the day was extremely hot and dull; and in order to refresh myself I took a cold bath in the afternoon About half past four I went up to the railway station to get an evening paper for the morning papers had contained only a very inaccurate description of the killing of Stent Henderson Ogilvy and the others But there was little I didn't know The Martians did not show an inch of themselves They seemed busy in their pit and there was a sound of hammering and an almost continuous streamer of smoke Apparently they were busy getting ready for a struggle Fresh attempts have been made to signal but without success was the stereotyped formula of the papers A sapper told me it was done by a man in a ditch with a flag on a long pole The Martians took as much notice of such advances as we should of the lowing of a cow I must confess the sight of all this armament all this preparation greatly excited me My imagination became belligerent and defeated the invaders in a dozen striking ways; something of my schoolboy dreams of battle and heroism came back It hardly seemed a fair fight to me at that time They seemed very helpless in that pit of theirs About three o'clock there began the thud of a gun at measured intervals from Chertsey or Addlestone I learned that the smouldering pine wood into which the second cylinder had fallen was being shelled in the hope of destroying that object before it opened It was only about five however that a field gun reached Chobham for use against the first body of Martians About six in the evening as I sat at tea with my wife in the summerhouse talking vigorously about the battle that was lowering upon us I heard a muffled detonation from the common and immediately after a gust of firing Close on the heels of that came a violent rattling crash quite close to us that shook the ground; and starting out upon the lawn I saw the tops of the trees about the Oriental College burst into smoky red flame and the tower of the little church beside it slide down into ruin The pinnacle of the mosque had vanished and the roof line of the college itself looked as if a hundred-ton gun had been at work upon it One of our chimneys cracked as if a shot had hit it flew and a piece of it came clattering down the tiles and made a heap of broken red fragments upon the flower bed by my study window I and my wife stood amazed Then I realised that the crest of
adult	Down the hill I saw a bevy of hussars ride under the railway bridge; three galloped through the open gates of the Oriental College; two others dismounted and began running from house to house The sun shining through the smoke that drove up from the tops of the trees seemed blood red and threw an unfamiliar lurid light upon everything Stop here said I; you are safe here ; and I started off at once for the Spotted Dog for I knew the landlord had a horse and dog cart I ran for I perceived that in a moment everyone upon this side of the hill would be moving I found him in his bar quite unaware of what was going on behind his house A man stood with his back to me talking to him I must have a pound said the landlord and I've no one to drive it I'll give you two said I over the stranger's shoulder What for? And I'll bring it back by midnight I said Lord! said the landlord; what's the hurry? I'm selling my bit of a pig Two pounds and you bring it back? What's going on now? I explained hastily that I had to leave my home and so secured the dog cart At the time it did not seem to me nearly so urgent that the landlord should leave his I took care to have the cart there and then drove it off down the road and leaving it in charge of my wife and servant rushed into my house and packed a few valuables such plate as we had and so forth The beech trees below the house were burning while I did this and the palings up the road glowed red While I was occupied in this way one of the dismounted hussars came running up He was going from house to house warning people to leave He was going on as I came out of my front door lugging my treasures done up in a tablecloth I shouted after him: What news? He turned stared bawled something about crawling out in a thing like a dish cover and ran on to the gate of the house at the crest A sudden whirl of black smoke driving across the road hid him for a moment I ran to my neighbour's door and rapped to satisfy myself of what I already knew that his wife had gone to London with him and had locked up their house I went in again according to my promise to get my servant's box lugged it out clapped it beside her on the tail of the dog cart and then caught the reins and jumped up into the driver's seat beside my wife In another moment we were clear of the smoke and noise and spanking down the opposite slope of Maybury Hill towards Old Woking In front was a quiet sunny landscape a wheat field ahead on either side of the road and the Maybury Inn with its swinging sign I saw the doctor's cart ahead of me At the bottom of the hill I turned my head to look at the hillside I was leaving Thick streamers of black smoke shot with threads of red fire were driving up into the still air and throwing dark shadows upon the green treetops eastward The smoke already extended far away to the east and west--to the Byfleet pine woods eastward and to Woking on the west The road was dotted with people running towards us And very faint now but very distinct through the hot quiet air one heard the whirr of a machine-gun that was presently stilled and an intermittent cracking of rifles Apparently the Martians were setting fire to everything within range of their Heat-Ray I am not an expert driver and I had immediately to turn my attention to the horse When I looked back again the second hill had hidden the black smoke I slashed the horse with the whip and gave him a loose rein until Woking and Send lay between us and that quivering tumult I overtook and passed the doctor between Woking and Send CHAPTER TEN IN THE STORM Leatherhead is about twelve miles from Maybury Hill The scent of hay was in the air through the lush meadows beyond Pyrford and the hedges on either side were sweet and gay with multitudes of dog-roses The heavy firing that had broken out while we were driving down Maybury Hill ceased as abruptly as it began leaving the evening very peaceful and still We got to Leatherhead without misadventure about nine o'clock and the horse had an hour's rest while I took supper with my cousins and commended my wife to their care My wife was curiously silent throughout the drive and seemed oppressed with forebodings of evil I talked to her reassuringly pointing out that the Martians were tied to the Pit by sheer heaviness and at the utmost could but crawl a little out of it; but she answered only in monosyllables Had it not been for my promise to the innkeeper she would I think have urged me to stay in Leatherhead that night Would that I had! Her face I remember was very white as we parted For my own part I had been feverishly excited all day Something very like the war fever that occasionally runs through a civilised
adult	returned and not through Send and Old Woking) I saw along the western horizon a blood-red glow which as I drew nearer crept slowly up the sky The driving clouds of the gathering thunderstorm mingled there with masses of black and red smoke Ripley Street was deserted and except for a lighted window or so the village showed not a sign of life; but I narrowly escaped an accident at the corner of the road to Pyrford where a knot of people stood with their backs to me They said nothing to me as I passed I do not know what they knew of the things happening beyond the hill nor do I know if the silent houses I passed on my way were sleeping securely or deserted and empty or harassed and watching against the terror of the night From Ripley until I came through Pyrford I was in the valley of the Wey and the red glare was hidden from me As I ascended the little hill beyond Pyrford Church the glare came into view again and the trees about me shivered with the first intimation of the storm that was upon me Then I heard midnight pealing out from Pyrford Church behind me and then came the silhouette of Maybury Hill with its tree-tops and roofs black and sharp against the red Even as I beheld this a lurid green glare lit the road about me and showed the distant woods towards Addlestone I felt a tug at the reins I saw that the driving clouds had been pierced as it were by a thread of green fire suddenly lighting their confusion and falling into the field to my left It was the third falling star! Close on its apparition and blindingly violet by contrast danced out the first lightning of the gathering storm and the thunder burst like a rocket overhead The horse took the bit between his teeth and bolted A moderate incline runs towards the foot of Maybury Hill and down this we clattered Once the lightning had begun it went on in as rapid a succession of flashes as I have ever seen The thunderclaps treading one on the heels of another and with a strange crackling accompaniment sounded more like the working of a gigantic electric machine than the usual detonating reverberations The flickering light was blinding and confusing and a thin hail smote gustily at my face as I drove down the slope At first I regarded little but the road before me and then abruptly my attention was arrested by something that was moving rapidly down the opposite slope of Maybury Hill At first I took it for the wet roof of a house but one flash following another showed it to be in swift rolling movement It was an elusive vision--a moment of bewildering darkness and then in a flash like daylight the red masses of the Orphanage near the crest of the hill the green tops of the pine trees and this problematical object came out clear and sharp and bright And this Thing I saw! How can I describe it? A monstrous tripod higher than many houses striding over the young pine trees and smashing them aside in its career; a walking engine of glittering metal striding now across the heather; articulate ropes of steel dangling from it and the clattering tumult of its passage mingling with the riot of the thunder A flash and it came out vividly heeling over one way with two feet in the air to vanish and reappear almost instantly as it seemed with the next flash a hundred yards nearer Can you imagine a milking stool tilted and bowled violently along the ground? That was the impression those instant flashes gave But instead of a milking stool imagine it a great body of machinery on a tripod stand Then suddenly the trees in the pine wood ahead of me were parted as brittle reeds are parted by a man thrusting through them; they were snapped off and driven headlong and a second huge tripod appeared rushing as it seemed headlong towards me And I was galloping hard to meet it! At the sight of the second monster my nerve went altogether Not stopping to look again I wrenched the horse's head hard round to the right and in another moment the dog cart had heeled over upon the horse; the shafts smashed noisily and I was flung sideways and fell heavily into a shallow pool of water I crawled out almost immediately and crouched my feet still in the water under a clump of furze The horse lay motionless (his neck was broken poor brute!) and by the lightning flashes I saw the black bulk of the overturned dog cart and the silhouette of the wheel still spinning slowly In another moment the colossal mechanism went striding by me and passed uphill towards Pyrford Seen nearer the Thing was incredibly strange for it was no mere insensate machine driving on its way Machine it was with a ringing metallic pace and long flexible glittering tentacles (one of which gripped a young pine tree) swinging and rattling about its strange body It picked its road as it went striding along and the brazen hood that surmounted it moved to and fro with the inevitable suggestion of a head looking about Behind the main body was a huge mass of white metal like a gigantic fisherman's basket and puffs of green smoke squirted out from the joints of the limbs as the monster swept by me And in an instant it was gone So much I saw then all vaguely for the flickering of the lightning in blinding highlights and dense black shadows As it passed it set up an exultant deafening howl that drowned the thunder-- Aloo! Aloo! --and in another minute it was with its companion half a mile away stooping over something in the field I have no doubt this Thing in the field was the third of the ten
adult	Under cover of this I pushed on wet and shivering now towards my own house I walked among the trees trying to find the footpath It was very dark indeed in the wood for the lightning was now becoming infrequent and the hail which was pouring down in a torrent fell in columns through the gaps in the heavy foliage If I had fully realised the meaning of all the things I had seen I should have immediately worked my way round through Byfleet to Street Cobham and so gone back to rejoin my wife at Leatherhead But that night the strangeness of things about me and my physical wretchedness prevented me for I was bruised weary wet to the skin deafened and blinded by the storm I had a vague idea of going on to my own house and that was as much motive as I had I staggered through the trees fell into a ditch and bruised my knees against a plank and finally splashed out into the lane that ran down from the College Arms I say splashed for the storm water was sweeping the sand down the hill in a muddy torrent There in the darkness a man blundered into me and sent me reeling back He gave a cry of terror sprang sideways and rushed on before I could gather my wits sufficiently to speak to him So heavy was the stress of the storm just at this place that I had the hardest task to win my way up the hill I went close up to the fence on the left and worked my way along its palings Near the top I stumbled upon something soft and by a flash of lightning saw between my feet a heap of black broadcloth and a pair of boots Before I could distinguish clearly how the man lay the flicker of light had passed I stood over him waiting for the next flash When it came I saw that he was a sturdy man cheaply but not shabbily dressed; his head was bent under his body and he lay crumpled up close to the fence as though he had been flung violently against it Overcoming the repugnance natural to one who had never before touched a dead body I stooped and turned him over to feel for his heart He was quite dead Apparently his neck had been broken The lightning flashed for a third time and his face leaped upon me I sprang to my feet It was the landlord of the Spotted Dog whose conveyance I had taken I stepped over him gingerly and pushed on up the hill I made my way by the police station and the College Arms towards my own house Nothing was burning on the hillside though from the common there still came a red glare and a rolling tumult of ruddy smoke beating up against the drenching hail So far as I could see by the flashes the houses about me were mostly uninjured By the College Arms a dark heap lay in the road Down the road towards Maybury Bridge there were voices and the sound of feet but I had not the courage to shout or to go to them I let myself in with my latchkey closed locked and bolted the door staggered to the foot of the staircase and sat down My imagination was full of those striding metallic monsters and of the dead body smashed against the fence I crouched at the foot of the staircase with my back to the wall shivering violently CHAPTER ELEVEN AT THE WINDOW I have already said that my storms of emotion have a trick of exhausting themselves After a time I discovered that I was cold and wet and with little pools of water about me on the stair carpet I got up almost mechanically went into the dining room and drank some whiskey and then I was moved to change my clothes After I had done that I went upstairs to my study but why I did so I do not know The window of my study looks over the trees and the railway towards Horsell Common In the hurry of our departure this window had been left open The passage was dark and by contrast with the picture the window frame enclosed the side of the room seemed impenetrably dark I stopped short in the doorway The thunderstorm had passed The towers of the Oriental College and the pine trees about it had gone and very far away lit by a vivid red glare the common about the sand pits was visible Across the light huge black shapes grotesque and strange moved busily to and fro It seemed indeed as if the whole country in that direction was on fire--a broad hillside set with minute tongues of flame swaying and writhing with the gusts of the dying storm and throwing a red reflection upon the cloud-scud above Every now and then a haze of smoke from some nearer conflagration drove across the window and hid the Martian shapes I could not see what they were doing nor the clear form of them nor recognise the black objects they were busied upon Neither could I see the nearer fire though the reflections of it danced on the wall and ceiling of the study A sharp resinous tang of burning was in the air I closed the door noiselessly and crept towards the window As I
adult	a means to the entire gratification of her passion NOVEL IV - Dom Felice instructs Fra Puccio how to attain blessedness by doing a penance Fra Puccio does the penance and meanwhile Dom Felice has a good time with Fra Puccio's wife NOVEL V - Zima gives a palfrey to Messer Francesco Vergellesi who in return suffers him to speak with his wife She keeping silence he answers in her stead and the sequel is in accordance with his answer NOVEL VI - Ricciardo Minutolo loves the wife of Filippello Fighinolfi and knowing her to be jealous makes her believe that his own wife is to meet Filippello at a bagnio on the ensuing day; whereby she is induced to go thither where thinking to have been with her husband she discovers that she has tarried with Ricciardo NOVEL VII - Tedaldo being in disfavour with his lady departs from Florence He returns thither after a while in the guise of a pilgrim has speech of his lady and makes her sensible of her fault Her husband convicted of slaying him he delivers from peril of death reconciles him with his brothers and thereafter discreetly enjoys his lady NOVEL VIII Ferondo having taken a certain powder is interred for dead; is disinterred by the abbot who enjoys his wife; is put in prison and taught to believe that he is in purgatory; is then resuscitated and rears as his own a boy begotten by the abbot upon his wife NOVEL IX - Gillette of Narbonne cures the King of France of a fistula craves for spouse Bertrand de Roussillon who marries her against his will and hies him in despite to Florence where as he courts a young woman Gillette lies with him in her stead and has two sons by him; for which cause he afterwards takes her into favour and entreats her as his wife NOVEL X - Alibech turns hermit and is taught by Rustico a monk how the Devil is put in hell She is afterwards conveyed thence and becomes the wife of Neerbale - FOURTH DAY - NOVEL I - Tancred Prince of Salerno slays his daughter's lover and sends her his heart in a golden cup: she pours upon it a poisonous distillation which she drinks and dies NOVEL II - Fra Alberto gives a lady to understand that she is beloved of the Angel Gabriel in whose shape he lies with her sundry times; afterward for fear of her kinsmen he flings himself forth of her house and finds shelter in the house of a poor man who on the morrow leads him in the guise of a wild man into the piazza where being recognized he is apprehended by his brethren and imprisoned NOVEL III - Three young men love three sisters and flee with them to Crete The eldest of the sisters slays her lover for jealousy The second saves the life of the first by yielding herself to the Duke of Crete Her lover slays her and makes off with the first: the third sister and her lover are charged with the murder are arrested and confess the crime They escape death by bribing the guards flee destitute to Rhodes and there in destitution die NOVEL IV - Gerbino in breach of the plighted faith of his grandfather King Guglielmo attacks a ship of the King of Tunis to rescue thence his daughter She being slain by those aboard the ship he slays them and afterwards he is beheaded NOVEL V - Lisabetta's brothers slay her lover: he appears to her in a dream and shews her where he is buried: she privily disinters the head and sets it in a pot of basil whereon she daily weeps a great while The pot being taken from her by her brothers she dies not long after NOVEL VI - Andreuola loves Gabriotto: she tells him a dream that she has had; he tells her a dream of his own and dies suddenly in her arms While she and her maid are carrying his corpse to his house they are taken by the Signory She tells how the matter stands is threatened with violence by the Podesta but will not brook it Her father hears how she is bested and her innocence being established causes her to be set at large; but she being minded to tarry no longer in the world becomes a nun NOVEL VII - Simona loves Pasquino; they are together in a garden Pasquino rubs a leaf of sage against his teeth and dies; Simona is arrested and with intent to shew the judge how Pasquino died rubs one of the leaves of the same plant against her teeth and likewise dies NOVEL VIII - Girolamo loves Salvestra: yielding to his mother's prayers he goes to Paris; he returns to find Salvestra married; he enters her house by stealth lays himself by her side and dies; he is borne to the church where Salvestra lays herself by his side and dies Nova IX - Sieur Guillaume de Roussillon slays his wife's paramour Sieur Guillaume de Cabestaing and gives her his heart to eat She coming to wit thereof throws herself from a high window to the ground and dies and is buried with her lover NOVEL X - The wife of a leech deeming her lover who has taken an opiate to be dead puts him in a chest which with him therein two usurers carry off to their house He comes to himself and is taken for a thief; but the lady's maid giving the Signory to understand that she had put him in the chest which the usurers stole he escapes the gallows and the usurers are mulcted in moneys for the theft of the chest ILLUSTRATIONS TO THE DECAMERON
adult	Son of a merchant Boccaccio di Chellino di Buonaiuto of Certaldo in Val d'Elsa a little town about midway between Empoli and Siena but within the Florentine contado Giovanni Boccaccio was born most probably at Paris in the year 1313 His mother at any rate was a Frenchwoman whom his father seduced during a sojourn at Paris and afterwards deserted So much as this Boccaccio has himself told us under a transparent veil of allegory in his Ameto Of his mother we would fain know more for his wit has in it a quality especially noticeable in the Tenth Novel of the Sixth Day of the Decameron which marks him out as the forerunner of Rabelais and prompts us to ask how much more his genius may have owed to his French ancestry His father was of sufficient standing in Florence to be chosen Prior in 1321; but this brief term of office--but two months--was his last as well as his first experience of public life Of Boccaccio's early years we know nothing more than that his first preceptor was the Florentine grammarian Giovanni da Strada father of the poet Zanobi da Strada and that when he was about ten years old he was bound apprentice to a merchant with whom he spent the next six years at Paris whence he returned to Florence with an inveterate repugnance to commerce His father then proposed to make a canonist of him; but the study of Gratian proved hardly more congenial than the routine of the counting-house to the lad who had already evinced a taste for letters; and a sojourn at Naples where under the regime of the enlightened King Robert there were coteries of learned men and even Greek was not altogether unknown decided his future career According to Filippo Villani his choice was finally fixed by a visit to the tomb of Vergil on the Via Puteolana and though the modern critical spirit is apt to discount such stories there can be no doubt that such a pilgrimage would be apt to make a deep and perhaps enduring impression upon a nature ardent and sensitive and already conscious of extraordinary powers His stay at Naples was also in another respect a turning point in his life; for it was there that as we gather from the Filocopo he first saw the blonde beauty Maria natural daughter of King Robert whom he has immortalized as Fiammetta The place was the church of San Lorenzo the day the 26th of March 1334 Boccaccio's admiring gaze was observed by the lady who though married proved no Laura and forthwith returned his love in equal measure Their liaison lasted several years during which Boccaccio recorded the various phases of their passion with exemplary assiduity in verse and prose Besides paying her due and discreet homage in sonnet and canzone he associated her in one way or another not only with the Filocopo (his prose romance of Florio and Biancofiore which he professes to have written to pleasure her) but with the Ameto the Amorosa Visione the Teseide and the Filostrato; and in L'Amorosa Fiammetta he wove out of their relations a romance in which her lover who is there called Pamfilo plays Aeneas to her Dido though with somewhat less tragic consequences The Proem to the Decameron shews us the after-glow of his passion; the lady herself appears as one of the honourable company and her portrait as in the act of receiving the laurel wreath at the close of the Fourth Day is a masterpiece of tender and delicate delineation Boccaccio appears to have been recalled to Florence by his father in 1341; and it was probably in that year that he wrote L'Amorosa Fiammetta and the allegorical prose pastoral (with songs interspersed) which he entitled Ameto and in which Fiammetta masquerades in green as one of the nymphs The Amorosa Visione written about the same time is not only an allegory but an acrostic the initial letters of its fifteen hundred triplets composing two sonnets and a ballade in honour of Fiammetta whom he here for once ventures to call by her true name Later came the Teseide or romance of Palamon and Arcite the first extant rendering of the story in twelve books and the Filostrato nine books of the loves and woes of Troilus and Cressida Both these poems are in ottava rima a metre which if Boccaccio did not invent it he was the first to apply to such a purpose Both works were dedicated to Fiammetta A graceful idyll in the same metre Ninfale Fiesolano was written later probably at Naples in 1345 King Robert was then dead but Boccaccio enjoyed the favour of Queen Joan of somewhat doubtful memory at whose instance he hints in one of his later letters that he wrote the Decameron Without impugning Boccaccio's veracity we can hardly but think that the Decameron would have seen the light though Queen Joan had withheld her encouragement He had probably been long meditating it and gathering materials for it and we may well suppose that the outbreak of the plague in 1348 by furnishing him with a sombre background to heighten the effect of his motley pageant had far more to do with accelerating the composition than aught that Queen Joan may have said That Boccaccio was not at Florence during the pestilence is certain; but we need not therefore doubt the substantial accuracy of his marvellous description of the state of the stricken city for the course and consequences of the terrible visitation must have been much the same in all parts of Italy and as to Florence in particular Boccaccio could have no difficulty in obtaining detailed and abundant information from credible eye-witnesses The introduction of Fiammetta who was in all probability at Naples at the time and in any case was not a Florentine shews however that he is by no means to be taken literally and renders it extremely probable that the facetious irrepressible and privileged Dioneo is no other than himself At the same time we cannot deem it either impossible or very unlikely that in the general relaxation of morale which the plague brought in its train refuge from care and fear was sought in the diversions which he describes by some of those who had country-seats to which to withdraw and whether the contado was that of Florence or that of Naples is a matter of no considerable importance (1) It is probable that Boccaccio's father was one of the victims of the pestilence; for he was dead in 1350 when his son returned to Florence to live thenceforth on the modest patrimony which he inherited It must have been about this time that he formed an intimacy with Petrarch which notwithstanding marked diversity of temperament character and pursuits was destined to be broken only by death Despite his complaints of the malevolence of his critics in the Proem to the Fourth Day of the Decameron he had no lack of appreciation on the part of his fellow-citizens and was employed by the Republic on several missions; to Bologna probably with the view of averting the submission of that city to the Visconti in 1350; to Petrarch at Padua in March 1351 with a letter from the Priors announcing his restitution to citizenship and inviting him to return to Florence and assume the rectorship of the newly
adult	monitions and revelations of a dying Carthusian of Siena One of the revelations concerned a matter which Boccaccio had supposed to be known only to Petrarch and himself He accordingly confided his anxiety to Petrarch who persuaded him to amend his life without renouncing the world In 1362 he revisited Naples and in the following year spent three months with Petrarch at Venice In 1365 he was sent by the Republic of Florence on a mission of conciliation to Pope Urban V at Avignon He was employed on a like errand on the Pope's return to Rome in 1367 In 1368 he revisited Venice and in 1371 Naples; but in May 1372 he returned to Florence where on 25th August 1373 he was appointed lecturer on the Divina Commedia with a yearly stipend of 100 fiorini d'oro His lectures of which the first was delivered in the church of San Stefano near the Ponte Vecchio were discontinued owing to ill health doubtless aggravated by the distress which the death of Petrarch (20th July 1374) could not but cause him when he had got no farther than the seventeenth Canto of the Inferno His commentary is still occasionally quoted He died perhaps in the odour of sanctity for in later life he was a diligent collector of relics at Certaldo on 21st December 1375 and was buried in the parish church His tomb was desecrated and his remains were dispersed owing it is said to a misunderstanding towards the close of the eighteenth century His library which by his direction was placed in the Convent of Santo Spirito at Florence was destroyed by fire about a century after his death Besides the De Genealogia Deorum Boccaccio wrote other treatises in Latin which need not here be specified and sixteen Eclogues in the same language of which he was by no means a master As for his minor works in the vernacular the earlier of them shew that he had not as yet wrought himself free from the conventionalism which the polite literature of Italy inherited from the Sicilians It is therefore inevitable that the twentieth century should find the Filocopo Ameto and Amorosa Visione tedious reading The Teseide determined the form in which Pulci Boiardo Bello Ariosto Tasso and with a slight modification our own Spenser were to write but its readers are now few and are not likely ever again to be numerous Chaucer drew upon it for the Knight's Tale but it is at any rate arguable that his retrenchment of its perhaps inordinate length was judicious and that what he gave was better than what he borrowed Still that it had such a redactor as Chaucer is no small testimony to its merit; nor was it only in the Knight's Tale that he was indebted to it: the description of the Temple of Love in the Parlement of Foules is taken almost word for word from it Even more considerable and conspicuous is Chaucer's obligation to Boccaccio in the Troilus and Criseyde about a third of which is borrowed from the Filostrato Nor is it a little remarkable that the same man that in the Teseide and Filostrato founded the chivalrous epic should also and in the same period of his literary activity have written the first and not the least powerful and artistic of psychologic romances for even such is L'Amorosa Fiammetta But whatever may be the final verdict of criticism upon these minor works of Boccaccio it is impossible to imagine an age in which the Decameron will fail of general recognition as in point alike of invention as of style one of the most notable creations of human genius Of few books are the sources so recondite insomuch that it seems to be certain that in the main they must have be merely oral tradition and few have exercised so wide and mighty an influence The profound many-sided and intimate knowledge of human nature which it evinces its vast variety of incident its wealth of tears and laughter its copious and felicitous diction inevitably apt for every occasion and notwithstanding the frequent harshness and occasional obscurity of its at times tangled at times laboured periods its sustained energy and animation of style must ever ensure for this human comedy unchallenged rank among the literary masterpieces that are truly immortal The Decameron was among the earliest of printed books Venice leading the way with a folio edition in 1471 Mantua following suit in 1472 and Vicenza in 1478 A folio edition adorned with most graceful wood- engravings was published at Venice in 1492 Notwithstanding the freedom with which in divers passages Boccaccio reflected on the morals of the clergy the Roman Curia spared the book which the austere Savonarola condemned to the flames The tradition that the Decameron was among the pile of vanities burned by Savonarola in the Piazza della Signoria on the last day of the Carnival of 1497 little more than a year before he was himself burned there is so intrinsically probable--and accords so well with the extreme paucity of early copies of the work--that it would be the very perversity of scepticism to doubt it It is by no means to the credit of our country that except to scholars it long remained in England an almost entirely closed book (2) Indeed the first nominally complete English translation a sadly mutilated and garbled rendering of the French version by Antoine Le Macon did not appear till 1620 and though successive redactions brought it nearer to the original it remained at the best but a sorry faute de mieux Such as it was however our forefathers were perforce fain to be content with it The first Englishman to render the whole Decameron direct from the Italian was Mr John Payne; but his work printed for the Villon Society in 1886 was only for private circulation and those least inclined to disparage its merits may deem its style somewhat too archaic and stilted adequately to render the vigour and vivacity of the original Accordingly in the present version an attempt has been made to hit the mean between archaism and modernism and to secure as much freedom and spirit as is compatible with substantial accuracy (1) As to the palaces in which the scene is laid Manni (Istoria del Decamerone Par ii cap ii ) identifies the first with a villa near Fiesole which can be no other than the Villa Palmieri and the second (ib cap lxxvi ) with the Podere della Fonte or so-called Villa del Boccaccio near Camerata Baldelli's theory adopted by Mrs Janet Ann Ross (Florentine Villas 1901) that the Villa di Poggio Gherardi was the first and the Villa Palmieri the second retreat is not to be reconciled with Boccaccio's descriptions The Villa Palmieri is not remote enough for the second and more sequestered retreat nor is it as that is said to have been situate
adult	found it in others: among whom if any had ever need thereof or found it precious or delectable I may be numbered; seeing that from my early youth even to the present I was beyond measure aflame with a most aspiring and noble love (1) more perhaps than were I to enlarge upon it would seem to accord with my lowly condition Whereby among people of discernment to whose knowledge it had come I had much praise and high esteem but nevertheless extreme discomfort and suffering not indeed by reason of cruelty on the part of the beloved lady but through superabundant ardour engendered in the soul by ill-bridled desire; the which as it allowed me no reasonable period of quiescence frequently occasioned me an inordinate distress In which distress so much relief was afforded me by the delectable discourse of a friend and his commendable consolations that I entertain a very solid conviction that to them I owe it that I am not dead But as it pleased Him who being infinite has assigned by immutable law an end to all things mundane my love beyond all other fervent and neither to be broken nor bent by any force of determination or counsel of prudence or fear of manifest shame or ensuing danger did nevertheless in course of time me abate of its own accord in such wise that it has now left nought of itself in my mind but that pleasure which it is wont to afford to him who does not adventure too far out in navigating its deep seas; so that whereas it was used to be grievous now all discomfort being done away I find that which remains to be delightful But the cessation of the pain has not banished the memory of the kind offices done me by those who shared by sympathy the burden of my griefs; nor will it ever I believe pass from me except by death And as among the virtues gratitude is in my judgment most especially to be commended and ingratitude in equal measure to be censured therefore that I show myself not ungrateful I have resolved now that I may call myself to endeavour in return for what I have received to afford so far as in me lies some solace if not to those who succoured and who perchance by reason of their good sense or good fortune need it not at least to such as may be apt to receive it And though my support or comfort so to say may be of little avail to the needy nevertheless it seems to me meet to offer it most readily where the need is most apparent because it will there be most serviceable and also most kindly received Who will deny that it should be given for all that it may be worth to gentle ladies much rather than to men? Within their soft bosoms betwixt fear and shame they harbour secret fires of love and how much of strength concealment adds to those fires they know who have proved it Moreover restrained by the will the caprice the commandment of fathers mothers brothers and husbands confined most part of their time within the narrow compass of their chambers they live so to say a life of vacant ease and yearning and renouncing in the same moment meditate divers matters which cannot all be cheerful If thereby a melancholy bred of amorous desire make entrance into their minds it is like to tarry there to their sore distress unless it be dispelled by a change of ideas Besides which they have much less power to support such a weight than men For when men are enamoured their case is very different as we may readily perceive They if they are afflicted by a melancholy and heaviness of mood have many ways of relief and diversion; they may go where they will may hear and see many things may hawk hunt fish ride play or traffic By which means all are able to compose their minds either in whole or in part and repair the ravage wrought by the dumpish mood at least for some space of time; and shortly after by one way or another either solace ensues or the dumps become less grievous Wherefore in some measure to compensate the injustice of Fortune which to those whose strength is least as we see it to be in the delicate frames of ladies has been most niggard of support I for the succour and diversion of such of them as love (for others may find sufficient solace in the needle and the spindle and the reel) do intend to recount one hundred Novels or Fables or Parables or Stories as we may please to call them which were recounted in ten days by an honourable company of seven ladies and three young men in the time of the late mortal pestilence as also some canzonets sung by the said ladies for their delectation In which pleasant novels will be found some passages of love rudely crossed with other courses of events of which the issues are felicitous in times as well modern as ancient: from which stories the said ladies who shall read them may derive both pleasure from the entertaining matters set forth therein and also good counsel in that they may learn what to shun and likewise what to pursue Which cannot I believe come to pass unless the dumps be banished by diversion of mind And if it so happen (as God grant it may) let them give thanks to Love who liberating me from his fetters has given me the power to devote myself to their gratification (1) For Fiammetta i e Maria natural daughter of Robert King of Naples -- Beginneth here the first day of the Decameron in which when the author has set forth how it came to pass that the persons who appear hereafter met together for interchange of discourse they under the rule of Pampinea discourse of such matters as most commend themselves to each in turn -- As often most gracious ladies as I bethink me how compassionate you are by nature one and all I do not disguise from myself that the present work must seem to you to have but a heavy and distressful prelude in that it bears upon its very front what must needs revive the sorrowful memory of the late mortal pestilence the course whereof was grievous not merely to eye- witnesses but to all who in any other wise had cognisance of it But I would have you know that you need not therefore be fearful to read further as if your reading were ever to be accompanied by sighs and tears This horrid beginning will be to you even such as to wayfarers is a steep and rugged mountain beyond which stretches a plain most fair and delectable which the toil of the ascent and descent does but serve to render more agreeable to them; for as the last degree of joy brings with it sorrow so misery has ever its sequel of happiness To this brief exordium of woe--brief I say inasmuch as it can be put within the compass of a few letters--succeed forthwith the sweets and delights which I have promised you and which perhaps had I not done so were not to have been expected from it In truth had it been honestly possible to guide you whither I would bring you
adult	of the said year the doleful effects of the pestilence began to be horribly apparent by symptoms that shewed as if miraculous Not such were they as in the East where an issue of blood from the nose was a manifest sign of inevitable death; but in men and women alike it first betrayed itself by the emergence of certain tumours in the groin or the armpits some of which grew as large as a common apple others as an egg some more some less which the common folk called gavoccioli From the two said parts of the body this deadly gavocciolo soon began to propagate and spread itself in all directions indifferently; after which the form of the malady began to change black spots or livid making their appearance in many cases on the arm or the thigh or elsewhere now few and large now minute and numerous And as the gavocciolo had been and still was an infallible token of approaching death such also were these spots on whomsoever they shewed themselves Which maladies seemed to set entirely at naught both the art of the physician and the virtues of physic; indeed whether it was that the disorder was of a nature to defy such treatment or that the physicians were at fault--besides the qualified there was now a multitude both of men and of women who practised without having received the slightest tincture of medical science--and being in ignorance of its source failed to apply the proper remedies; in either case not merely were those that recovered few but almost all within three days from the appearance of the said symptoms sooner or later died and in most cases without any fever or other attendant malady Moreover the virulence of the pest was the greater by reason that intercourse was apt to convey it from the sick to the whole just as fire devours things dry or greasy when they are brought close to it Nay the evil went yet further for not merely by speech or association with the sick was the malady communicated to the healthy with consequent peril of common death; but any that touched the cloth of the sick or aught else that had been touched or used by them seemed thereby to contract the disease So marvellous sounds that which I have now to relate that had not many and I among them observed it with their own eyes I had hardly dared to credit it much less to set it down in writing though I had had it from the lips of a credible witness I say then that such was the energy of the contagion of the said pestilence that it was not merely propagated from man to man but what is much more startling it was frequently observed that things which had belonged to one sick or dead of the disease if touched by some other living creature not of the human species were the occasion not merely of sickening but of an almost instantaneous death Whereof my own eyes (as I said a little before) had cognisance one day among others by the following experience The rags of a poor man who had died of the disease being strewn about the open street two hogs came thither and after as is their wont no little trifling with their snouts took the rags between their teeth and tossed them to and fro about their chaps; whereupon almost immediately they gave a few turns and fell down dead as if by poison upon the rags which in an evil hour they had disturbed In which circumstances not to speak of many others of a similar or even graver complexion divers apprehensions and imaginations were engendered in the minds of such as were left alive inclining almost all of them to the same harsh resolution to wit to shun and abhor all contact with the sick and all that belonged to them thinking thereby to make each his own health secure Among whom there were those who thought that to live temperately and avoid all excess would count for much as a preservative against seizures of this kind Wherefore they banded together and dissociating themselves from all others formed communities in houses where there were no sick and lived a separate and secluded life which they regulated with the utmost care avoiding every kind of luxury but eating and drinking very moderately of the most delicate viands and the finest wines holding converse with none but one another lest tidings of sickness or death should reach them and diverting their minds with music and such other delights as they could devise Others the bias of whose minds was in the opposite direction maintained that to drink freely frequent places of public resort and take their pleasure with song and revel sparing to satisfy no appetite and to laugh and mock at no event was the sovereign remedy for so great an evil: and that which they affirmed they also put in practice so far as they were able resorting day and night now to this tavern now to that drinking with an entire disregard of rule or measure and by preference making the houses of others as it were their inns if they but saw in them aught that was particularly to their taste or liking; which they were readily able to do because the owners seeing death imminent had become as reckless of their property as of their lives; so that most of the houses were open to all comers and no distinction was observed between the stranger who presented himself and the rightful lord Thus adhering ever to their inhuman determination to shun the sick as far as possible they ordered their life In this extremity of our city's suffering and tribulation the venerable authority of laws human and divine was abased and all but totally dissolved for lack of those who should have administered and enforced them most of whom like the rest of the citizens were either dead or sick or so hard bested for servants that they were unable to execute any office; whereby every man was free to do what was right in his own eyes Not a few there were who belonged to neither of the two said parties but kept a middle course between them neither laying the same restraint upon their diet as the former nor allowing themselves the same license in drinking and other dissipations as the latter but living with a degree of freedom sufficient to satisfy their appetites and not as recluses They therefore walked abroad carrying in their hands flowers or fragrant herbs or divers sorts of spices which they frequently raised to their noses deeming it an excellent thing thus to comfort the brain with such perfumes because the air seemed to be everywhere laden and reeking with the stench emitted by the dead and the dying and the odours of drugs Some again the most sound perhaps in judgment as they we also the most harsh in temper of all affirmed that there was no medicine for the disease
adult	abandon their own children untended unvisited to their fate as if they had been strangers Wherefore the sick of both sexes whose number could not be estimated were left without resource but in the charity of friends (and few such there were) or the interest of servants who were hardly to be had at high rates and on unseemly terms and being moreover one and all men and women of gross understanding and for the most part unused to such offices concerned themselves no farther than to supply the immediate and expressed wants of the sick and to watch them die; in which service they themselves not seldom perished with their gains In consequence of which dearth of servants and dereliction of the sick by neighbours kinsfolk and friends it came to pass--a thing perhaps never before heard of that no woman however dainty fair or well-born she might be shrank when stricken with the disease from the ministrations of a man no matter whether he were young or no or scrupled to expose to him every part of her body with no more shame than if he had been a woman submitting of necessity to that which her malady required; wherefrom perchance there resulted in after time some loss of modesty in such as recovered Besides which many succumbed who with proper attendance would perhaps have escaped death; so that what with the virulence of the plague and the lack of due tendance of the sick the multitude of the deaths that daily and nightly took place in the city was such that those who heard the tale--not to say witnessed the fact--were struck dumb with amazement Whereby practices contrary to the former habits of the citizens could hardly fail to grow up among the survivors It had been as to-day it still is the custom for the women that were neighbours and of kin to the deceased to gather in his house with the women that were most closely connected with him to wail with them in common while on the other hand his male kinsfolk and neighbours with not a few of the other citizens and a due proportion of the clergy according to his quality assembled without in front of the house to receive the corpse; and so the dead man was borne on the shoulders of his peers with funeral pomp of taper and dirge to the church selected by him before his death Which rites as the pestilence waxed in fury were either in whole or in great part disused and gave way to others of a novel order For not only did no crowd of women surround the bed of the dying but many passed from this life unregarded and few indeed were they to whom were accorded the lamentations and bitter tears of sorrowing relations; nay for the most part their place was taken by the laugh the jest the festal gathering; observances which the women domestic piety in large measure set aside had adopted with very great advantage to their health Few also there were whose bodies were attended to the church by more than ten or twelve of their neighbours and those not the honourable and respected citizens; but a sort of corpse-carriers drawn from the baser ranks who called themselves becchini (1) and performed such offices for hire would shoulder the bier and with hurried steps carry it not to the church of the dead man's choice but to that which was nearest at hand with four or six priests in front and a candle or two or perhaps none; nor did the priests distress themselves with too long and solemn an office but with the aid of the becchini hastily consigned the corpse to the first tomb which they found untenanted The condition of lower and perhaps in great measure of the middle ranks of the people shewed even worse and more deplorable; for deluded by hope or constrained by poverty they stayed in their quarters in their houses where they sickened by thousands a day and being without service or help of any kind were so to speak irredeemably devoted to the death which overtook them Many died daily or nightly in the public streets; of many others who died at home the departure was hardly observed by their neighbours until the stench of their putrefying bodies carried the tidings; and what with their corpses and the corpses of others who died on every hand the whole place was a sepulchre It was the common practice of most of the neighbours moved no less by fear of contamination by the putrefying bodies than by charity towards the deceased to drag the corpses out of the houses with their own hands aided perhaps by a porter if a porter was to be had and to lay them in front of the doors where any one who made the round might have seen especially in the morning more of them than he could count; afterwards they would have biers brought up or in default planks whereon they laid them Nor was it once or twice only that one and the same bier carried two or three corpses at once; but quite a considerable number of such cases occurred one bier sufficing for husband and wife two or three brothers father and son and so forth And times without number it happened that as two priests bearing the cross were on their way to perform the last office for some one three or four biers were brought up by the porters in rear of them so that whereas the priests supposed that they had but one corpse to bury they discovered that there were six or eight or sometimes more Nor for all their number were their obsequies honoured by either tears or lights or crowds of mourners; rather it was come to this that a dead man was then of no more account than a dead goat would be to-day From all which it is abundantly manifest that that lesson of patient resignation which the sages were never able to learn from the slight and infrequent mishaps which occur in the natural course of events was now brought home even to the minds of the simple by the magnitude of their disasters so that they became indifferent to them As consecrated ground there was not in extent sufficient to provide tombs for the vast multitude of corpses which day and night and almost every hour were brought in eager haste to the churches for interment least of all if ancient custom were to be observed and a separate resting-place assigned to each they dug for each graveyard as soon as it was full a huge trench in which they laid the corpses as they arrived by hundreds at a time piling them up as merchandise is stowed in the hold of a ship tier upon tier each covered with a little earth until the trench would hold no more But I spare to rehearse with minute particularity each of the woes that came upon our city and say in brief that harsh as was the tenor of her fortunes the surrounding country knew no mitigation for there--not to speak of the castles each as it were a little city in itself--in sequestered village or on the open champaign by the wayside on the farm in the homestead the poor hapless husbandmen and their families forlorn of physicians' care or servants' tendance perished day and night alike not as
adult	families of historic fame of vast ancestral domains and wealth proverbial found now no scion to continue the succession! How many brave men how many fair ladies how many gallant youths whom any physician were he Galen Hippocrates or Aesculapius himself would have pronounced in the soundest of health broke fast with their kinsfolk comrades and friends in the morning and when evening came supped with their forefathers in the other world Irksome it is to myself to rehearse in detail so sorrowful a history Wherefore being minded to pass over so much thereof as I fairly can I say that our city being thus well-nigh depopulated it so happened as I afterwards learned from one worthy of credit that on a Tuesday morning after Divine Service the venerable church of Santa Maria Novella was almost deserted save for the presence of seven young ladies habited sadly in keeping with the season All were connected either by blood or at least as friends or neighbours and fair and of good understanding were they all as also of noble birth gentle manners and a modest sprightliness In age none exceeded twenty-eight or fell short of eighteen years Their names I would set down in due form had I not good reason to with hold them being solicitous lest the matters which here ensue as told and heard by them should in after time be occasion of reproach to any of them in view of the ample indulgence which was then for the reasons heretofore set forth accorded to the lighter hours of persons of much riper years than they but which the manners of to-day have somewhat restricted; nor would I furnish material to detractors ever ready to bestow their bite where praise is due to cast by invidious speech the least slur upon the honour of these noble ladies Wherefore that what each says may be apprehended without confusion I intend to give them names more or less appropriate to the character of each The first then being the eldest of the seven we will call Pampinea the second Fiammetta the third Filomena the fourth Emilia the fifth we will distinguish as Lauretta the sixth as Neifile and the last not without reason shall be named Elisa 'Twas not of set purpose but by mere chance that these ladies met in the same part of the church; but at length grouping themselves into a sort of circle after heaving a few sighs they gave up saying paternosters and began to converse (among other topics) on the times So they continued for awhile and then Pampinea the rest listening in silent attention thus began:-- Dear ladies mine often have I heard it said and you doubtless as well as I that wrong is done to none by whoso but honestly uses his reason And to fortify preserve and defend his life to the utmost of his power is the dictate of natural reason in everyone that is born Which right is accorded in such measure that in defence thereof men have been held blameless in taking life And if this be allowed by the laws albeit on their stringency depends the well-being of every mortal how much more exempt from censure should we and all other honest folk be in taking such means as we may for the preservation of our life? As often as I bethink me how we have been occupied this morning and not this morning only and what has been the tenor of our conversation I perceive--and you will readily do the like--that each of us is apprehensive on her own account; nor thereat do I marvel but at this I do marvel greatly that though none of us lacks a woman's wit yet none of us has recourse to any means to avert that which we all justly fear Here we tarry as if methinks for no other purpose than to bear witness to the number of the corpses that are brought hither for interment or to hearken if the brothers there within whose number is now almost reduced to nought chant their offices at the canonical hours or by our weeds of woe to obtrude on the attention of every one that enters the nature and degree of our sufferings And if we quit the church we see dead or sick folk carried about or we see those who for their crimes were of late condemned to exile by the outraged majesty of the public laws but who now in contempt of those laws well knowing that their ministers are a prey to death or disease have returned and traverse the city in packs making it hideous with their riotous antics; or else we see the refuse of the people fostered on our blood becchini as they call themselves who for our torment go prancing about here and there and everywhere making mock of our miseries in scurrilous songs Nor hear we aught but:--Such and such are dead; or Such and such art dying; and should hear dolorous wailing on every hand were there but any to wail Or go we home what see we there? I know not if you are in like case with me; but there where once were servants in plenty I find none left but my maid and shudder with terror and feel the very hairs of my head to stand on end; and turn or tarry where I may I encounter the ghosts of the departed not with their wonted mien but with something horrible in their aspect that appals me For which reasons church and street and home are alike distressful to me and the more so that none methinks having means and place of retirement as we have abides here save only we; or if any such there be they are of those as my senses too often have borne witness who make no distinction between things honourable and their opposites so they but answer the cravings of appetite and alone or in company do daily and nightly what things soever give promise of most gratification Nor are these secular persons alone; but such as live recluse in monasteries break their rule and give themselves up to carnal pleasures persuading themselves that they are permissible to them and only forbidden to others and thereby thinking to escape are become unchaste and dissolute If such be our circumstances--and such most manifestly they are--what do we here? what wait we for? what dream we of? why are we less prompt to provide for our own safety than the rest of the citizens? Is life less dear to us than to all other women? or think we that the bond which unites soul and body is stronger in us than in others so that there is no blow that may light upon it of which we need be apprehensive? If so we err we are deceived What insensate folly were it in us so to believe! We have but to call to mind the number and condition of those young as we and of both sexes who have succumbed to this cruel pestilence to find therein conclusive evidence to the contrary And lest from lethargy or indolence we fall into the vain imagination that by some lucky accident we may in some way or another when we would escape--I know not if your opinion accord with mine--I should deem it most wise in us our case being what it is if as many others have done before us and are still doing we were to quit
adult	overtake us--the end which Heaven reserves for these events And I remind you that it will be at least as seemly in us to leave with honour as in others of whom there are not a few to stay with dishonour The other ladies praised Pampinea's plan and indeed were so prompt to follow it that they had already begun to discuss the manner in some detail as if they were forthwith to rise from their seats and take the road when Filomena whose judgment was excellent interposed saying:-- Ladies though Pampinea has spoken to most excellent effect yet it were not well to be so precipitate as you seem disposed to be Bethink you that we are all women; nor is there any here so young but she is of years to understand how women are minded towards one another when they are alone together and how ill they are able to rule themselves without the guidance of some man We are sensitive perverse suspicious pusillanimous and timid; wherefore I much misdoubt that if we find no other guidance than our own this company is like to break up sooner and with less credit to us than it should Against which it were well to provide at the outset Said then Elisa:-- Without doubt man is woman's head and without man's governance it is seldom that aught that we do is brought to a commendable conclusion But how are we to come by the men? Every one of us here knows that her kinsmen are for the most part dead and that the survivors are dispersed one here one there we know not where bent each on escaping the same fate as ourselves; nor were it seemly to seek the aid of strangers; for as we are in quest of health we must find some means so to order matters that wherever we seek diversion or repose trouble and scandal do not follow us While the ladies were thus conversing there came into the church three young men young I say but not so young that the age of the youngest was less than twenty-five years; in whom neither the sinister course of events nor the loss of friends or kinsfolk nor fear for their own safety had availed to quench or even temper the ardour of their love The first was called Pamfilo the second Filostrato and the third Dioneo Very debonair and chivalrous were they all; and in this troublous time they were seeking if haply to their exceeding great solace they might have sight of their fair friends all three of whom chanced to be among the said seven ladies besides some that were of kin to the young men At one and the same moment they recognised the ladies and were recognised by them: wherefore with a gracious smile Pampinea thus began:-- Lo fortune is propitious to our enterprise having vouchsafed us the good offices of these young men who are as gallant as they are discreet and will gladly give us their guidance and escort so we but take them into our service Whereupon Neifile crimson from brow to neck with the blush of modesty being one of those that had a lover among the young men said:-- For God's sake Pampinea have a care what you say Well assured am I that nought but good can be said of any of them and I deem them fit for office far more onerous than this which you propose for them and their good and honourable company worthy of ladies fairer by far and more tenderly to be cherished than such as we But 'tis no secret that they love some of us here; wherefore I misdoubt that if we take them with us we may thereby give occasion for scandal and censure merited neither by us nor by them That said Filomena is of no consequence; so I but live honestly my conscience gives me no disquietude; if others asperse me God and the truth will take arms in my defence Now should they be disposed to attend us of a truth we might say with Pampinea that fortune favours our enterprise The silence which followed betokened consent on the part of the other ladies who then with one accord resolved to call the young men and acquaint them with their purpose and pray them to be of their company So without further parley Pampinea who had a kinsman among the young men rose and approached them where they stood intently regarding them; and greeting them gaily she opened to them their plan and besought them on the part of herself and her friends to join their company on terms of honourable and fraternal comradeship At first the young men thought she did but trifle with them; but when they saw that she was in earnest they answered with alacrity that they were ready and promptly even before they left the church set matters in train for their departure So all things meet being first sent forward in due order to their intended place of sojourn the ladies with some of their maids and the three young men each attended by a man-servant sallied forth of the city on the morrow being Wednesday about daybreak and took the road; nor had they journeyed more than two short miles when they arrived at their destination The estate (2) lay upon a little hill some distance from the nearest highway and embowered in shrubberies of divers hues and other greenery afforded the eye a pleasant prospect On the summit of the hill was a palace with galleries halls and chambers disposed around a fair and spacious court each very fair in itself and the goodlier to see for the gladsome pictures with which it was adorned; the whole set amidst meads and gardens laid out with marvellous art wells of the coolest water and vaults of the finest wines things more suited to dainty drinkers than to sober and honourable women On their arrival the company to their no small delight found their beds already made the rooms well swept and garnished with flowers of every sort that the season could afford and the floors carpeted with rushes When they were seated Dioneo a gallant who had not his match for courtesy and wit spoke thus:-- My ladies 'tis not our forethought so much as your own mother-wit that has guided us hither How you mean to dispose of your cares I know not; mine I left behind me within the city-gate when I issued thence with you a brief while ago Wherefore I pray you either address yourselves to make merry to laugh and sing with me (so far I mean as may consist with your dignity) or give me leave to hie me back to the stricken city there to abide with my cares To whom blithely Pampinea replied as if she too had cast off all her cares:-- Well sayest thou Dioneo excellent well; gaily we mean to live; 'twas a refuge from sorrow that here we sought nor had we other cause to come hither But as no anarchy can long endure I who initiated the deliberations of which this fair company is the fruit do now to the end that our joy may be lasting deem it expedient that there be one among us in chief authority honoured and obeyed by us as our superior whose exclusive care it shall be to devise how we may pass our time blithely And that each in turn may prove the weight of the care as well as enjoy the pleasure of sovereignty and no distinction being made of sex envy be felt by none by reason of exclusion from the office; I propose that the weight and honour be borne by each one for a day; and let the first to bear sway be chosen by us all those that
adult	man Sirisco I appoint treasurer and chancellor of our exchequer; and be he ever answerable to Parmeno While Parmeno and Sirisco are too busy about their duties to serve their masters let Filostrato's man Tindaro have charge of the chambers of all three My maid Misia and Filomena's maid Licisca will keep in the kitchen and with all due diligence prepare such dishes as Parmeno shall bid them Lauretta's maid Chimera and Fiammetta's maid Stratilia we make answerable for the ladies' chambers and wherever we may take up our quarters let them see that all is spotless And now we enjoin you one and all alike as you value our favour that none of you go where you may return whence you may hear or see what you may bring us any tidings but such as be cheerful These orders thus succinctly given were received with universal approval Whereupon Pampinea rose and said gaily:-- Here are gardens meads and other places delightsome enough where you may wander at will and take your pleasure; but on the stroke of tierce (3) let all be here to breakfast in the shade Thus dismissed by their new queen the gay company sauntered gently through a garden the young men saying sweet things to the fair ladies who wove fair garlands of divers sorts of leaves and sang love-songs Having thus spent the time allowed them by the queen they returned to the house where they found that Parmeno had entered on his office with zeal; for in a hall on the ground-floor they saw tables covered with the whitest of cloths and beakers that shone like silver and sprays of broom scattered everywhere So at the bidding of the queen they washed their hands and all took their places as marshalled by Parmeno Dishes daintily prepared were served and the finest wines were at hand; the three serving-men did their office noiselessly; in a word all was fair and ordered in a seemly manner; whereby the spirits of the company rose and they seasoned their viands with pleasant jests and sprightly sallies Breakfast done the tables were removed and the queen bade fetch instruments of music; for all ladies and young men alike knew how to tread a measure and some of them played and sang with great skill: so at her command Dioneo having taken a lute and Fiammetta a viol they struck up a dance in sweet concert; and the servants being dismissed to their repast the queen attended by the other ladies and the two young men led off a stately carol; which ended they fell to singing ditties dainty and gay Thus they diverted themselves until the queen deeming it time to retire to rest dismissed them all for the night So the three young men and the ladies withdrew to their several quarters which were in different parts of the palace There they found the beds well made and abundance of flowers as in the hall; and so they undressed and went to bed Shortly after none (4) the queen rose and roused the rest of the ladies as also the young men averring that it was injurious to health to sleep long in the daytime They therefore hied them to a meadow where the grass grew green and luxuriant being nowhere scorched by the sun and a light breeze gently fanned them So at the queen's command they all ranged themselves in a circle on the grass and hearkened while she thus spoke:-- You mark that the sun is high the heat intense and the silence unbroken save by the cicalas among the olive-trees It were therefore the height of folly to quit this spot at present Here the air is cool and the prospect fair and here observe are dice and chess Take then your pleasure as you may be severally minded; but if you take my advice you will find pastime for the hot hours before us not in play in which the loser must needs be vexed and neither the winner nor the onlooker much the better pleased but in telling of stories in which the invention of one may afford solace to all the company of his hearers You will not each have told a story before the sun will be low and the heat abated so that we shall be able to go and severally take our pleasure where it may seem best to each Wherefore if my proposal meet with your approval--for in this I am disposed to consult your pleasure--let us adopt it; if not divert yourselves as best you may until the vesper hour The queen's proposal being approved by all ladies and men alike she added:-- So please you then I ordain that for this first day we be free to discourse of such matters as most commend themselves to each in turn She then addressed Pamfilo who sat on her right hand bidding him with a gracious air to lead off with one of his stories And prompt at the word of command Pamfilo while all listened intently thus began:-- (1) Probably from the name of the pronged or hooked implement with which they dragged the corpses out of the houses (2) Identified by tradition with the Villa Palmieri (now Crawford) on the slope of Fiesole (3) The canonical hour following prime roughly speaking about 9 a m (4) The canonical hour following sext i e 3 p m NOVEL I -- Ser Ciappelletto cheats a holy friar by a false confession and dies; and having lived as a very bad man is on his death reputed a saint and called San Ciappelletto -- A seemly thing it is dearest ladies that whatever we do it be begun in the holy and awful name of Him who was the maker of all Wherefore as it falls to me to lead the way in this your enterprise of story telling I intend to begin with one of His wondrous works that by hearing thereof our hopes in Him in whom is no change may be established and His name be by us forever lauded 'Tis manifest that as things temporal are all doomed to pass and perish so within and without they abound with trouble and anguish and travail and are subject to infinite perils; nor save for the especial grace of God should we whose being is bound up with and forms
adult	The story goes then that Musciatto Franzesi a great and wealthy merchant being made a knight in France and being to attend Charles Sansterre brother of the King of France when he came into Tuscany at the instance and with the support of Pope Boniface found his affairs as often happens to merchants to be much involved in divers quarters and neither easily nor suddenly to be adjusted; wherefore he determined to place them in the hands of commissioners and found no difficulty except as to certain credits given to some Burgundians for the recovery of which he doubted whether he could come by a competent agent; for well he knew that the Burgundians were violent men and ill-conditioned and faithless; nor could he call to mind any man so bad that he could with confidence oppose his guile to theirs After long pondering the matter he recollected one Ser Ciapperello da Prato who much frequented his house in Paris Who being short of stature and very affected the French who knew not the meaning of Cepparello (1) but supposed that it meant the same as Cappello i e garland in their vernacular called him not Cappello but Ciappelletto by reason of his diminutive size; and as Ciappelletto he was known everywhere whereas few people knew him as Ciapperello Now Ciappelletto's manner of life was thus He was by profession a notary and his pride was to make false documents; he would have made them as often as he was asked and more readily without fee than another at a great price; few indeed he made that were not false and great was his shame when they were discovered False witness he bore solicited or unsolicited with boundless delight; and as oaths were in those days had in very great respect in France he scrupling not to forswear himself corruptly carried the day in every case in which he was summoned faithfully to attest the truth He took inordinate delight and bestirred himself with great zeal in fomenting ill-feeling enmities dissensions between friends kinsfolk and all other folk; and the more calamitous were the consequences the better he was pleased Set him on murder or any other foul crime and he never hesitated but went about it with alacrity; he had been known on more than one occasion to inflict wounds or death by preference with his own hands He was a profuse blasphemer of God and His saints and that on the most trifling occasions being of all men the most irascible He was never seen at Church held all the sacraments vile things and derided them in language of horrible ribaldry On the other hand he resorted readily to the tavern and other places of evil repute and frequented them He was as fond of women as a dog is of the stick: in the use against nature he had not his match among the most abandoned He would have pilfered and stolen as a matter of conscience as a holy man would make an oblation Most gluttonous he was and inordinately fond of his cups whereby he sometimes brought upon himself both shame and suffering He was also a practised gamester and thrower of false dice But why enlarge so much upon him? Enough that he was perhaps the worst man that ever was born The rank and power of Musciatto Franzesi had long been this reprobate's mainstay serving in many instances to secure him considerate treatment on the part of the private persons whom he frequently and the court which he unremittingly outraged So Musciatto having bethought him of this Ser Cepparello with whose way of life he was very well acquainted judged him to be the very sort of person to cope with the guile of the Burgundians He therefore sent for him and thus addressed him:-- Ser Ciappelletto I am as thou knowest about to leave this place for good; and among those with whom I have to settle accounts are certain Burgundians very wily knaves; nor know I the man whom I could more fitly entrust with the recovery of my money than thyself Wherefore as thou hast nothing to do at present if thou wilt undertake this business I will procure thee the favour of the court and give thee a reasonable part of what thou shalt recover Ser Ciappelletto being out of employment and by no means in easy circumstances and about to lose Musciatto so long his mainstay and support without the least demur for in truth he had hardly any choice made his mind up and answered that he was ready to go So the bargain was struck Armed with the power of attorney and the royal letters commendatory Ser Ciappelletto took leave of Messer Musciatto and hied him to Burgundy where he was hardly known to a soul He set about the business which had brought him thither the recovery of the money in a manner amicable and considerate foreign to his nature as if he were minded to reserve his severity to the last While thus occupied he was frequently at the house of two Florentine usurers who treated him with great distinction out of regard for Messer Musciatto; and there it so happened that he fell sick The two brothers forthwith placed physicians and servants in attendance upon him and omitted no means meet and apt for the restoration of his health But all remedies proved unavailing; for being now old and having led as the physicians reported a disorderly life he went daily from bad to worse like one stricken with a mortal disease This greatly disconcerted the two brothers; and one day hard by the room in which Ser Ciappelletto lay sick they began to talk about him; saying one to the other:-- What shall we do with this man? We are hard bested indeed on his account If we turn him out of the house sick as he is we shall not only incur grave censure but shall evince a signal want of sense; for folk must know the welcome we gave him in the first instance the solicitude with which we have had him treated and tended since his illness during which time he could not possibly do aught to displease us and yet they would see him suddenly turned out of our house sick unto death On the other hand he has been so bad a man that he is sure not to confess or receive any of the Church's sacraments; and dying thus unconfessed he will be denied burial in church but will be cast out into some ditch like a dog; nay 'twill be all one if he do confess for such and so horrible have been his crimes that no friar or priest either will or can absolve him; and so dying without absolution he will still be cast out into the ditch In which case the folk of these parts who reprobate our trade as iniquitous and revile it all day long and would fain rob us will seize their opportunity and raise a tumult and make a raid upon our houses crying:--'Away with these Lombard whom the Church excludes from her pale;' and will certainly strip us of our goods and perhaps take our lives also; so that in any case we stand to lose if this man die Ser Ciappelletto who as we said lay close at hand while they thus spoke and whose hearing was sharpened as is often the case by his malady overheard all that they said about him So he called them to him and said to them:-- I would not have you disquiet yourselves in regard of me or apprehend loss to befall you by my death I have heard what you have said of
children	of fun and he never tired of hearing Sara's queer speeches Oh little Sara he said What shall I do when I have no one to say solemn things to me? No one else is as solemn as you are But why do solemn things make you laugh so? inquired Sara Because you are such fun when you say them he answered laughing still more And then suddenly he swept her into his arms and kissed her very hard stopping laughing all at once and looking almost as if tears had come into his eyes It was just then that Miss Minchin entered the room She was very like her house Sara felt: tall and dull and respectable and ugly She had large cold fishy eyes and a large cold fishy smile It spread itself into a very large smile when she saw Sara and Captain Crewe She had heard a great many desirable things of the young soldier from the lady who had recommended her school to him Among other things she had heard that he was a rich father who was willing to spend a great deal of money on his little daughter It will be a great privilege to have charge of such a beautiful and promising child Captain Crewe she said taking Sara's hand and stroking it Lady Meredith has told me of her unusual cleverness A clever child is a great treasure in an establishment like mine Sara stood quietly with her eyes fixed upon Miss Minchin's face She was thinking something odd as usual Why does she say I am a beautiful child? she was thinking I am not beautiful at all Colonel Grange's little girl Isobel is beautiful She has dimples and rose-colored cheeks and long hair the color of gold I have short black hair and green eyes; besides which I am a thin child and not fair in the least I am one of the ugliest children I ever saw She is beginning by telling a story She was mistaken however in thinking she was an ugly child She was not in the least like Isobel Grange who had been the beauty of the regiment but she had an odd charm of her own She was a slim supple creature rather tall for her age and had an intense attractive little face Her hair was heavy and quite black and only curled at the tips; her eyes were greenish gray it is true but they were big wonderful eyes with long black lashes and though she herself did not like the color of them many other people did Still she was very firm in her belief that she was an ugly little girl and she was not at all elated by Miss Minchin's flattery I should be telling a story if I said she was beautiful she thought; and I should know I was telling a story I believe I am as ugly as she is--in my way What did she say that for? After she had known Miss Minchin longer she learned why she had said it She discovered that she said the same thing to each papa and mamma who brought a child to her school Sara stood near her father and listened while he and Miss Minchin talked She had been brought to the seminary because Lady Meredith's two little girls had been educated there and Captain Crewe had a great respect for Lady Meredith's experience Sara was to be what was known as a parlor boarder and she was to enjoy even greater privileges than parlor boarders usually did She was to have a pretty bedroom and sitting room of her own; she was to have a pony and a carriage and a maid to take the place of the ayah who had been her nurse in India I am not in the least anxious about her education Captain Crewe said with his gay laugh as he held Sara's hand and patted it The difficulty will be to keep her from learning too fast and too much She is always sitting with her little nose burrowing into books She doesn't read them Miss Minchin; she gobbles them up as if she were a little wolf instead of a little girl She is always starving for new books to gobble and she wants grown-up books--great big fat ones--French and German as well as English--history and biography and poets and all sorts of things Drag her away from her books when she reads too much Make her ride her pony in the Row or go out and buy a new doll She ought to play more with dolls Papa said Sara you see if I went out and bought a new doll every few days I should have more than I could be fond of Dolls ought to be intimate friends Emily is going to be my intimate friend Captain Crewe looked at Miss Minchin and Miss Minchin looked at Captain Crewe Who is Emily? she inquired Tell her Sara Captain Crewe said smiling Sara's green-gray eyes looked very solemn and quite soft as she answered She is a doll I haven't got yet she said She is a doll papa is going to buy for me We are going out together to find
children	embroidered ones and hats with great soft ostrich feathers and ermine coats and muffs and boxes of tiny gloves and handkerchiefs and silk stockings in such abundant supplies that the polite young women behind the counters whispered to each other that the odd little girl with the big solemn eyes must be at least some foreign princess--perhaps the little daughter of an Indian rajah And at last they found Emily but they went to a number of toy shops and looked at a great many dolls before they discovered her I want her to look as if she wasn't a doll really Sara said I want her to look as if she LISTENS when I talk to her The trouble with dolls papa --and she put her head on one side and reflected as she said it-- the trouble with dolls is that they never seem to HEAR So they looked at big ones and little ones-- at dolls with black eyes and dolls with blue--at dolls with brown curls and dolls with golden braids dolls dressed and dolls undressed You see Sara said when they were examining one who had no clothes If when I find her she has no frocks we can take her to a dressmaker and have her things made to fit They will fit better if they are tried on After a number of disappointments they decided to walk and look in at the shop windows and let the cab follow them They had passed two or three places without even going in when as they were approaching a shop which was really not a very large one Sara suddenly started and clutched her father's arm Oh papa! she cried There is Emily! A flush had risen to her face and there was an expression in her green-gray eyes as if she had just recognized someone she was intimate with and fond of She is actually waiting there for us! she said Let us go in to her Dear me said Captain Crewe I feel as if we ought to have someone to introduce us You must introduce me and I will introduce you said Sara But I knew her the minute I saw her--so perhaps she knew me too Perhaps she had known her She had certainly a very intelligent expression in her eyes when Sara took her in her arms She was a large doll but not too large to carry about easily; she had naturally curling golden-brown hair which hung like a mantle about her and her eyes were a deep clear gray-blue with soft thick eyelashes which were real eyelashes and not mere painted lines Of course said Sara looking into her face as she held her on her knee of course papa this is Emily So Emily was bought and actually taken to a children's outfitter's shop and measured for a wardrobe as grand as Sara's own She had lace frocks too and velvet and muslin ones and hats and coats and beautiful lace-trimmed underclothes and gloves and handkerchiefs and furs I should like her always to look as if she was a child with a good mother said Sara I'm her mother though I am going to make a companion of her Captain Crewe would really have enjoyed the shopping tremendously but that a sad thought kept tugging at his heart This all meant that he was going to be separated from his beloved quaint little comrade He got out of his bed in the middle of that night and went and stood looking down at Sara who lay asleep with Emily in her arms Her black hair was spread out on the pillow and Emily's golden-brown hair mingled with it both of them had lace-ruffled nightgowns and both had long eyelashes which lay and curled up on their cheeks Emily looked so like a real child that Captain Crewe felt glad she was there He drew a big sigh and pulled his mustache with a boyish expression Heigh-ho little Sara! he said to himself I don't believe you know how much your daddy will miss you The next day he took her to Miss Minchin's and left her there He was to sail away the next morning He explained to Miss Minchin that his solicitors Messrs Barrow & Skipworth had charge of his affairs in England and would give her any advice she wanted and that they would pay the bills she sent in for Sara's expenses He would write to Sara twice a week and she was to be given every pleasure she asked for She is a sensible little thing and she never wants anything it isn't safe to give her he said Then he went with Sara into her little sitting room and they bade each other good-by Sara sat on his knee and held the lapels of his coat in her small hands and looked long and hard at his
children	she never disobeyed Miss Minchin She went downstairs again looking almost alarmed I never saw such a funny old-fashioned child sister she said She has locked herself in and she is not making the least particle of noise It is much better than if she kicked and screamed as some of them do Miss Minchin answered I expected that a child as much spoiled as she is would set the whole house in an uproar If ever a child was given her own way in everything she is I've been opening her trunks and putting her things away said Miss Amelia I never saw anything like them--sable and ermine on her coats and real Valenciennes lace on her underclothing You have seen some of her clothes What DO you think of them? I think they are perfectly ridiculous replied Miss Minchin sharply; but they will look very well at the head of the line when we take the schoolchildren to church on Sunday She has been provided for as if she were a little princess And upstairs in the locked room Sara and Emily sat on the floor and stared at the corner round which the cab had disappeared while Captain Crewe looked backward waving and kissing his hand as if he could not bear to stop 2 A French Lesson When Sara entered the schoolroom the next morning everybody looked at her with wide interested eyes By that time every pupil-- from Lavinia Herbert who was nearly thirteen and felt quite grown up to Lottie Legh who was only just four and the baby of the school-- had heard a great deal about her They knew very certainly that she was Miss Minchin's show pupil and was considered a credit to the establishment One or two of them had even caught a glimpse of her French maid Mariette who had arrived the evening before Lavinia had managed to pass Sara's room when the door was open and had seen Mariette opening a box which had arrived late from some shop It was full of petticoats with lace frills on them--frills and frills she whispered to her friend Jessie as she bent over her geography I saw her shaking them out I heard Miss Minchin say to Miss Amelia that her clothes were so grand that they were ridiculous for a child My mamma says that children should be dressed simply She has got one of those petticoats on now I saw it when she sat down She has silk stockings on! whispered Jessie bending over her geography also And what little feet! I never saw such little feet Oh sniffed Lavinia spitefully that is the way her slippers are made My mamma says that even big feet can be made to look small if you have a clever shoemaker I don't think she is pretty at all Her eyes are such a queer color She isn't pretty as other pretty people are said Jessie stealing a glance across the room; but she makes you want to look at her again She has tremendously long eyelashes but her eyes are almost green Sara was sitting quietly in her seat waiting to be told what to do She had been placed near Miss Minchin's desk She was not abashed at all by the many pairs of eyes watching her She was interested and looked back quietly at the children who looked at her She wondered what they were thinking of and if they liked Miss Minchin and if they cared for their lessons and if any of them had a papa at all like her own She had had a long talk with Emily about her papa that morning He is on the sea now Emily she had said We must be very great friends to each other and tell each other things Emily look at me You have the nicest eyes I ever saw--but I wish you could speak She was a child full of imaginings and whimsical thoughts and one of her fancies was that there would be a great deal of comfort in even pretending that Emily was alive and really heard and understood After Mariette had dressed her in her dark-blue schoolroom frock and tied her hair with a dark-blue ribbon she went to Emily who sat in a chair of her own and gave her a book You can read that while I am downstairs she said; and seeing Mariette looking at her curiously she spoke to her with a serious little face What I believe about dolls she said is that they can do things they will not let us know about Perhaps really Emily can read and talk and walk but she will only do it when people are out of the room That is her secret You see if people knew that dolls could do things they would make them work So perhaps they have promised each other to keep it a secret If
children	minutes being looked at by the pupils Miss Minchin rapped in a dignified manner upon her desk Young ladies she said I wish to introduce you to your new companion All the little girls rose in their places and Sara rose also I shall expect you all to be very agreeable to Miss Crewe; she has just come to us from a great distance--in fact from India As soon as lessons are over you must make each other's acquaintance The pupils bowed ceremoniously and Sara made a little curtsy and then they sat down and looked at each other again Sara said Miss Minchin in her schoolroom manner come here to me She had taken a book from the desk and was turning over its leaves Sara went to her politely As your papa has engaged a French maid for you she began I conclude that he wishes you to make a special study of the French language Sara felt a little awkward I think he engaged her she said because he--he thought I would like her Miss Minchin I am afraid said Miss Minchin with a slightly sour smile that you have been a very spoiled little girl and always imagine that things are done because you like them My impression is that your papa wished you to learn French If Sara had been older or less punctilious about being quite polite to people she could have explained herself in a very few words But as it was she felt a flush rising on her cheeks Miss Minchin was a very severe and imposing person and she seemed so absolutely sure that Sara knew nothing whatever of French that she felt as if it would be almost rude to correct her The truth was that Sara could not remember the time when she had not seemed to know French Her father had often spoken it to her when she had been a baby Her mother had been a French woman and Captain Crewe had loved her language so it happened that Sara had always heard and been familiar with it I--I have never really learned French but--but-- she began trying shyly to make herself clear One of Miss Minchin's chief secret annoyances was that she did not speak French herself and was desirous of concealing the irritating fact She therefore had no intention of discussing the matter and laying herself open to innocent questioning by a new little pupil That is enough she said with polite tartness If you have not learned you must begin at once The French master Monsieur Dufarge will be here in a few minutes Take this book and look at it until he arrives Sara's cheeks felt warm She went back to her seat and opened the book She looked at the first page with a grave face She knew it would be rude to smile and she was very determined not to be rude But it was very odd to find herself expected to study a page which told her that le pere meant the father and la mere meant the mother Miss Minchin glanced toward her scrutinizingly You look rather cross Sara she said I am sorry you do not like the idea of learning French I am very fond of it answered Sara thinking she would try again; but-- You must not say `but' when you are told to do things said Miss Minchin Look at your book again And Sara did so and did not smile even when she found that le fils meant the son and le frere meant the brother When Monsieur Dufarge comes she thought I can make him understand Monsieur Dufarge arrived very shortly afterward He was a very nice intelligent middle-aged Frenchman and he looked interested when his eyes fell upon Sara trying politely to seem absorbed in her little book of phrases Is this a new pupil for me madame? he said to Miss Minchin I hope that is my good fortune Her papa--Captain Crewe--is very anxious that she should begin the language But I am afraid she has a childish prejudice against it She does not seem to wish to learn said Miss Minchin I am sorry of that mademoiselle he said kindly to Sara Perhaps when we begin to study together I may show you that it is a charming tongue
children	days in London sometimes seemed worlds away When she had finished he took the phrase book from her with a look almost affectionate But he spoke to Miss Minchin Ah madame he said there is not much I can teach her She has not LEARNED French; she is French Her accent is exquisite You ought to have told me exclaimed Miss Minchin much mortified turning to Sara I--I tried said Sara I--I suppose I did not begin right Miss Minchin knew she had tried and that it had not been her fault that she was not allowed to explain And when she saw that the pupils had been listening and that Lavinia and Jessie were giggling behind their French grammars she felt infuriated Silence young ladies! she said severely rapping upon the desk Silence at once! And she began from that minute to feel rather a grudge against her show pupil 3 Ermengarde On that first morning when Sara sat at Miss Minchin's side aware that the whole schoolroom was devoting itself to observing her she had noticed very soon one little girl about her own age who looked at her very hard with a pair of light rather dull blue eyes She was a fat child who did not look as if she were in the least clever but she had a good-naturedly pouting mouth Her flaxen hair was braided in a tight pigtail tied with a ribbon and she had pulled this pigtail around her neck and was biting the end of the ribbon resting her elbows on the desk as she stared wonderingly at the new pupil When Monsieur Dufarge began to speak to Sara she looked a little frightened; and when Sara stepped forward and looking at him with the innocent appealing eyes answered him without any warning in French the fat little girl gave a startled jump and grew quite red in her awed amazement Having wept hopeless tears for weeks in her efforts to remember that la mere meant the mother and le pere the father -- when one spoke sensible English--it was almost too much for her suddenly to find herself listening to a child her own age who seemed not only quite familiar with these words but apparently knew any number of others and could mix them up with verbs as if they were mere trifles She stared so hard and bit the ribbon on her pigtail so fast that she attracted the attention of Miss Minchin who feeling extremely cross at the moment immediately pounced upon her Miss St John! she exclaimed severely What do you mean by such conduct? Remove your elbows! Take your ribbon out of your mouth! Sit up at once! Upon which Miss St John gave another jump and when Lavinia and Jessie tittered she became redder than ever--so red indeed that she almost looked as if tears were coming into her poor dull childish eyes; and Sara saw her and was so sorry for her that she began rather to like her and want to be her friend It was a way of hers always to want to spring into any fray in which someone was made uncomfortable or unhappy If Sara had been a boy and lived a few centuries ago her father used to say she would have gone about the country with her sword drawn rescuing and defending everyone in distress She always wants to fight when she sees people in trouble So she took rather a fancy to fat slow little Miss St John and kept glancing toward her through the morning She saw that lessons were no easy matter to her and that there was no danger of her ever being spoiled by being treated as a show pupil Her French lesson was a pathetic thing Her pronunciation made even Monsieur Dufarge smile in spite of himself and Lavinia and Jessie and the more fortunate girls either giggled or looked at her in wondering disdain But Sara did not laugh She tried to look as if she did not hear when Miss St John called le bon pain lee bong pang She had a fine hot little temper of her own and it made her feel rather savage when she heard the titters and saw the poor stupid distressed child's face It isn't funny really she said between her teeth as she bent over her book They ought not to laugh When lessons were over and the pupils gathered together in groups to talk Sara looked for Miss St John and finding her bundled rather disconsolately in a window-seat she walked over to her and spoke She only said the kind of thing little girls always say to each other by way of beginning an acquaintance but there was something friendly about Sara and people always felt it What is your name? she said To explain Miss St John's amazement one must recall that a new
children	few incidents of history and to write a French exercise Ermengarde was a severe trial to Mr St John He could not understand how a child of his could be a notably and unmistakably dull creature who never shone in anything Good heavens! he had said more than once as he stared at her there are times when I think she is as stupid as her Aunt Eliza! If her Aunt Eliza had been slow to learn and quick to forget a thing entirely when she had learned it Ermengarde was strikingly like her She was the monumental dunce of the school and it could not be denied She must be MADE to learn her father said to Miss Minchin Consequently Ermengarde spent the greater part of her life in disgrace or in tears She learned things and forgot them; or if she remembered them she did not understand them So it was natural that having made Sara's acquaintance she should sit and stare at her with profound admiration You can speak French can't you? she said respectfully Sara got on to the window-seat which was a big deep one and tucking up her feet sat with her hands clasped round her knees I can speak it because I have heard it all my life she answered You could speak it if you had always heard it Oh no I couldn't said Ermengarde I NEVER could speak it! Why? inquired Sara curiously Ermengarde shook her head so that the pigtail wobbled You heard me just now she said I'm always like that I can't SAY the words They're so queer She paused a moment and then added with a touch of awe in her voice You are CLEVER aren't you? Sara looked out of the window into the dingy square where the sparrows were hopping and twittering on the wet iron railings and the sooty branches of the trees She reflected a few moments She had heard it said very often that she was clever and she wondered if she was--and IF she was how it had happened I don't know she said I can't tell Then seeing a mournful look on the round chubby face she gave a little laugh and changed the subject Would you like to see Emily? she inquired Who is Emily? Ermengarde asked just as Miss Minchin had done Come up to my room and see said Sara holding out her hand They jumped down from the window-seat together and went upstairs Is it true Ermengarde whispered as they went through the hall- - is it true that you have a playroom all to yourself? Yes Sara answered Papa asked Miss Minchin to let me have one because--well it was because when I play I make up stories and tell them to myself and I don't like people to hear me It spoils it if I think people listen They had reached the passage leading to Sara's room by this time and Ermengarde stopped short staring and quite losing her breath You MAKE up stories! she gasped Can you do that--as well as speak French? CAN you? Sara looked at her in simple surprise Why anyone can make up things she said Have you never tried? She put her hand warningly on Ermengarde's Let us go very quietly to the door she whispered and then I will open it quite suddenly; perhaps we may catch her She was half laughing but there was a touch of mysterious hope in her eyes which fascinated Ermengarde though she had not the remotest idea what it meant or whom it was she wanted to catch or why she wanted to catch her Whatsoever she meant Ermengarde was sure it was something delightfully exciting So quite thrilled with expectation she followed her on tiptoe along the passage They made not the least noise until they reached the door Then Sara suddenly turned the handle and threw it wide open Its opening revealed the room quite neat and quiet a fire gently burning in the grate and a wonderful doll sitting in a chair by it apparently reading a book
children	This is Ermengarde St John Emily Ermengarde this is Emily Would you like to hold her? Oh may I? said Ermengarde May I really? She is beautiful! And Emily was put into her arms Never in her dull short life had Miss St John dreamed of such an hour as the one she spent with the queer new pupil before they heard the lunch-bell ring and were obliged to go downstairs Sara sat upon the hearth-rug and told her strange things She sat rather huddled up and her green eyes shone and her cheeks flushed She told stories of the voyage and stories of India; but what fascinated Ermengarde the most was her fancy about the dolls who walked and talked and who could do anything they chose when the human beings were out of the room but who must keep their powers a secret and so flew back to their places like lightning when people returned to the room WE couldn't do it said Sara seriously You see it's a kind of magic Once when she was relating the story of the search for Emily Ermengarde saw her face suddenly change A cloud seemed to pass over it and put out the light in her shining eyes She drew her breath in so sharply that it made a funny sad little sound and then she shut her lips and held them tightly closed as if she was determined either to do or NOT to do something Ermengarde had an idea that if she had been like any other little girl she might have suddenly burst out sobbing and crying But she did not Have you a--a pain? Ermengarde ventured Yes Sara answered after a moment's silence But it is not in my body Then she added something in a low voice which she tried to keep quite steady and it was this: Do you love your father more than anything else in all the whole world? Ermengarde's mouth fell open a little She knew that it would be far from behaving like a respectable child at a select seminary to say that it had never occurred to you that you COULD love your father that you would do anything desperate to avoid being left alone in his society for ten minutes She was indeed greatly embarrassed I--I scarcely ever see him she stammered He is always in the library--reading things I love mine more than all the world ten times over Sara said That is what my pain is He has gone away She put her head quietly down on her little huddled-up knees and sat very still for a few minutes She's going to cry out loud thought Ermengarde fearfully But she did not Her short black locks tumbled about her ears and she sat still Then she spoke without lifting her head I promised him I would bear it she said And I will You have to bear things Think what soldiers bear! Papa is a soldier If there was a war he would have to bear marching and thirstiness and perhaps deep wounds And he would never say a word--not one word Ermengarde could only gaze at her but she felt that she was beginning to adore her She was so wonderful and different from anyone else Presently she lifted her face and shook back her black locks with a queer little smile If I go on talking and talking she said and telling you things about pretending I shall bear it better You don't forget but you bear it better Ermengarde did not know why a lump came into her throat and her eyes felt as if tears were in them Lavinia and Jessie are `best friends ' she said rather huskily I wish we could be `best friends ' Would you have me for yours? You're clever and I'm the stupidest child in the school but I-- oh I do so like you! I'm glad of that said Sara It makes you thankful when you are liked Yes We will be friends And I'll tell you what -- a sudden gleam lighting her face-- I can help you with your French lessons 4 Lottie If Sara had been a different kind of child the life she led at Miss Minchin's Select Seminary for the next few years would not have been at all good for her She was treated more as if she
children	things over to Ermengarde as time went on Things happen to people by accident she used to say A lot of nice accidents have happened to me It just HAPPENED that I always liked lessons and books and could remember things when I learned them It just happened that I was born with a father who was beautiful and nice and clever and could give me everything I liked Perhaps I have not really a good temper at all but if you have everything you want and everyone is kind to you how can you help but be good-tempered? I don't know --looking quite serious-- how I shall ever find out whether I am really a nice child or a horrid one Perhaps I'm a HIDEOUS child and no one will ever know just because I never have any trials Lavinia has no trials said Ermengarde stolidly and she is horrid enough Sara rubbed the end of her little nose reflectively as she thought the matter over Well she said at last perhaps--perhaps that is because Lavinia is GROWING This was the result of a charitable recollection of having heard Miss Amelia say that Lavinia was growing so fast that she believed it affected her health and temper Lavinia in fact was spiteful She was inordinately jealous of Sara Until the new pupil's arrival she had felt herself the leader in the school She had led because she was capable of making herself extremely disagreeable if the others did not follow her She domineered over the little children and assumed grand airs with those big enough to be her companions She was rather pretty and had been the best-dressed pupil in the procession when the Select Seminary walked out two by two until Sara's velvet coats and sable muffs appeared combined with drooping ostrich feathers and were led by Miss Minchin at the head of the line This at the beginning had been bitter enough; but as time went on it became apparent that Sara was a leader too and not because she could make herself disagreeable but because she never did There's one thing about Sara Crewe Jessie had enraged her best friend by saying honestly she's never `grand' about herself the least bit and you know she might be Lavvie I believe I couldn't help being--just a little--if I had so many fine things and was made such a fuss over It's disgusting the way Miss Minchin shows her off when parents come `Dear Sara must come into the drawing room and talk to Mrs Musgrave about India ' mimicked Lavinia in her most highly flavored imitation of Miss Minchin `Dear Sara must speak French to Lady Pitkin Her accent is so perfect ' She didn't learn her French at the Seminary at any rate And there's nothing so clever in her knowing it She says herself she didn't learn it at all She just picked it up because she always heard her papa speak it And as to her papa there is nothing so grand in being an Indian officer Well said Jessie slowly he's killed tigers He killed the one in the skin Sara has in her room That's why she likes it so She lies on it and strokes its head and talks to it as if it was a cat She's always doing something silly snapped Lavinia My mamma says that way of hers of pretending things is silly She says she will grow up eccentric It was quite true that Sara was never grand She was a friendly little soul and shared her privileges and belongings with a free hand The little ones who were accustomed to being disdained and ordered out of the way by mature ladies aged ten and twelve were never made to cry by this most envied of them all She was a motherly young person and when people fell down and scraped their knees she ran and helped them up and patted them or found in her pocket a bonbon or some other article of a soothing nature She never pushed them out of her way or alluded to their years as a humiliation and a blot upon their small characters If you are four you are four she said severely to Lavinia on an occasion of her having--it must be confessed--slapped Lottie and called her a brat; but you will be five next year and six the year after that And opening large convicting eyes it takes sixteen years to make you twenty Dear me said Lavinia how we can calculate! In fact it was not to be denied that sixteen and four made twenty--and twenty was an age the most daring were scarcely bold enough to dream of So the younger children adored Sara More than once she had been known to have a tea party made up of these despised ones in her own room And Emily had been played with and Emily's own tea service used-- the one with cups which held quite a lot of much-sweetened weak tea and had blue flowers on them No one had seen such a very real doll's tea set before From that afternoon Sara was regarded as a goddess and a queen by the entire alphabet class Lottle Legh worshipped her to such an extent that if Sara had not
children	Amelia trying to suppress the angry wails of some child who evidently refused to be silenced She refused so strenuously indeed that Miss Minchin was obliged to almost shout--in a stately and severe manner-- to make herself heard What IS she crying for? she almost yelled Oh--oh--oh! Sara heard; I haven't got any mam--ma-a! Oh Lottie! screamed Miss Amelia Do stop darling! Don't cry! Please don't! Oh! Oh! Oh! Oh! Oh! Lottle howled tempestuously Haven't- -got--any--mam--ma-a! She ought to be whipped Miss Minchin proclaimed You SHALL be whipped you naughty child! Lottle wailed more loudly than ever Miss Amelia began to cry Miss Minchin's voice rose until it almost thundered then suddenly she sprang up from her chair in impotent indignation and flounced out of the room leaving Miss Amelia to arrange the matter Sara had paused in the hall wondering if she ought to go into the room because she had recently begun a friendly acquaintance with Lottie and might be able to quiet her When Miss Minchin came out and saw her she looked rather annoyed She realized that her voice as heard from inside the room could not have sounded either dignified or amiable Oh Sara! she exclaimed endeavoring to produce a suitable smile I stopped explained Sara because I knew it was Lottie-- and I thought perhaps--just perhaps I could make her be quiet May I try Miss Minchin? If you can you are a clever child answered Miss Minchin drawing in her mouth sharply Then seeing that Sara looked slightly chilled by her asperity she changed her manner But you are clever in everything she said in her approving way I dare say you can manage her Go in And she left her When Sara entered the room Lottie was lying upon the floor screaming and kicking her small fat legs violently and Miss Amelia was bending over her in consternation and despair looking quite red and damp with heat Lottie had always found when in her own nursery at home that kicking and screaming would always be quieted by any means she insisted on Poor plump Miss Amelia was trying first one method and then another Poor darling she said one moment I know you haven't any mamma poor-- Then in quite another tone If you don't stop Lottie I will shake you Poor little angel! There--! You wicked bad detestable child I will smack you! I will! Sara went to them quietly She did not know at all what she was going to do but she had a vague inward conviction that it would be better not to say such different kinds of things quite so helplessly and excitedly Miss Amelia she said in a low voice Miss Minchin says I may try to make her stop--may I? Miss Amelia turned and looked at her hopelessly Oh DO you think you can? she gasped I don't know whether I CAN answered Sara still in her half- whisper; but I will try Miss Amelia stumbled up from her knees with a heavy sigh and Lottie's fat little legs kicked as hard as ever If you will steal out of the room said Sara I will stay with her Oh Sara! almost whimpered Miss Amelia We never had such a dreadful child before I don't believe we can keep her But she crept out of the room and was very much relieved to find an excuse for doing it Sara stood by the howling furious child for a few moments and looked down at her without saying anything Then she sat down flat on the floor beside her and waited Except for Lottie's angry screams the room was quite quiet This was a new state of affairs for little Miss Legh who was accustomed when she screamed to hear other people protest and implore and command and coax by turns To lie and kick and shriek and find the only person near you not seeming to mind in the least attracted her attention She opened her tight-shut streaming eyes to see who this person was And it was only another little girl But it was the one who owned Emily and all the nice things And she was looking at her steadily and as if she was merely thinking Having paused for a few seconds to find this out Lottie thought she must begin again but the quiet of the room and of Sara's odd interested face made her first howl rather half-hearted I--haven't--any--ma--ma--ma-a! she announced; but her voice was
children	sometimes to see me--though I don't see her So does yours Perhaps they can both see us now Perhaps they are both in this room Lottle sat bolt upright and looked about her She was a pretty little curly-headed creature and her round eyes were like wet forget-me-nots If her mamma had seen her during the last half-hour she might not have thought her the kind of child who ought to be related to an angel Sara went on talking Perhaps some people might think that what she said was rather like a fairy story but it was all so real to her own imagination that Lottie began to listen in spite of herself She had been told that her mamma had wings and a crown and she had been shown pictures of ladies in beautiful white nightgowns who were said to be angels But Sara seemed to be telling a real story about a lovely country where real people were There are fields and fields of flowers she said forgetting herself as usual when she began and talking rather as if she were in a dream fields and fields of lilies--and when the soft wind blows over them it wafts the scent of them into the air--and everybody always breathes it because the soft wind is always blowing And little children run about in the lily fields and gather armfuls of them and laugh and make little wreaths And the streets are shining And people are never tired however far they walk They can float anywhere they like And there are walls made of pearl and gold all round the city but they are low enough for the people to go and lean on them and look down onto the earth and smile and send beautiful messages Whatsoever story she had begun to tell Lottie would no doubt have stopped crying and been fascinated into listening; but there was no denying that this story was prettier than most others She dragged herself close to Sara and drank in every word until the end came--far too soon When it did come she was so sorry that she put up her lip ominously I want to go there she cried I--haven't any mamma in this school Sara saw the danger signal and came out of her dream She took hold of the chubby hand and pulled her close to her side with a coaxing little laugh I will be your mamma she said We will play that you are my little girl And Emily shall be your sister Lottie's dimples all began to show themselves Shall she? she said Yes answered Sara jumping to her feet Let us go and tell her And then I will wash your face and brush your hair To which Lottie agreed quite cheerfully and trotted out of the room and upstairs with her without seeming even to remember that the whole of the last hour's tragedy had been caused by the fact that she had refused to be washed and brushed for lunch and Miss Minchin had been called in to use her majestic authority And from that time Sara was an adopted mother 5 Becky Of course the greatest power Sara possessed and the one which gained her even more followers than her luxuries and the fact that she was the show pupil the power that Lavinia and certain other girls were most envious of and at the same time most fascinated by in spite of themselves was her power of telling stories and of making everything she talked about seem like a story whether it was one or not Anyone who has been at school with a teller of stories knows what the wonder means--how he or she is followed about and besought in a whisper to relate romances; how groups gather round and hang on the outskirts of the favored party in the hope of being allowed to join in and listen Sara not only could tell stories but she adored telling them When she sat or stood in the midst of a circle and began to invent wonderful things her green eyes grew big and shining her cheeks flushed and without knowing that she was doing it she began to act and made what she told lovely or alarming by the raising or dropping of her voice the bend and sway of her slim body and the dramatic movement of her hands She forgot that she was talking to listening children; she saw and lived with the fairy folk or the kings and queens and beautiful ladies whose adventures she was narrating Sometimes when she had finished her story she was quite out of breath with excitement and would lay her hand on her thin little quick-rising chest and half laugh as if at herself When I am telling it she would say it doesn't seem as if it was only made up It seems more real than you are--more real than the schoolroom I feel as if I were all the people in the
children	said the Story Girl seeing that I was too modest to say it myself Aren't you going to have a story page? asked Peter We will if you'll be fiction and poetry editor I said Peter in his secret soul was dismayed but he would not blanch before Felicity All right he said recklessly We can put anything we like in the scrap book department I explained but all the other contributions must be original and all must have the name of the writer signed to them except the personals We must all do our best Our Magazine is to be 'a feast of reason and flow of soul ' I felt that I had worked in two quotations with striking effect The others with the exception of the Story Girl looked suitably impressed But said Cecily reproachfully haven't you anything for Sara Ray to do? She'll feel awful bad if she is left out I had forgotten Sara Ray Nobody except Cecily ever did remember Sara Ray unless she was on the spot But we decided to put her in as advertising manager That sounded well and really meant very little Well we'll go ahead then I said with a sigh of relief that the project had been so easily launched We'll get the first issue out about the first of January And whatever else we do we mustn't let Uncle Roger get hold of it He'd make such fearful fun of it I hope we can make a success of it said Peter moodily He had been moody ever since he was entrapped into being fiction editor It will be a success if we are determined to succeed I said 'Where there is a will there is always a way ' That's just what Ursula Townley said when her father locked her in her room the night she was going to run away with Kenneth MacNair said the Story Girl We pricked up our ears scenting a story Who were Ursula Townley and Kenneth MacNair? I asked Kenneth MacNair was a first cousin of the Awkward Man's grandfather and Ursula Townley was the belle of the Island in her day Who do you suppose told me the story--no read it to me out of his brown book? Never the Awkward Man himself! I exclaimed incredulously Yes he did said the Story Girl triumphantly I met him one day last week back in the maple woods when I was looking for ferns He was sitting by the spring writing in his brown book He hid it when he saw me and looked real silly; but after I had talked to him awhile I just asked him about it and told him that the gossips said he wrote poetry in it and if he did would he tell me because I was dying to know He said he wrote a little of everything in it; and then I begged him to read me something out of it and he read me the story of Ursula and Kenneth I don't see how you ever had the face said Felicity; and even Cecily looked as if she thought the Story Girl had gone rather far Never mind that cried Felix but tell us the story That's the main thing I'll tell it just as the Awkward Man read it as far as I can said the Story Girl but I can't put all his nice poetical touches in because I can't remember them all though he read it over twice for me CHAPTER II A WILL A WAY AND A WOMAN One day over a hundred years ago Ursula Townley was waiting for Kenneth MacNair in a great beechwood where brown nuts were falling and an October wind was making the leaves dance on the ground like pixy-people What are pixy-people? demanded Peter forgetting the Story Girl's dislike of interruptions Hush whispered Cecily That is only one of the Awkward Man's poetical touches I guess There were cultivated fields between the grove and the dark blue gulf; but far behind and on each side were woods for Prince Edward Island a hundred years ago was not what it is today The
children	spirit quailed Old Hugh had really nothing against Kenneth himself; but years before either Kenneth or Ursula was born Kenneth's father had beaten Hugh Townley in a hotly contested election Political feeling ran high in those days and old Hugh had never forgiven the MacNair his victory The feud between the families dated from that tempest in the provincial teapot and the surplus of votes on the wrong side was the reason why thirty years after Ursula had to meet her lover by stealth if she met him at all Was the MacNair a Conservative or a Grit? asked Felicity It doesn't make any difference what he was said the Story Girl impatiently Even a Tory would be romantic a hundred years ago Well Ursula couldn't see Kenneth very often for Kenneth lived fifteen miles away and was often absent from home in his vessel On this particular day it was nearly three months since they had met The Sunday before young Sandy MacNair had been in Carlyle church He had risen at dawn that morning walked bare-footed for eight miles along the shore carrying his shoes hired a harbour fisherman to row him over the channel and then walked eight miles more to the church at Carlyle less it is to be feared from a zeal for holy things than that he might do an errand for his adored brother Kenneth He carried a letter which he contrived to pass into Ursula's hand in the crowd as the people came out This letter asked Ursula to meet Kenneth in the beechwood the next afternoon and so she stole away there when suspicious father and watchful stepmother thought she was spinning in the granary loft It was very wrong of her to deceive her parents said Felicity primly The Story Girl couldn't deny this so she evaded the ethical side of the question skilfully I am not telling you what Ursula Townley ought to have done she said loftily I am only telling you what she DID do If you don't want to hear it you needn't listen of course There wouldn't be many stories to tell if nobody ever did anything she shouldn't do Well when Kenneth came the meeting was just what might have been expected between two lovers who had taken their last kiss three months before So it was a good half-hour before Ursula said 'Oh Kenneth I cannot stay long--I shall be missed You said in your letter that you had something important to talk of What is it?' 'My news is this Ursula Next Saturday morning my vessel The Fair Lady with her captain on board sails at dawn from Charlottetown harbour bound for Buenos Ayres At this season this means a safe and sure return--next May ' 'Kenneth!' cried Ursula She turned pale and burst into tears 'How can you think of leaving me? Oh you are cruel!' 'Why no sweetheart ' laughed Kenneth 'The captain of The Fair Lady will take his bride with him We'll spend our honeymoon on the high seas Ursula and the cold Canadian winter under southern palms ' 'You want me to run away with you Kenneth?' exclaimed Ursula 'Indeed dear girl there's nothing else to do!' 'Oh I cannot!' she protested 'My father would--' 'We'll not consult him--until afterward Come Ursula you know there's no other way We've always known it must come to this YOUR father will never forgive me for MY father You won't fail me now Think of the long parting if you send me away alone on such a voyage Pluck up your courage and we'll let Townleys and MacNairs whistle their mouldy feuds down the wind while we sail southward in The Fair Lady I have a plan ' 'Let me hear it ' said Ursula beginning to get back her breath 'There is to be a dance at The Springs Friday night Are you invited Ursula?' 'Yes ' 'Good I am not--but I shall be there--in the fir grove behind the house with two horses When the dancing is at its height you'll steal out to meet me Then 'tis but a fifteen mile ride to Charlottetown where a good minister who is a friend of mine will be ready to marry us By the time the dancers have tired their heels you and I will be on our vessel able to snap our fingers at fate ' 'And what if I do not meet you in the fir grove?' said Ursula a little impertinently 'If you do not I'll sail for South America the next morning and many a long year will pass ere Kenneth MacNair comes home again '
children	that same Ursula but that kind didn't all die out a hundred years ago And she had good reason for being vain She wore the sea- green silk which had been brought out from England a year before and worn but once--at the Christmas ball at Government House A fine stiff rustling silk it was and over it shone Ursula's crimson cheeks and gleaming eyes and masses of nut brown hair As she turned from the glass she heard her father's voice below loud and angry Growing very pale she ran out into the hall Her father was already half way upstairs his face red with fury In the hall below Ursula saw her step-mother looking troubled and vexed At the door stood Malcolm Ramsay a homely neighbour youth who had been courting Ursula in his clumsy way ever since she grew up Ursula had always hated him 'Ursula!' shouted old Hugh 'come here and tell this scoundrel he lies He says that you met Kenneth MacNair in the beechgrove last Tuesday Tell him he lies! Tell him he lies!' Ursula was no coward She looked scornfully at poor Ramsay 'The creature is a spy and a tale-bearer ' she said 'but in this he does not lie I DID meet Kenneth MacNair last Tuesday ' 'And you dare to tell me this to my face!' roared old Hugh 'Back to your room girl! Back to your room and stay there! Take off that finery You go to no more dances You shall stay in that room until I choose to let you out No not a word! I'll put you there if you don't go In with you--ay and take your knitting with you Occupy yourself with that this evening instead of kicking your heels at The Springs!' He snatched a roll of gray stocking from the hall table and flung it into Ursula's room Ursula knew she would have to follow it or be picked up and carried in like a naughty child So she gave the miserable Ramsay a look that made him cringe and swept into her room with her head in the air The next moment she heard the door locked behind her Her first proceeding was to have a cry of anger and shame and disappointment That did no good and then she took to marching up and down her room It did not calm her to hear the rumble of the carriage out of the gate as her uncle and aunt departed 'Oh what's to be done?' she sobbed 'Kenneth will be furious He will think I have failed him and he will go away hot with anger against me If I could only send a word of explanation I know he would not leave me But there seems to be no way at all--though I have heard that there's always a way when there's a will Oh I shall go mad! If the window were not so high I would jump out of it But to break my legs or my neck would not mend the matter ' The afternoon passed on At sunset Ursula heard hoof-beats and ran to the window Andrew Kinnear of The Springs was tying his horse at the door He was a dashing young fellow and a political crony of old Hugh No doubt he would be at the dance that night Oh if she could get speech for but a moment with him! When he had gone into the house Ursula turning impatiently from the window tripped and almost fell over the big ball of homespun yarn her father had flung on the floor For a moment she gazed at it resentfully--then with a gay little laugh she pounced on it The next moment she was at her table writing a brief note to Kenneth MacNair When it was written Ursula unwound the gray ball to a considerable depth pinned the note on it and rewound the yarn over it A gray ball the color of the twilight might escape observation where a white missive fluttering down from an upper window would surely be seen by someone Then she softly opened her window and waited It was dusk when Andrew went away Fortunately old Hugh did not come to the door with him As Andrew untied his horse Ursula threw the ball with such good aim that it struck him as she had meant it to do squarely on the head Andrew looked up at her window She leaned out put her finger warningly on her lips pointed to the ball and nodded Andrew looking somewhat puzzled picked up the ball sprang to his saddle and galloped off So far well thought Ursula But would Andrew understand? Would he have wit enough to think of exploring the big knobby ball for its delicate secret? And would he be at the dance after all? The evening dragged by Time had never seemed so long to Ursula She could not rest or sleep It was midnight before she heard the patter of a handful of gravel on her window-panes In a trice she was leaning out Below in the darkness stood Kenneth MacNair 'Oh Kenneth did you get my letter? And is it safe for you to be here?' 'Safe enough Your father is in bed I've waited two hours down the road for his light to go out and an extra half-hour to put him to sleep The horses are there Slip down and out Ursula We'll make Charlottetown by dawn yet ' 'That's easier said than done lad I'm locked in But do you go out behind the new barn and bring the ladder you will find there ' Five minutes later Miss Ursula hooded and cloaked scrambled
children	It must be rather romantic to be run away with remarked Cecily wistfully Don't you get such silly notions in your head Cecily King said Felicity severely CHAPTER III THE CHRISTMAS HARP Great was the excitement in the houses of King as Christmas drew nigh The air was simply charged with secrets Everybody was very penurious for weeks beforehand and hoards were counted scrutinizingly every day Mysterious pieces of handiwork were smuggled in and out of sight and whispered consultations were held about which nobody thought of being jealous as might have happened at any other time Felicity was in her element for she and her mother were deep in preparations for the day Cecily and the Story Girl were excluded from these doings with indifference on Aunt Janet's part and what seemed ostentatious complacency on Felicity's Cecily took this to heart and complained to me about it I'm one of this family just as much as Felicity is she said with as much indignation as Cecily could feel and I don't think she need shut me out of everything When I wanted to stone the raisins for the mince-meat she said no she would do it herself because Christmas mince-meat was very particular--as if I couldn't stone raisins right! The airs Felicity puts on about her cooking just make me sick concluded Cecily wrathfully It's a pity she doesn't make a mistake in cooking once in a while herself I said Then maybe she wouldn't think she knew so much more than other people All parcels that came in the mail from distant friends were taken charge of by Aunts Janet and Olivia not to be opened until the great day of the feast itself How slowly the last week passed! But even watched pots will boil in the fulness of time and finally Christmas day came gray and dour and frost-bitten without but full of revelry and rose-red mirth within Uncle Roger and Aunt Olivia and the Story Girl came over early for the day; and Peter came too with his shining morning face to be hailed with joy for we had been afraid that Peter would not be able to spend Christmas with us His mother had wanted him home with her Of course I ought to go Peter had told me mournfully but we won't have turkey for dinner because ma can't afford it And ma always cries on holidays because she says they make her think of father Of course she can't help it but it ain't cheerful Aunt Jane wouldn't have cried Aunt Jane used to say she never saw the man who was worth spoiling her eyes for But I guess I'll have to spend Christmas at home At the last moment however a cousin of Mrs Craig's in Charlottetown invited her for Christmas and Peter being given his choice of going or staying joyfully elected to stay So we were all together except Sara Ray who had been invited but whose mother wouldn't let her come Sara Ray's mother is a nuisance snapped the Story Girl She just lives to make that poor child miserable and she won't let her go to the party tonight either It is just breaking Sara's heart that she can't said Cecily compassionately I'm almost afraid I won't enjoy myself for thinking of her home there alone most likely reading the Bible while we're at the party She might be worse occupied than reading the Bible said Felicity rebukingly But Mrs Ray makes her read it as a punishment protested Cecily Whenever Sara cries to go anywhere--and of course she'll cry tonight--Mrs Ray makes her read seven chapters in the Bible I wouldn't think that would make her very fond of it And I'll not be able to talk the party over with Sara afterwards--and that's half the fun gone You can tell her all about it comforted Felix Telling isn't a bit like talking it over retorted Cecily It's too one-sided We had an exciting time opening our presents Some of us had more than others but we all received enough to make us feel comfortably that we were not unduly neglected in the matter The contents of the box which the Story Girl's father had sent her from Paris made our eyes stick out It was full of beautiful things among them another red silk dress--not the bright flame- hued tint of her old one but a rich dark crimson with the most distracting flounces and bows and ruffles; and with it were little red satin slippers with gold buckles and heels that made Aunt Janet hold up her hands in horror Felicity remarked scornfully that she would have thought the Story Girl would get tired wearing
children	The Story Girl also got a present from the Awkward Man--a little shabby worn volume with a great many marks on the leaves Why it isn't new--it's an old book! exclaimed Felicity I didn't think the Awkward Man was mean whatever else he was Oh you don't understand Felicity said the Story Girl patiently And I don't suppose I can make you understand But I'll try I'd ten times rather have this than a new book It's one of his own don't you see--one that he has read a hundred times and loved and made a friend of A new book just out of a shop wouldn't be the same thing at all It wouldn't MEAN anything I consider it a great compliment that he has given me this book I'm prouder of it than of anything else I've got Well you're welcome to it said Felicity I don't understand and I don't want to I wouldn't give anybody a Christmas present that wasn't new and I wouldn't thank anybody who gave me one Peter was in the seventh heaven because Felicity had given him a present--and moreover one that she had made herself It was a bookmark of perforated cardboard with a gorgeous red and yellow worsted goblet worked on it and below in green letters the solemn warning Touch Not The Cup As Peter was not addicted to habits of intemperance not even to looking on dandelion wine when it was pale yellow we did not exactly see why Felicity should have selected such a device But Peter was perfectly satisfied so nobody cast any blight on his happiness by carping criticism Later on Felicity told me she had worked the bookmark for him because his father used to drink before he ran away I thought Peter ought to be warned in time she said Even Pat had a ribbon of blue which he clawed off and lost half an hour after it was tied on him Pat did not care for vain adornments of the body We had a glorious Christmas dinner fit for the halls of Lucullus and ate far more than was good for us none daring to make us afraid on that one day of the year And in the evening--oh rapture and delight!--we went to Kitty Marr's party It was a fine December evening; the sharp air of morning had mellowed until it was as mild as autumn There had been no snow and the long fields sloping down from the homestead were brown and mellow A weird dreamy stillness had fallen on the purple earth the dark fir woods the valley rims the sere meadows Nature seemed to have folded satisfied hands to rest knowing that her long wintry slumber was coming upon her At first when the invitations to the party had come Aunt Janet had said we could not go; but Uncle Alec interceded in our favour perhaps influenced thereto by Cecily's wistful eyes If Uncle Alec had a favourite among his children it was Cecily and he had grown even more indulgent towards her of late Now and then I saw him looking at her intently and following his eyes and thought I had somehow seen that Cecily was paler and thinner than she had been in the summer and that her soft eyes seemed larger and that over her little face in moments of repose there was a certain languor and weariness that made it very sweet and pathetic And I heard him tell Aunt Janet that he did not like to see the child getting so much the look of her Aunt Felicity Cecily is perfectly well said Aunt Janet sharply She's only growing very fast Don't be foolish Alec But after that Cecily had cups of cream where the rest of us got only milk; and Aunt Janet was very particular to see that she had her rubbers on whenever she went out On this merry Christmas evening however no fears or dim foreshadowings of any coming event clouded our hearts or faces Cecily looked brighter and prettier than I had ever seen her with her softly shining eyes and the nut brown gloss of her hair Felicity was too beautiful for words; and even the Story Girl between excitement and the crimson silk array blossomed out with a charm and allurement more potent than any regular loveliness-- and this in spite of the fact that Aunt Olivia had tabooed the red satin slippers and mercilessly decreed that stout shoes should be worn I know just how you feel about it you daughter of Eve she said with gay sympathy but December roads are damp and if you are going to walk to Marrs' you are not going to do it in those frivolous Parisian concoctions even with overboots on; so be brave dear heart and show that you have a soul above little red satin shoes Anyhow said Uncle Roger that red silk dress will break the hearts of all the feminine small fry at the party You'd break their spirits too if you wore the slippers Don't do it Sara Leave them one wee loophole of enjoyment What does Uncle Roger mean? whispered Felicity He means you girls are all dying of jealousy because of the Story Girl's dress said Dan I am not of a jealous disposition said Felicity loftily and she's entirely welcome to the dress--with a complexion like that
children	Mighty and sonorous was the music above our heads as the winds of the night stirred the great boughs tossing athwart the starlit sky Perhaps it was that aeolian harmony which recalled to the Story Girl a legend of elder days I read such a pretty story in one of Aunt Olivia's books last night she said It was called 'The Christmas Harp ' Would you like to hear it? It seems to me it would just suit this part of the road There isn't anything about--about ghosts in it is there? said Cecily timidly Oh no I wouldn't tell a ghost story here for anything I'd frighten myself too much This story is about one of the shepherds who saw the angels on the first Christmas night He was just a youth and he loved music with all his heart and he longed to be able to express the melody that was in his soul But he could not; he had a harp and he often tried to play on it; but his clumsy fingers only made such discord that his companions laughed at him and mocked him and called him a madman because he would not give it up but would rather sit apart by himself with his arms about his harp looking up into the sky while they gathered around their fire and told tales to wile away their long night vigils as they watched their sheep on the hills But to him the thoughts that came out of the great silence were far sweeter than their mirth; and he never gave up the hope which sometimes left his lips as a prayer that some day he might be able to express those thoughts in music to the tired weary forgetful world On the first Christmas night he was out with his fellow shepherds on the hills It was chill and dark and all except him were glad to gather around the fire He sat as usual by himself with his harp on his knee and a great longing in his heart And there came a marvellous light in the sky and over the hills as if the darkness of the night had suddenly blossomed into a wonderful meadow of flowery flame; and all the shepherds saw the angels and heard them sing And as they sang the harp that the young shepherd held began to play softly by itself and as he listened to it he realized that it was playing the same music that the angels sang and that all his secret longings and aspirations and strivings were expressed in it From that night whenever he took the harp in his hands it played the same music; and he wandered all over the world carrying it; wherever the sound of its music was heard hate and discord fled away and peace and good-will reigned No one who heard it could think an evil thought; no one could feel hopeless or despairing or bitter or angry When a man had once heard that music it entered into his soul and heart and life and became a part of him for ever Years went by; the shepherd grew old and bent and feeble; but still he roamed over land and sea that his harp might carry the message of the Christmas night and the angel song to all mankind At last his strength failed him and he fell by the wayside in the darkness; but his harp played as his spirit passed; and it seemed to him that a Shining One stood by him with wonderful starry eyes and said to him 'Lo the music thy harp has played for so many years has been but the echo of the love and sympathy and purity and beauty in thine own soul; and if at any time in the wanderings thou hadst opened the door of that soul to evil or envy or selfishness thy harp would have ceased to play Now thy life is ended; but what thou hast given to mankind has no end; and as long as the world lasts so long will the heavenly music of the Christmas harp ring in the ears of men ' When the sun rose the old shepherd lay dead by the roadside with a smile on his face; and in his hands was a harp with all its strings broken We left the fir woods as the tale was ended and on the opposite hill was home A dim light in the kitchen window betokened that Aunt Janet had no idea of going to bed until all her young fry were safely housed for the night Ma's waiting up for us said Dan I'd laugh if she happened to go to the door just as Felicity and Peter were strutting up I guess she'll be cross It's nearly twelve Christmas will soon be over said Cecily with a sigh Hasn't it been a nice one? It's the first we've all spent together Do you suppose we'll ever spend another together? Lots of 'em said Dan cheerily Why not? Oh I don't know answered Cecily her footsteps lagging somewhat Only things seem just a little too pleasant to last If Willy Fraser had had as much spunk as Peter Miss Cecily King mightn't be so low spirited quoth Dan significantly Cecily tossed her head and disdained reply There are really some remarks a self-respecting young lady must ignore CHAPTER IV NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS If we did not have a white Christmas we had a white New Year Midway between the two came a heavy snowfall It was winter in our orchard of old delights then --so truly winter that it was hard to believe summer had ever dwelt in it or that spring would
children	from choice and being sent home with her by your aunt or mother are two entirely different things and we thought Sara Ray ought to have sense enough to know it Outside there was a vivid rose of sunset behind the cold hills of fir and the long reaches of snowy fields glowed fairily pink in the western light The drifts along the edges of the meadows and down the lane looked as if a series of breaking waves had by the lifting of a magician's wand been suddenly transformed into marble even to their toppling curls of foam Slowly the splendour died giving place to the mystic beauty of a winter twilight when the moon is rising The hollow sky was a cup of blue The stars came out over the white glens and the earth was covered with a kingly carpet for the feet of the young year to press I'm so glad the snow came said the Story Girl If it hadn't the New Year would have seemed just as dingy and worn out as the old There's something very solemn about the idea of a New Year isn't there? Just think of three hundred and sixty-five whole days with not a thing happened in them yet I don't suppose anything very wonderful will happen in them said Felix pessimistically To Felix just then life was flat stale and unprofitable because it was his turn to go home with Sara Ray It makes me a little frightened to think of all that may happen in them said Cecily Miss Marwood says it is what we put into a year not what we get out of it that counts at last I'm always glad to see a New Year said the Story Girl I wish we could do as they do in Norway The whole family sits up until midnight and then just as the clock is striking twelve the father opens the door and welcomes the New Year in Isn't it a pretty custom? If ma would let us stay up till twelve we might do that too said Dan but she never will I call it mean If I ever have children I'll let them stay up to watch the New Year in said the Story Girl decidedly So will I said Peter but other nights they'll have to go to bed at seven You ought to be ashamed speaking of such things said Felicity with a scandalized face Peter shrank into the background abashed no doubt believing that he had broken some Family Guide precept all to pieces I didn't know it wasn't proper to mention children he muttered apologetically We ought to make some New Year resolutions suggested the Story Girl New Year's Eve is the time to make them I can't think of any resolutions I want to make said Felicity who was perfectly satisfied with herself I could suggest a few to you said Dan sarcastically There are so many I would like to make said Cecily that I'm afraid it wouldn't be any use trying to keep them all Well let's all make a few just for the fun of it and see if we can keep them I said And let's get paper and ink and write them out That will make them seem more solemn and binding And then pin them up on our bedroom walls where we'll see them every day suggested the Story Girl and every time we break a resolution we must put a cross opposite it That will show us what progress we are making as well as make us ashamed if we have too many crosses And let's have a Roll of Honour in Our Magazine suggested Felix and every month we'll publish the names of those who keep their resolutions perfect I think it's all nonsense said Felicity But she joined our circle around the table though she sat for a long time with a blank sheet before her Let's each make a resolution in turn I said I'll lead off And recalling with shame certain unpleasant differences of opinion I had lately had with Felicity I wrote down in my best hand I shall try to keep my temper always You'd better said Felicity tactfully It was Dan's turn next I can't think of anything to start with he said gnawing his penholder fiercely
children	What on earth do you want to give up eating apples for? asked Peter in astonishment Never mind returned Felix Apples make people fat you know said Felicity sweetly It seems a funny kind of resolution I said doubtfully I think our resolutions ought to be giving up wrong things or doing right ones You make your resolutions to suit yourself and I'll make mine to suit myself said Felix defiantly I shall never get drunk wrote Peter painstakingly But you never do said the Story Girl in astonishment Well it will be all the easier to keep the resolution argued Peter That isn't fair complained Dan If we all resolved not to do the things we never do we'd all be on the Roll of Honour You let Peter alone said Felicity severely It's a very good resolution and one everybody ought to make I shall not be jealous wrote the Story Girl But are you? I asked surprised The Story Girl coloured and nodded Of one thing she confessed but I'm not going to tell what it is I'm jealous sometimes too confessed Sara Ray and so my first resolution will be 'I shall try not to feel jealous when I hear the other girls in school describing all the sick spells they've had ' Goodness do you want to be sick? demanded Felix in astonishment It makes a person important explained Sara Ray I am going to try to improve my mind by reading good books and listening to older people wrote Cecily You got that out of the Sunday School paper cried Felicity It doesn't matter where I got it said Cecily with dignity The main thing is to keep it It's your turn Felicity I said Felicity tossed her beautiful golden head I told you I wasn't going to make any resolutions Go on yourself I shall always study my grammar lesson I wrote--I who loathed grammar with a deadly loathing I hate grammar too sighed Sara Ray It seems so unimportant Sara was rather fond of a big word but did not always get hold of the right one I rather suspected that in the above instance she really meant uninteresting I won't get mad at Felicity if I can help it wrote Dan I'm sure I never do anything to make you mad exclaimed Felicity I don't think it's polite to make resolutions about your sisters said Peter He can't keep it anyway scoffed Felicity He's got such an awful temper It's a family failing flashed Dan breaking his resolution ere the ink on it was dry There you go taunted Felicity I'll work all my arithmetic problems without any help scribbled Felix I wish I could resolve that too sighed Sara Ray but it wouldn't be any use I'd never be able to do those compound multiplication sums the teacher gives us to do at home every night if I didn't get Judy Pineau to help me Judy isn't a good reader and she can't spell AT ALL but you can't stick her in arithmetic as far as she went herself I feel sure concluded poor Sara in a hopeless tone that I'll NEVER be able to understand compound multiplication 'Multiplication is vexation Division is as bad
children	Markdale boys It was the day I was sitting up in the gallery Well I hope if you ever do the like again you won't do it in OUR pew said Felicity severely I ain't going to do it at all said Peter I felt sort of mean all the rest of the day I shall try not to be vexed when people interrupt me when I'm telling stories wrote the Story Girl but it will be hard she added with a sigh I never mind being interrupted said Felicity I shall try to be cheerful and smiling all the time wrote Cecily You are anyway said Sara Ray loyally I don't believe we ought to be cheerful ALL the time said the Story Girl The Bible says we ought to weep with those who weep But maybe it means that we're to weep cheerfully suggested Cecily Sorter as if you were thinking 'I'm very sorry for you but I'm mighty glad I'm not in the scrape too ' said Dan Dan don't be irreverent rebuked Felicity I know a story about old Mr and Mrs Davidson of Markdale said the Story Girl She was always smiling and it used to aggravate her husband so one day he said very crossly 'Old lady what ARE you grinning at?' 'Oh well Abiram everything's so bright and pleasant I've just got to smile ' Not long after there came a time when everything went wrong--the crop failed and their best cow died and Mrs Davidson had rheumatism; and finally Mr Davidson fell and broke his leg But still Mrs Davidson smiled 'What in the dickens are you grinning about now old lady?' he demanded 'Oh well Abiram ' she said 'everything is so dark and unpleasant I've just got to smile ' 'Well ' said the old man crossly 'I think you might give your face a rest sometimes ' I shall not talk gossip wrote Sara Ray with a satisfied air Oh don't you think that's a little TOO strict? asked Cecily anxiously Of course it's not right to talk MEAN gossip but the harmless kind doesn't hurt If I say to you that Emmy MacPhail is going to get a new fur collar this winter THAT is harmless gossip but if I say I don't see how Emmy MacPhail can afford a new fur collar when her father can't pay my father for the oats he got from him that would be MEAN gossip If I were you Sara I'd put MEAN gossip Sara consented to this amendment I will be polite to everybody was my third resolution which passed without comment I'll try not to use slang since Cecily doesn't like it wrote Dan I think some slang is real cute said Felicity The Family Guide says it's very vulgar grinned Dan Doesn't it Sara Stanley? Don't disturb me said the Story Girl dreamily I'm just thinking a beautiful thought I've thought of a resolution to make cried Felicity Mr Marwood said last Sunday we should always try to think beautiful thoughts and then our lives would be very beautiful So I shall resolve to think a beautiful thought every morning before breakfast Can you only manage one a day? queried Dan And why before breakfast? I asked Because it's easier to think on an empty stomach said Peter in all good faith But Felicity shot a furious glance at him I selected that time she explained with dignity because when I'm brushing my hair before my glass in the morning I'll see my resolution and remember it Mr Marwood meant that ALL our thoughts ought to be beautiful said the Story Girl If they were people wouldn't be afraid to say what they think They oughtn't to be afraid to anyhow said Felix stoutly I'm going to make a resolution to say just what I think always And do you expect to get through the year alive if you do? asked Dan
children	I s'pose you never said your prayers until we got you to go to church said Felicity--who had had no hand in inducing Peter to go to church but had stoutly opposed it as recorded in the first volume of our family history I did too said Peter Aunt Jane taught me to say my prayers Ma hadn't time being as father had run away; ma had to wash at night same as in day-time I shall learn to cook wrote the Story Girl frowning You'd better resolve not to make puddings of-- began Felicity then stopped as suddenly as if she had bitten off the rest of her sentence and swallowed it Cecily had nudged her so she had probably remembered the Story Girl's threat that she would never tell another story if she was ever twitted with the pudding she had made from sawdust But we all knew what Felicity had started to say and the Story Girl dealt her a most uncousinly glance I will not cry because mother won't starch my aprons wrote Sara Ray Better resolve not to cry about anything said Dan kindly Sara Ray shook her head forlornly That would be too hard to keep There are times when I HAVE to cry It's a relief Not to the folks who have to hear you muttered Dan aside to Cecily Oh hush whispered Cecily back Don't go and hurt her feelings the last night of the old year Is it my turn again? Well I'll resolve not to worry because my hair is not curly But oh I'll never be able to help wishing it was Why don't you curl it as you used to do then? asked Dan You know very well that I've never put my hair up in curl papers since the time Peter was dying of the measles said Cecily reproachfully I resolved then I wouldn't because I wasn't sure it was quite right I will keep my finger-nails neat and clean I wrote There that's four resolutions I'm not going to make any more Four's enough I shall always think twice before I speak wrote Felix That's an awful waste of time commented Dan but I guess you'll need to if you're always going to say what you think I'm going to stop with three said Peter I will have all the good times I can wrote the Story Girl THAT'S what I call sensible said Dan It's a very easy resolution to keep anyhow commented Felix I shall try to like reading the Bible wrote Sara Ray You ought to like reading the Bible without trying to exclaimed Felicity If you had to read seven chapters of it every time you were naughty I don't believe you would like it either retorted Sara Ray with a flash of spirit I shall try to believe only half of what I hear was Cecily's concluding resolution But which half? scoffed Dan The best half said sweet Cecily simply I'll try to obey mother ALWAYS wrote Sara Ray with a tremendous sigh as if she fully realized the difficulty of keeping such a resolution And that's all I'm going to make Felicity has only made one said the Story Girl I think it better to make just one and keep it than make a lot and break them said Felicity loftily She had the last word on the subject for it was time for Sara Ray to go and our circle broke up Sara and Felix departed and we watched them down the lane in the moonlight--Sara walking demurely in one runner track and Felix stalking grimly along in the other I fear the romantic beauty of that silver shining night was entirely thrown away on my mischievous brother And it was as I remember it a most exquisite night--a white poem a frosty starry lyric of light It was one of those nights on which one might fall asleep and dream happy dreams of gardens of mirth and song feeling all the while through one's sleep the soft splendour and radiance of the white moon-world outside as one hears soft far-away music sounding through the thoughts and
adult	others are the prop and pride of the financial world; still others hold undisputed sway among the 'Fancy and the Talent ' I choose them at my leisure from those who reply to my advertisements It is easy enough they are all cowards I could treble the number in twenty days if I wished So you see those who have in their keeping the reputations of their fellow-citizens I have in my pay They may turn on you I suggested He rubbed his thumb over his cropped ears and adjusted the wax substitutes I think not he murmured thoughtfully I seldom have to apply the whip and then only once Besides they like their wages How do you apply the whip? I demanded His face for a moment was awful to look upon His eyes dwindled to a pair of green sparks I invite them to come and have a little chat with me he said in a soft voice A knock at the door interrupted him and his face resumed its amiable expression Who is it? he inquired Mr Steylette was the answer Come to-morrow replied Mr Wilde Impossible began the other but was silenced by a sort of bark from Mr Wilde Come to-morrow he repeated We heard somebody move away from the door and turn the corner by the stairway Who is that? I asked Arnold Steylette Owner and Editor in Chief of the great New York daily He drummed on the ledger with his fingerless hand adding: I pay him very badly but he thinks it a good bargain Arnold Steylette! I repeated amazed Yes said Mr Wilde with a self-satisfied cough The cat which had entered the room as he spoke hesitated looked up at him and snarled He climbed down from the chair and squatting on the floor took the creature into his arms and caressed her The cat ceased snarling and presently began a loud purring which seemed to increase in timbre as he stroked her Where are the notes? I asked He pointed to the table and for the hundredth time I picked up the bundle of manuscript entitled-- THE IMPERIAL DYNASTY OF AMERICA One by one I studied the well-worn pages worn only by my own handling and although I knew all by heart from the beginning When from Carcosa the Hyades Hastur and Aldebaran to Castaigne Louis de Calvados born December 19th 1877 I read it with an eager rapt attention pausing to repeat parts of it aloud and dwelling especially on Hildred de Calvados only son of Hildred Castaigne and Edythe Landes Castaigne first in succession etc etc When I finished Mr Wilde nodded and coughed Speaking of your legitimate ambition he said how do Constance and Louis get along? She loves him I replied simply The cat on his knee suddenly turned and struck at his eyes and he flung her off and climbed on to the chair opposite me And Dr Archer! But that's a matter you can settle any time you wish he added Yes I replied Dr Archer can wait but it is time I saw my cousin Louis It is time he repeated Then he took another ledger from the table and ran over the leaves rapidly We are now in communication with ten thousand men he muttered We can count on one hundred thousand within the first twenty-eight hours and in forty-eight hours the state will rise _en masse_ The country follows the state and the portion that will not I mean California and the Northwest might better never have been inhabited I shall not send them the Yellow Sign The blood rushed to my head but I only answered A new broom sweeps clean The ambition of Caesar and of Napoleon pales before that which could not rest until it had seized the minds of men and controlled even their unborn thoughts said Mr Wilde You are speaking of the King in Yellow I groaned with a shudder
adult	campaign among the farms of Westchester and the music of their sabres against the stirrups and the jingle of spurs and carbines was delightful to me I saw Louis riding with his squadron He was as handsome an officer as I have ever seen Mr Wilde who had mounted a chair by the window saw him too but said nothing Louis turned and looked straight at Hawberk's shop as he passed and I could see the flush on his brown cheeks I think Constance must have been at the window When the last troopers had clattered by and the last pennons vanished into South Fifth Avenue Mr Wilde clambered out of his chair and dragged the chest away from the door Yes he said it is time that you saw your cousin Louis He unlocked the door and I picked up my hat and stick and stepped into the corridor The stairs were dark Groping about I set my foot on something soft which snarled and spit and I aimed a murderous blow at the cat but my cane shivered to splinters against the balustrade and the beast scurried back into Mr Wilde's room Passing Hawberk's door again I saw him still at work on the armour but I did not stop and stepping out into Bleecker Street I followed it to Wooster skirted the grounds of the Lethal Chamber and crossing Washington Park went straight to my rooms in the Benedick Here I lunched comfortably read the _Herald_ and the _Meteor_ and finally went to the steel safe in my bedroom and set the time combination The three and three-quarter minutes which it is necessary to wait while the time lock is opening are to me golden moments From the instant I set the combination to the moment when I grasp the knobs and swing back the solid steel doors I live in an ecstasy of expectation Those moments must be like moments passed in Paradise I know what I am to find at the end of the time limit I know what the massive safe holds secure for me for me alone and the exquisite pleasure of waiting is hardly enhanced when the safe opens and I lift from its velvet crown a diadem of purest gold blazing with diamonds I do this every day and yet the joy of waiting and at last touching again the diadem only seems to increase as the days pass It is a diadem fit for a King among kings an Emperor among emperors The King in Yellow might scorn it but it shall be worn by his royal servant I held it in my arms until the alarm in the safe rang harshly and then tenderly proudly I replaced it and shut the steel doors I walked slowly back into my study which faces Washington Square and leaned on the window sill The afternoon sun poured into my windows and a gentle breeze stirred the branches of the elms and maples in the park now covered with buds and tender foliage A flock of pigeons circled about the tower of the Memorial Church; sometimes alighting on the purple tiled roof sometimes wheeling downward to the lotos fountain in front of the marble arch The gardeners were busy with the flower beds around the fountain and the freshly turned earth smelled sweet and spicy A lawn mower drawn by a fat white horse clinked across the green sward and watering-carts poured showers of spray over the asphalt drives Around the statue of Peter Stuyvesant which in 1897 had replaced the monstrosity supposed to represent Garibaldi children played in the spring sunshine and nurse girls wheeled elaborate baby carriages with a reckless disregard for the pasty-faced occupants which could probably be explained by the presence of half a dozen trim dragoon troopers languidly lolling on the benches Through the trees the Washington Memorial Arch glistened like silver in the sunshine and beyond on the eastern extremity of the square the grey stone barracks of the dragoons and the white granite artillery stables were alive with colour and motion I looked at the Lethal Chamber on the corner of the square opposite A few curious people still lingered about the gilded iron railing but inside the grounds the paths were deserted I watched the fountains ripple and sparkle; the sparrows had already found this new bathing nook and the basins were covered with the dusty-feathered little things Two or three white peacocks picked their way across the lawns and a drab coloured pigeon sat so motionless on the arm of one of the Fates that it seemed to be a part of the sculptured stone As I was turning carelessly away a slight commotion in the group of curious loiterers around the gates attracted my attention A young man had entered and was advancing with nervous strides along the gravel path which leads to the bronze doors of the Lethal Chamber He paused a moment before the Fates and as he raised his head to those three mysterious faces the pigeon rose from its sculptured perch circled about for a moment and wheeled to the east The young man pressed his hand to his face and then with an undefinable gesture sprang up the marble steps the bronze doors closed behind him and half an hour later the loiterers slouched away and the frightened pigeon returned to its perch in the arms of Fate I put on my hat and went out into the park for a little walk before dinner As I crossed the central driveway a group of officers passed and one of them called out Hello Hildred and came back to shake hands with me It was my cousin Louis who stood smiling and tapping his spurred heels with his riding-whip Just back from Westchester he said; been doing the bucolic; milk and curds you know dairy-maids in sunbonnets who say 'haeow' and 'I don't think' when you tell them they are pretty I'm nearly dead for a square meal at Delmonico's What's the news? There is none I replied pleasantly I saw your regiment coming in this morning Did you? I didn't see you Where were you? In Mr Wilde's window
adult	I disliked his laugh because I knew it was forced but I nodded gaily and asked him where he was going Louis looked after his brother officers who had now almost reached Broadway We had intended to sample a Brunswick cocktail but to tell you the truth I was anxious for an excuse to go and see Hawberk instead Come along I'll make you my excuse We found old Hawberk neatly attired in a fresh spring suit standing at the door of his shop and sniffing the air I had just decided to take Constance for a little stroll before dinner he replied to the impetuous volley of questions from Louis We thought of walking on the park terrace along the North River At that moment Constance appeared and grew pale and rosy by turns as Louis bent over her small gloved fingers I tried to excuse myself alleging an engagement uptown but Louis and Constance would not listen and I saw I was expected to remain and engage old Hawberk's attention After all it would be just as well if I kept my eye on Louis I thought and when they hailed a Spring Street horse-car I got in after them and took my seat beside the armourer The beautiful line of parks and granite terraces overlooking the wharves along the North River which were built in 1910 and finished in the autumn of 1917 had become one of the most popular promenades in the metropolis They extended from the battery to 190th Street overlooking the noble river and affording a fine view of the Jersey shore and the Highlands opposite Cafes and restaurants were scattered here and there among the trees and twice a week military bands from the garrison played in the kiosques on the parapets We sat down in the sunshine on the bench at the foot of the equestrian statue of General Sheridan Constance tipped her sunshade to shield her eyes and she and Louis began a murmuring conversation which was impossible to catch Old Hawberk leaning on his ivory headed cane lighted an excellent cigar the mate to which I politely refused and smiled at vacancy The sun hung low above the Staten Island woods and the bay was dyed with golden hues reflected from the sun-warmed sails of the shipping in the harbour Brigs schooners yachts clumsy ferry-boats their decks swarming with people railroad transports carrying lines of brown blue and white freight cars stately sound steamers declasse tramp steamers coasters dredgers scows and everywhere pervading the entire bay impudent little tugs puffing and whistling officiously;--these were the craft which churned the sunlight waters as far as the eye could reach In calm contrast to the hurry of sailing vessel and steamer a silent fleet of white warships lay motionless in midstream Constance's merry laugh aroused me from my reverie What _are_ you staring at? she inquired Nothing--the fleet I smiled Then Louis told us what the vessels were pointing out each by its relative position to the old Red Fort on Governor's Island That little cigar shaped thing is a torpedo boat he explained; there are four more lying close together They are the _Tarpon_ the _Falcon_ the _Sea Fox_ and the _Octopus_ The gun-boats just above are the _Princeton_ the _Champlain_ the _Still Water_ and the _Erie_ Next to them lie the cruisers _Faragut_ and _Los Angeles_ and above them the battle ships _California_ and _Dakota_ and the _Washington_ which is the flag ship Those two squatty looking chunks of metal which are anchored there off Castle William are the double turreted monitors _Terrible_ and _Magnificent_; behind them lies the ram _Osceola_ Constance looked at him with deep approval in her beautiful eyes What loads of things you know for a soldier she said and we all joined in the laugh which followed Presently Louis rose with a nod to us and offered his arm to Constance and they strolled away along the river wall Hawberk watched them for a moment and then turned to me Mr Wilde was right he said I have found the missing tassets and left cuissard of the 'Prince's Emblazoned ' in a vile old junk garret in Pell Street 998? I inquired with a smile Yes Mr Wilde is a very intelligent man I observed I want to give him the credit of this most important discovery continued Hawberk And I intend it shall be known that he is entitled to the fame of it He won't thank you for that I answered sharply; please say nothing about it Do you know what it is worth? said Hawberk No fifty dollars perhaps It is valued at five hundred but the owner of the 'Prince's Emblazoned'
adult	Oh said Hawberk And eventually I continued more quietly it will secure the happiness of the whole world And incidentally your own happiness and prosperity as well as Mr Wilde's? Exactly I smiled But I could have throttled him for taking that tone He looked at me in silence for a while and then said very gently Why don't you give up your books and studies Mr Castaigne and take a tramp among the mountains somewhere or other? You used to be fond of fishing Take a cast or two at the trout in the Rangelys I don't care for fishing any more I answered without a shade of annoyance in my voice You used to be fond of everything he continued; athletics yachting shooting riding-- I have never cared to ride since my fall I said quietly Ah yes your fall he repeated looking away from me I thought this nonsense had gone far enough so I brought the conversation back to Mr Wilde; but he was scanning my face again in a manner highly offensive to me Mr Wilde he repeated do you know what he did this afternoon? He came downstairs and nailed a sign over the hall door next to mine; it read: MR WILDE REPAIRER OF REPUTATIONS Third Bell Do you know what a Repairer of Reputations can be? I do I replied suppressing the rage within Oh he said again Louis and Constance came strolling by and stopped to ask if we would join them Hawberk looked at his watch At the same moment a puff of smoke shot from the casemates of Castle William and the boom of the sunset gun rolled across the water and was re-echoed from the Highlands opposite The flag came running down from the flag-pole the bugles sounded on the white decks of the warships and the first electric light sparkled out from the Jersey shore As I turned into the city with Hawberk I heard Constance murmur something to Louis which I did not understand; but Louis whispered My darling in reply; and again walking ahead with Hawberk through the square I heard a murmur of sweetheart and my own Constance and I knew the time had nearly arrived when I should speak of important matters with my cousin Louis III One morning early in May I stood before the steel safe in my bedroom trying on the golden jewelled crown The diamonds flashed fire as I turned to the mirror and the heavy beaten gold burned like a halo about my head I remembered Camilla's agonized scream and the awful words echoing through the dim streets of Carcosa They were the last lines in the first act and I dared not think of what followed--dared not even in the spring sunshine there in my own room surrounded with familiar objects reassured by the bustle from the street and the voices of the servants in the hallway outside For those poisoned words had dropped slowly into my heart as death-sweat drops upon a bed-sheet and is absorbed Trembling I put the diadem from my head and wiped my forehead but I thought of Hastur and of my own rightful ambition and I remembered Mr Wilde as I had last left him his face all torn and bloody from the claws of that devil's creature and what he said--ah what he said The alarm bell in the safe began to whirr harshly and I knew my time was up; but I would not heed it and replacing the flashing circlet upon my head I turned defiantly to the mirror I stood for a long time absorbed in the changing expression of my own eyes The mirror reflected a face which was like my own but whiter and so thin that I hardly recognized it And all the time I kept repeating between my clenched teeth The day has come! the day has come! while the alarm in the safe whirred and clamoured and the diamonds sparkled and flamed above my brow I heard a door open but did not heed it It was only when I saw two faces in the mirror:--it was only when another face rose over my shoulder and two other eyes met mine I wheeled like a flash and seized a long knife from my dressing-table and my cousin sprang back very pale crying: Hildred! for God's sake! then as my hand fell he said: It is I Louis don't you know me? I stood silent I could not have spoken for my life He walked up to me and took the knife from my hand What is all this? he inquired in a gentle voice Are you ill? No I replied But I doubt if he heard me Come come old fellow he cried take off that brass crown and toddle into the study Are you going to a masquerade? What's all this theatrical
adult	Jumping mud creeks in Jersey he said I haven't had time to change yet; I was rather in a hurry to see you Haven't you got a glass of something? I'm dead tired; been in the saddle twenty-four hours I gave him some brandy from my medicinal store which he drank with a grimace Damned bad stuff he observed I'll give you an address where they sell brandy that is brandy It's good enough for my needs I said indifferently I use it to rub my chest with He stared and flicked at another fly See here old fellow he began I've got something to suggest to you It's four years now that you've shut yourself up here like an owl never going anywhere never taking any healthy exercise never doing a damn thing but poring over those books up there on the mantelpiece He glanced along the row of shelves Napoleon Napoleon Napoleon! he read For heaven's sake have you nothing but Napoleons there? I wish they were bound in gold I said But wait yes there is another book _The King in Yellow_ I looked him steadily in the eye Have you never read it? I asked I? No thank God! I don't want to be driven crazy I saw he regretted his speech as soon as he had uttered it There is only one word which I loathe more than I do lunatic and that word is crazy But I controlled myself and asked him why he thought _The King in Yellow_ dangerous Oh I don't know he said hastily I only remember the excitement it created and the denunciations from pulpit and Press I believe the author shot himself after bringing forth this monstrosity didn't he? I understand he is still alive I answered That's probably true he muttered; bullets couldn't kill a fiend like that It is a book of great truths I said Yes he replied of 'truths' which send men frantic and blast their lives I don't care if the thing is as they say the very supreme essence of art It's a crime to have written it and I for one shall never open its pages Is that what you have come to tell me? I asked No he said I came to tell you that I am going to be married I believe for a moment my heart ceased to beat but I kept my eyes on his face Yes he continued smiling happily married to the sweetest girl on earth Constance Hawberk I said mechanically How did you know? he cried astonished I didn't know it myself until that evening last April when we strolled down to the embankment before dinner When is it to be? I asked It was to have been next September but an hour ago a despatch came ordering our regiment to the Presidio San Francisco We leave at noon to-morrow To-morrow he repeated Just think Hildred to-morrow I shall be the happiest fellow that ever drew breath in this jolly world for Constance will go with me I offered him my hand in congratulation and he seized and shook it like the good-natured fool he was--or pretended to be I am going to get my squadron as a wedding present he rattled on Captain and Mrs Louis Castaigne eh Hildred? Then he told me where it was to be and who were to be there and made me promise to come and be best man I set my teeth and listened to his boyish chatter without showing what I felt but-- I was getting to the limit of my endurance and when he jumped up and switching his spurs till they jingled said he must go I did not detain him There's one thing I want to ask of you I said quietly Out with it it's promised he laughed I want you to meet me for a quarter of an hour's talk to-night Of course if you wish he said somewhat puzzled Where? Anywhere in the park there What time Hildred?
adult	It's that cursed cat he said ceasing his groans and turning his colourless eyes to me; she attacked me while I was asleep I believe she will kill me yet This was too much so I went into the kitchen and seizing a hatchet from the pantry started to find the infernal beast and settle her then and there My search was fruitless and after a while I gave it up and came back to find Mr Wilde squatting on his high chair by the table He had washed his face and changed his clothes The great furrows which the cat's claws had ploughed up in his face he had filled with collodion and a rag hid the wound in his throat I told him I should kill the cat when I came across her but he only shook his head and turned to the open ledger before him He read name after name of the people who had come to him in regard to their reputation and the sums he had amassed were startling I put on the screws now and then he explained One day or other some of these people will assassinate you I insisted Do you think so? he said rubbing his mutilated ears It was useless to argue with him so I took down the manuscript entitled Imperial Dynasty of America for the last time I should ever take it down in Mr Wilde's study I read it through thrilling and trembling with pleasure When I had finished Mr Wilde took the manuscript and turning to the dark passage which leads from his study to his bed-chamber called out in a loud voice Vance Then for the first time I noticed a man crouching there in the shadow How I had overlooked him during my search for the cat I cannot imagine Vance come in cried Mr Wilde The figure rose and crept towards us and I shall never forget the face that he raised to mine as the light from the window illuminated it Vance this is Mr Castaigne said Mr Wilde Before he had finished speaking the man threw himself on the ground before the table crying and grasping Oh God! Oh my God! Help me! Forgive me! Oh Mr Castaigne keep that man away You cannot you cannot mean it! You are different--save me! I am broken down--I was in a madhouse and now--when all was coming right--when I had forgotten the King--the King in Yellow and--but I shall go mad again--I shall go mad-- His voice died into a choking rattle for Mr Wilde had leapt on him and his right hand encircled the man's throat When Vance fell in a heap on the floor Mr Wilde clambered nimbly into his chair again and rubbing his mangled ears with the stump of his hand turned to me and asked me for the ledger I reached it down from the shelf and he opened it After a moment's searching among the beautifully written pages he coughed complacently and pointed to the name Vance Vance he read aloud Osgood Oswald Vance At the sound of his name the man on the floor raised his head and turned a convulsed face to Mr Wilde His eyes were injected with blood his lips tumefied Called April 28th continued Mr Wilde Occupation cashier in the Seaforth National Bank; has served a term of forgery at Sing Sing from whence he was transferred to the Asylum for the Criminal Insane Pardoned by the Governor of New York and discharged from the Asylum January 19 1918 Reputation damaged at Sheepshead Bay Rumours that he lives beyond his income Reputation to be repaired at once Retainer $1 500 Note --Has embezzled sums amounting to $30 000 since March 20 1919 excellent family and secured present position through uncle's influence Father President of Seaforth Bank I looked at the man on the floor Get up Vance said Mr Wilde in a gentle voice Vance rose as if hypnotized He will do as we suggest now observed Mr Wilde and opening the manuscript he read the entire history of the Imperial Dynasty of America Then in a kind and soothing murmur he ran over the important points with Vance who stood like one stunned His eyes were so blank and vacant that I imagined he had become half-witted and remarked it to Mr Wilde who replied that it was of no consequence anyway Very patiently we pointed out to Vance what his share in the affair would be and he seemed to understand after a while Mr Wilde explained the manuscript using several volumes on Heraldry to substantiate the result of his researches He mentioned the establishment of the Dynasty in Carcosa the lakes which connected Hastur Aldebaran and the mystery of the Hyades He spoke of Cassilda and Camilla and sounded the cloudy depths of Demhe and the Lake of Hali The scolloped tatters of the King in Yellow must hide Yhtill forever he muttered but I do not believe Vance heard him Then by degrees he led Vance along the ramifications of the Imperial family to Uoht and Thale from Naotalba and Phantom of Truth to Aldones and then tossing aside his manuscript and notes he began the wonderful story of the Last King Fascinated and thrilled I watched him He threw up his head his long arms were stretched out in a magnificent gesture of pride and power and his eyes blazed deep in their sockets like two emeralds Vance listened stupefied As for me when at last Mr Wilde had finished and pointing to me cried The cousin of the King! my head swam with excitement Controlling myself with a superhuman effort I explained to Vance why I alone was worthy of the crown and why my cousin must be exiled or die I made him understand that my cousin must never marry even after renouncing all his claims and how that least of all he should marry the daughter of the Marquis of Avonshire and bring England into the question I showed him a list of thousands of names which Mr Wilde had drawn up;
adult	the Judson Memorial Church and finally gathering up the manuscript and notes took my hat and started for the door Mr Wilde watched me in silence When I had stepped into the hall I looked back Mr Wilde's small eyes were still fixed on me Behind him the shadows gathered in the fading light Then I closed the door behind me and went out into the darkening streets I had eaten nothing since breakfast but I was not hungry A wretched half-starved creature who stood looking across the street at the Lethal Chamber noticed me and came up to tell me a tale of misery I gave him money I don't know why and he went away without thanking me An hour later another outcast approached and whined his story I had a blank bit of paper in my pocket on which was traced the Yellow Sign and I handed it to him He looked at it stupidly for a moment and then with an uncertain glance at me folded it with what seemed to me exaggerated care and placed it in his bosom The electric lights were sparkling among the trees and the new moon shone in the sky above the Lethal Chamber It was tiresome waiting in the square; I wandered from the Marble Arch to the artillery stables and back again to the lotos fountain The flowers and grass exhaled a fragrance which troubled me The jet of the fountain played in the moonlight and the musical splash of falling drops reminded me of the tinkle of chained mail in Hawberk's shop But it was not so fascinating and the dull sparkle of the moonlight on the water brought no such sensations of exquisite pleasure as when the sunshine played over the polished steel of a corselet on Hawberk's knee I watched the bats darting and turning above the water plants in the fountain basin but their rapid jerky flight set my nerves on edge and I went away again to walk aimlessly to and fro among the trees The artillery stables were dark but in the cavalry barracks the officers' windows were brilliantly lighted and the sallyport was constantly filled with troopers in fatigue carrying straw and harness and baskets filled with tin dishes Twice the mounted sentry at the gates was changed while I wandered up and down the asphalt walk I looked at my watch It was nearly time The lights in the barracks went out one by one the barred gate was closed and every minute or two an officer passed in through the side wicket leaving a rattle of accoutrements and a jingle of spurs on the night air The square had become very silent The last homeless loiterer had been driven away by the grey-coated park policeman the car tracks along Wooster Street were deserted and the only sound which broke the stillness was the stamping of the sentry's horse and the ring of his sabre against the saddle pommel In the barracks the officers' quarters were still lighted and military servants passed and repassed before the bay windows Twelve o'clock sounded from the new spire of St Francis Xavier and at the last stroke of the sad-toned bell a figure passed through the wicket beside the portcullis returned the salute of the sentry and crossing the street entered the square and advanced toward the Benedick apartment house Louis I called The man pivoted on his spurred heels and came straight toward me Is that you Hildred? Yes you are on time I took his offered hand and we strolled toward the Lethal Chamber He rattled on about his wedding and the graces of Constance and their future prospects calling my attention to his captain's shoulder-straps and the triple gold arabesque on his sleeve and fatigue cap I believe I listened as much to the music of his spurs and sabre as I did to his boyish babble and at last we stood under the elms on the Fourth Street corner of the square opposite the Lethal Chamber Then he laughed and asked me what I wanted with him I motioned him to a seat on a bench under the electric light and sat down beside him He looked at me curiously with that same searching glance which I hate and fear so in doctors I felt the insult of his look but he did not know it and I carefully concealed my feelings Well old chap he inquired what can I do for you? I drew from my pocket the manuscript and notes of the Imperial Dynasty of America and looking him in the eye said: I will tell you On your word as a soldier promise me to read this manuscript from beginning to end without asking me a question Promise me to read these notes in the same way and promise me to listen to what I have to tell later I promise if you wish it he said pleasantly Give me the paper Hildred He began to read raising his eyebrows with a puzzled whimsical air which made me tremble with suppressed anger As he advanced his eyebrows contracted and his lips seemed to form the word rubbish Then he looked slightly bored but apparently for my sake read with an attempt at interest which presently ceased to be an effort He started when in the closely written pages he came to his own name and when he came to mine he lowered the paper and looked sharply at me for a moment But he kept his word and resumed his reading and I let the half-formed question die on his lips unanswered When he came to the end and read the signature of Mr Wilde he folded the paper carefully and returned it to
adult	Dr Archer having by some means become possessed of the secret of the Imperial Succession attempted to deprive me of my right alleging that because of a fall from my horse four years ago I had become mentally deficient He presumed to place me under restraint in his own house in hopes of either driving me insane or poisoning me I have not forgotten it I visited him last night and the interview was final Louis turned quite pale but did not move I resumed triumphantly There are yet three people to be interviewed in the interests of Mr Wilde and myself They are my cousin Louis Mr Hawberk and his daughter Constance Louis sprang to his feet and I arose also and flung the paper marked with the Yellow Sign to the ground Oh I don't need that to tell you what I have to say I cried with a laugh of triumph You must renounce the crown to me do you hear to _me_ Louis looked at me with a startled air but recovering himself said kindly Of course I renounce the--what is it I must renounce? The crown I said angrily Of course he answered I renounce it Come old chap I'll walk back to your rooms with you Don't try any of your doctor's tricks on me I cried trembling with fury Don't act as if you think I am insane What nonsense he replied Come it's getting late Hildred No I shouted you must listen You cannot marry I forbid it Do you hear? I forbid it You shall renounce the crown and in reward I grant you exile but if you refuse you shall die He tried to calm me but I was roused at last and drawing my long knife barred his way Then I told him how they would find Dr Archer in the cellar with his throat open and I laughed in his face when I thought of Vance and his knife and the order signed by me Ah you are the King I cried but I shall be King Who are you to keep me from Empire over all the habitable earth! I was born the cousin of a king but I shall be King! Louis stood white and rigid before me Suddenly a man came running up Fourth Street entered the gate of the Lethal Temple traversed the path to the bronze doors at full speed and plunged into the death chamber with the cry of one demented and I laughed until I wept tears for I had recognized Vance and knew that Hawberk and his daughter were no longer in my way Go I cried to Louis you have ceased to be a menace You will never marry Constance now and if you marry any one else in your exile I will visit you as I did my doctor last night Mr Wilde takes charge of you to-morrow Then I turned and darted into South Fifth Avenue and with a cry of terror Louis dropped his belt and sabre and followed me like the wind I heard him close behind me at the corner of Bleecker Street and I dashed into the doorway under Hawberk's sign He cried Halt or I fire! but when he saw that I flew up the stairs leaving Hawberk's shop below he left me and I heard him hammering and shouting at their door as though it were possible to arouse the dead Mr Wilde's door was open and I entered crying It is done it is done! Let the nations rise and look upon their King! but I could not find Mr Wilde so I went to the cabinet and took the splendid diadem from its case Then I drew on the white silk robe embroidered with the Yellow Sign and placed the crown upon my head At last I was King King by my right in Hastur King because I knew the mystery of the Hyades and my mind had sounded the depths of the Lake of Hali I was King! The first grey pencillings of dawn would raise a tempest which would shake two hemispheres Then as I stood my every nerve pitched to the highest tension faint with the joy and splendour of my thought without in the dark passage a man groaned I seized the tallow dip and sprang to the door The cat passed me like a demon and the tallow dip went out but my long knife flew swifter than she and I heard her screech and I knew that my knife had found her For a moment I listened to her tumbling and thumping about in the darkness and then when her frenzy ceased I lighted a lamp and raised it over my head Mr Wilde lay on the floor with his throat torn open At first I thought he was dead but as I looked a green sparkle came into his sunken eyes his mutilated hand trembled and then a spasm stretched his mouth from ear to ear For a moment my terror and despair gave place to hope but as I bent over him his eyeballs rolled clean around in his head and he died Then while I stood transfixed with rage and despair seeing my crown my empire every hope and every ambition my very life lying prostrate there with the dead master _they_ came seized me from behind and bound me until my veins stood out like cords and my voice failed with the paroxysms of my frenzied screams But I still raged bleeding and infuriated among them and more than one policeman felt my sharp teeth Then when I could no longer move they came nearer; I saw old Hawberk and behind him my cousin Louis' ghastly face and farther away in the corner a woman Constance weeping softly Ah! I see it now! I shrieked You have seized the throne and the empire Woe! woe to you who are crowned with the crown of the King in
adult	_The King in Yellow Act I Scene 2_ I Although I knew nothing of chemistry I listened fascinated He picked up an Easter lily which Genevieve had brought that morning from Notre Dame and dropped it into the basin Instantly the liquid lost its crystalline clearness For a second the lily was enveloped in a milk-white foam which disappeared leaving the fluid opalescent Changing tints of orange and crimson played over the surface and then what seemed to be a ray of pure sunlight struck through from the bottom where the lily was resting At the same instant he plunged his hand into the basin and drew out the flower There is no danger he explained if you choose the right moment That golden ray is the signal He held the lily toward me and I took it in my hand It had turned to stone to the purest marble You see he said it is without a flaw What sculptor could reproduce it? The marble was white as snow but in its depths the veins of the lily were tinged with palest azure and a faint flush lingered deep in its heart Don't ask me the reason of that he smiled noticing my wonder I have no idea why the veins and heart are tinted but they always are Yesterday I tried one of Genevieve's gold-fish --there it is The fish looked as if sculptured in marble But if you held it to the light the stone was beautifully veined with a faint blue and from somewhere within came a rosy light like the tint which slumbers in an opal I looked into the basin Once more it seemed filled with clearest crystal If I should touch it now? I demanded I don't know he replied but you had better not try There is one thing I'm curious about I said and that is where the ray of sunlight came from It looked like a sunbeam true enough he said I don't know it always comes when I immerse any living thing Perhaps he continued smiling perhaps it is the vital spark of the creature escaping to the source from whence it came I saw he was mocking and threatened him with a mahl-stick but he only laughed and changed the subject Stay to lunch Genevieve will be here directly I saw her going to early mass I said and she looked as fresh and sweet as that lily--before you destroyed it Do you think I destroyed it? said Boris gravely Destroyed preserved how can we tell? We sat in the corner of a studio near his unfinished group of the Fates He leaned back on the sofa twirling a sculptor's chisel and squinting at his work By the way he said I have finished pointing up that old academic Ariadne and I suppose it will have to go to the Salon It's all I have ready this year but after the success the 'Madonna' brought me I feel ashamed to send a thing like that The Madonna an exquisite marble for which Genevieve had sat had been the sensation of last year's Salon I looked at the Ariadne It was a magnificent piece of technical work but I agreed with Boris that the world would expect something better of him than that Still it was impossible now to think of finishing in time for the Salon that splendid terrible group half shrouded in the marble behind me The Fates would have to wait We were proud of Boris Yvain We claimed him and he claimed us on the strength of his having been born in America although his father was French and his mother was a Russian Every one in the Beaux Arts called him Boris And yet there were only two of us whom he addressed in the same familiar way--Jack Scott and myself Perhaps my being in love with Genevieve had something to do with his affection for me Not that it had ever been acknowledged between us But after all was settled and she had told me with tears in her eyes that it was Boris whom she loved I went over to his house and congratulated him The perfect cordiality of that interview did not deceive either of us I always believed although to one at least it was a great comfort I do not think he and Genevieve ever spoke of the matter together but Boris knew Genevieve was lovely The Madonna-like purity of her face might have been inspired by the Sanctus in Gounod's Mass But I was always glad when she changed that mood for what we called her April Manoeuvres She was often as variable as an April day In the morning grave dignified and sweet at noon laughing capricious at evening whatever one least expected I preferred her so rather than in that Madonna-like tranquillity which stirred the depths of my heart I was dreaming of Genevieve when he spoke again
adult	duplicate of the object in stone This I confess had never interested me greatly and as for the ancient fossils thus produced they disgusted me Boris it appeared feeling curiosity instead of repugnance had investigated the subject and had accidentally stumbled on a solution which attacking the immersed object with a ferocity unheard of in a second did the work of years This was all I could make out of the strange story he had just been telling me He spoke again after a long silence I am almost frightened when I think what I have found Scientists would go mad over the discovery It was so simple too; it discovered itself When I think of that formula and that new element precipitated in metallic scales-- What new element? Oh I haven't thought of naming it and I don't believe I ever shall There are enough precious metals now in the world to cut throats over I pricked up my ears Have you struck gold Boris? No better;--but see here Alec! he laughed starting up You and I have all we need in this world Ah! how sinister and covetous you look already! I laughed too and told him I was devoured by the desire for gold and we had better talk of something else; so when Genevieve came in shortly after we had turned our backs on alchemy Genevieve was dressed in silvery grey from head to foot The light glinted along the soft curves of her fair hair as she turned her cheek to Boris; then she saw me and returned my greeting She had never before failed to blow me a kiss from the tips of her white fingers and I promptly complained of the omission She smiled and held out her hand which dropped almost before it had touched mine; then she said looking at Boris-- You must ask Alec to stay for luncheon This also was something new She had always asked me herself until to-day I did said Boris shortly And you said yes I hope? She turned to me with a charming conventional smile I might have been an acquaintance of the day before yesterday I made her a low bow J'avais bien l'honneur madame but refusing to take up our usual bantering tone she murmured a hospitable commonplace and disappeared Boris and I looked at one another I had better go home don't you think? I asked Hanged if I know he replied frankly While we were discussing the advisability of my departure Genevieve reappeared in the doorway without her bonnet She was wonderfully beautiful but her colour was too deep and her lovely eyes were too bright She came straight up to me and took my arm Luncheon is ready Was I cross Alec? I thought I had a headache but I haven't Come here Boris; and she slipped her other arm through his Alec knows that after you there is no one in the world whom I like as well as I like him so if he sometimes feels snubbed it won't hurt him A la bonheur! I cried who says there are no thunderstorms in April? Are you ready? chanted Boris Aye ready; and arm-in-arm we raced into the dining-room scandalizing the servants After all we were not so much to blame; Genevieve was eighteen Boris was twenty-three and I not quite twenty-one II Some work that I was doing about this time on the decorations for Genevieve's boudoir kept me constantly at the quaint little hotel in the Rue Sainte-Cecile Boris and I in those days laboured hard but as we pleased which was fitfully and we all three with Jack Scott idled a great deal together One quiet afternoon I had been wandering alone over the house examining curios prying into odd corners bringing out sweetmeats and cigars from strange hiding-places and at last I stopped in the bathing-room Boris all over clay stood there washing his hands The room was built of rose-coloured marble excepting the floor which was tessellated in rose and grey In the centre was a square pool sunken below the surface of the floor; steps led down into it sculptured pillars supported a frescoed ceiling A delicious marble Cupid appeared to have just alighted on his pedestal at the upper end of the room The whole interior was Boris' work and mine Boris in his working-clothes of white canvas scraped the traces of clay and red modelling wax from his handsome hands and coquetted over his shoulder with the Cupid I see you he insisted don't try to look the other way and pretend not to see me You know who made you little humbug! It was always my role to interpret Cupid's sentiments in these conversations and when my turn came I responded in such a manner that Boris seized my arm and dragged me toward the pool declaring he would duck me Next instant he dropped my arm and turned pale Good God! he said I forgot the pool is full of the solution!
adult	He put down his glass and walked towards the staircase door Again I remarked his lameness and the soft padding sound of his footfall and standing up in my place I saw his feet as he went out He had nothing on them but a pair of tattered blood-stained socks Then the door closed upon him I had half a mind to follow till I remembered how he detested any fuss about himself For a minute perhaps my mind was wool-gathering Then 'Remarkable Behaviour of an Eminent Scientist ' I heard the Editor say thinking (after his wont) in headlines And this brought my attention back to the bright dinner-table 'What's the game?' said the Journalist 'Has he been doing the Amateur Cadger? I don't follow ' I met the eye of the Psychologist and read my own interpretation in his face I thought of the Time Traveller limping painfully upstairs I don't think any one else had noticed his lameness The first to recover completely from this surprise was the Medical Man who rang the bell--the Time Traveller hated to have servants waiting at dinner--for a hot plate At that the Editor turned to his knife and fork with a grunt and the Silent Man followed suit The dinner was resumed Conversation was exclamatory for a little while with gaps of wonderment; and then the Editor got fervent in his curiosity 'Does our friend eke out his modest income with a crossing? or has he his Nebuchadnezzar phases?' he inquired 'I feel assured it's this business of the Time Machine ' I said and took up the Psychologist's account of our previous meeting The new guests were frankly incredulous The Editor raised objections 'What _was_ this time travelling? A man couldn't cover himself with dust by rolling in a paradox could he?' And then as the idea came home to him he resorted to caricature Hadn't they any clothes-brushes in the Future? The Journalist too would not believe at any price and joined the Editor in the easy work of heaping ridicule on the whole thing They were both the new kind of journalist--very joyous irreverent young men 'Our Special Correspondent in the Day after To-morrow reports ' the Journalist was saying--or rather shouting--when the Time Traveller came back He was dressed in ordinary evening clothes and nothing save his haggard look remained of the change that had startled me 'I say ' said the Editor hilariously 'these chaps here say you have been travelling into the middle of next week! Tell us all about little Rosebery will you? What will you take for the lot?' The Time Traveller came to the place reserved for him without a word He smiled quietly in his old way 'Where's my mutton?' he said 'What a treat it is to stick a fork into meat again!' 'Story!' cried the Editor 'Story be damned!' said the Time Traveller 'I want something to eat I won't say a word until I get some peptone into my arteries Thanks And the salt ' 'One word ' said I 'Have you been time travelling?' 'Yes ' said the Time Traveller with his mouth full nodding his head 'I'd give a shilling a line for a verbatim note ' said the Editor The Time Traveller pushed his glass towards the Silent Man and rang it with his fingernail; at which the Silent Man who had been staring at his face started convulsively and poured him wine The rest of the dinner was uncomfortable For my own part sudden questions kept on rising to my lips and I dare say it was the same with the others The Journalist tried to relieve the tension by telling anecdotes of Hettie Potter The Time Traveller devoted his attention to his dinner and displayed the appetite of a tramp The Medical Man smoked a cigarette and watched the Time Traveller through his eyelashes The Silent Man seemed even more clumsy than usual and drank champagne with regularity and determination out of sheer nervousness At last the Time Traveller pushed his plate away and looked round us 'I suppose I must apologize ' he said 'I was simply starving I've had a most amazing time ' He reached out his hand for a cigar and cut the end 'But come into the smoking-room It's too long a story to tell over greasy plates ' And ringing the bell in passing he led the way into the adjoining room 'You have told Blank and Dash and Chose about the machine?' he said to me leaning back in his easy-chair and naming the three new guests 'But the thing's a mere paradox ' said the Editor 'I can't argue to-night I don't mind telling you the story but I can't argue I will ' he went on 'tell you the story of what has happened to me if you like but you must refrain from interruptions I want to tell it Badly Most of it will sound like lying So be it! It's true--every word of it all the same I was in my laboratory at four o'clock and since then I've lived eight days such days as no human being ever lived before! I'm nearly worn out but I shan't sleep till I've told this thing over to you Then I shall go to bed But no interruptions! Is it agreed?' 'Agreed ' said the Editor and the rest of us echoed 'Agreed ' And with that the Time Traveller began his story as I have set it forth He sat back in his chair at first and spoke like a weary man Afterwards he got more animated In writing it down I feel with only too much keenness the inadequacy of pen and ink--and above all my own inadequacy--to express its quality You read I will suppose
adult	nickel bars was exactly one inch too short and this I had to get remade; so that the thing was not complete until this morning It was at ten o'clock to-day that the first of all Time Machines began its career I gave it a last tap tried all the screws again put one more drop of oil on the quartz rod and sat myself in the saddle I suppose a suicide who holds a pistol to his skull feels much the same wonder at what will come next as I felt then I took the starting lever in one hand and the stopping one in the other pressed the first and almost immediately the second I seemed to reel; I felt a nightmare sensation of falling; and looking round I saw the laboratory exactly as before Had anything happened? For a moment I suspected that my intellect had tricked me Then I noted the clock A moment before as it seemed it had stood at a minute or so past ten; now it was nearly half-past three! 'I drew a breath set my teeth gripped the starting lever with both hands and went off with a thud The laboratory got hazy and went dark Mrs Watchett came in and walked apparently without seeing me towards the garden door I suppose it took her a minute or so to traverse the place but to me she seemed to shoot across the room like a rocket I pressed the lever over to its extreme position The night came like the turning out of a lamp and in another moment came to-morrow The laboratory grew faint and hazy then fainter and ever fainter To-morrow night came black then day again night again day again faster and faster still An eddying murmur filled my ears and a strange dumb confusedness descended on my mind 'I am afraid I cannot convey the peculiar sensations of time travelling They are excessively unpleasant There is a feeling exactly like that one has upon a switchback--of a helpless headlong motion! I felt the same horrible anticipation too of an imminent smash As I put on pace night followed day like the flapping of a black wing The dim suggestion of the laboratory seemed presently to fall away from me and I saw the sun hopping swiftly across the sky leaping it every minute and every minute marking a day I supposed the laboratory had been destroyed and I had come into the open air I had a dim impression of scaffolding but I was already going too fast to be conscious of any moving things The slowest snail that ever crawled dashed by too fast for me The twinkling succession of darkness and light was excessively painful to the eye Then in the intermittent darknesses I saw the moon spinning swiftly through her quarters from new to full and had a faint glimpse of the circling stars Presently as I went on still gaining velocity the palpitation of night and day merged into one continuous greyness; the sky took on a wonderful deepness of blue a splendid luminous color like that of early twilight; the jerking sun became a streak of fire a brilliant arch in space; the moon a fainter fluctuating band; and I could see nothing of the stars save now and then a brighter circle flickering in the blue 'The landscape was misty and vague I was still on the hill-side upon which this house now stands and the shoulder rose above me grey and dim I saw trees growing and changing like puffs of vapour now brown now green; they grew spread shivered and passed away I saw huge buildings rise up faint and fair and pass like dreams The whole surface of the earth seemed changed--melting and flowing under my eyes The little hands upon the dials that registered my speed raced round faster and faster Presently I noted that the sun belt swayed up and down from solstice to solstice in a minute or less and that consequently my pace was over a year a minute; and minute by minute the white snow flashed across the world and vanished and was followed by the bright brief green of spring 'The unpleasant sensations of the start were less poignant now They merged at last into a kind of hysterical exhilaration I remarked indeed a clumsy swaying of the machine for which I was unable to account But my mind was too confused to attend to it so with a kind of madness growing upon me I flung myself into futurity At first I scarce thought of stopping scarce thought of anything but these new sensations But presently a fresh series of impressions grew up in my mind--a certain curiosity and therewith a certain dread--until at last they took complete possession of me What strange developments of humanity what wonderful advances upon our rudimentary civilization I thought might not appear when I came to look nearly into the dim elusive world that raced and fluctuated before my eyes! I saw great and splendid architecture rising about me more massive than any buildings of our own time and yet as it seemed built of glimmer and mist I saw a richer green flow up the hill-side and remain there without any wintry intermission Even through the veil of my confusion the earth seemed very fair And so my mind came round to the business of stopping 'The peculiar risk lay in the possibility of my finding some substance in the space which I or the machine occupied So long as I travelled at a high velocity through time this scarcely mattered; I was so to speak attenuated--was slipping like a vapour through the interstices of intervening substances! But to come to a stop involved the jamming of myself molecule by molecule into whatever lay in my way; meant bringing my atoms into such intimate contact with those of the obstacle that a profound chemical reaction--possibly a far-reaching explosion--would result and blow myself and my apparatus out of all possible dimensions--into the Unknown This possibility had occurred to me again and again while I was making the machine; but then I had cheerfully accepted it as an unavoidable risk--one of the risks a man has got to take! Now the risk was inevitable I no longer saw it in the same cheerful light The fact is that insensibly the absolute strangeness of everything the sickly jarring and swaying of the machine above all the feeling of prolonged falling had absolutely upset my nerve I told myself that I could never stop and with a gust of petulance I
adult	'My sensations would be hard to describe As the columns of hail grew thinner I saw the white figure more distinctly It was very large for a silver birch-tree touched its shoulder It was of white marble in shape something like a winged sphinx but the wings instead of being carried vertically at the sides were spread so that it seemed to hover The pedestal it appeared to me was of bronze and was thick with verdigris It chanced that the face was towards me; the sightless eyes seemed to watch me; there was the faint shadow of a smile on the lips It was greatly weather-worn and that imparted an unpleasant suggestion of disease I stood looking at it for a little space--half a minute perhaps or half an hour It seemed to advance and to recede as the hail drove before it denser or thinner At last I tore my eyes from it for a moment and saw that the hail curtain had worn threadbare and that the sky was lightening with the promise of the sun 'I looked up again at the crouching white shape and the full temerity of my voyage came suddenly upon me What might appear when that hazy curtain was altogether withdrawn? What might not have happened to men? What if cruelty had grown into a common passion? What if in this interval the race had lost its manliness and had developed into something inhuman unsympathetic and overwhelmingly powerful? I might seem some old-world savage animal only the more dreadful and disgusting for our common likeness--a foul creature to be incontinently slain 'Already I saw other vast shapes--huge buildings with intricate parapets and tall columns with a wooded hill-side dimly creeping in upon me through the lessening storm I was seized with a panic fear I turned frantically to the Time Machine and strove hard to readjust it As I did so the shafts of the sun smote through the thunderstorm The grey downpour was swept aside and vanished like the trailing garments of a ghost Above me in the intense blue of the summer sky some faint brown shreds of cloud whirled into nothingness The great buildings about me stood out clear and distinct shining with the wet of the thunderstorm and picked out in white by the unmelted hailstones piled along their courses I felt naked in a strange world I felt as perhaps a bird may feel in the clear air knowing the hawk wings above and will swoop My fear grew to frenzy I took a breathing space set my teeth and again grappled fiercely wrist and knee with the machine It gave under my desperate onset and turned over It struck my chin violently One hand on the saddle the other on the lever I stood panting heavily in attitude to mount again 'But with this recovery of a prompt retreat my courage recovered I looked more curiously and less fearfully at this world of the remote future In a circular opening high up in the wall of the nearer house I saw a group of figures clad in rich soft robes They had seen me and their faces were directed towards me 'Then I heard voices approaching me Coming through the bushes by the White Sphinx were the heads and shoulders of men running One of these emerged in a pathway leading straight to the little lawn upon which I stood with my machine He was a slight creature--perhaps four feet high--clad in a purple tunic girdled at the waist with a leather belt Sandals or buskins--I could not clearly distinguish which--were on his feet; his legs were bare to the knees and his head was bare Noticing that I noticed for the first time how warm the air was 'He struck me as being a very beautiful and graceful creature but indescribably frail His flushed face reminded me of the more beautiful kind of consumptive--that hectic beauty of which we used to hear so much At the sight of him I suddenly regained confidence I took my hands from the machine IV 'In another moment we were standing face to face I and this fragile thing out of futurity He came straight up to me and laughed into my eyes The absence from his bearing of any sign of fear struck me at once Then he turned to the two others who were following him and spoke to them in a strange and very sweet and liquid tongue 'There were others coming and presently a little group of perhaps eight or ten of these exquisite creatures were about me One of them addressed me It came into my head oddly enough that my voice was too harsh and deep for them So I shook my head and pointing to my ears shook it again He came a step forward hesitated and then touched my hand Then I felt other soft little tentacles upon my back and shoulders They wanted to make sure I was real There was nothing in this at all alarming Indeed there was something in these pretty little people that inspired confidence--a graceful gentleness a certain childlike ease And besides they looked so frail that I could fancy myself flinging the whole dozen of them about like nine-pins But I made a sudden motion to warn them when I saw their little pink hands feeling at the Time Machine Happily then when it was not too late I thought of a danger I had hitherto forgotten and reaching over the bars of the machine I unscrewed the little levers that would set it in motion and put these in my pocket Then I turned again to see what I could do in the way of communication 'And then looking more nearly into their features I saw some further peculiarities in their Dresden-china type of prettiness
adult	knowledge art everything Then one of them suddenly asked me a question that showed him to be on the intellectual level of one of our five-year-old children--asked me in fact if I had come from the sun in a thunderstorm! It let loose the judgment I had suspended upon their clothes their frail light limbs and fragile features A flow of disappointment rushed across my mind For a moment I felt that I had built the Time Machine in vain 'I nodded pointed to the sun and gave them such a vivid rendering of a thunderclap as startled them They all withdrew a pace or so and bowed Then came one laughing towards me carrying a chain of beautiful flowers altogether new to me and put it about my neck The idea was received with melodious applause; and presently they were all running to and fro for flowers and laughingly flinging them upon me until I was almost smothered with blossom You who have never seen the like can scarcely imagine what delicate and wonderful flowers countless years of culture had created Then someone suggested that their plaything should be exhibited in the nearest building and so I was led past the sphinx of white marble which had seemed to watch me all the while with a smile at my astonishment towards a vast grey edifice of fretted stone As I went with them the memory of my confident anticipations of a profoundly grave and intellectual posterity came with irresistible merriment to my mind 'The building had a huge entry and was altogether of colossal dimensions I was naturally most occupied with the growing crowd of little people and with the big open portals that yawned before me shadowy and mysterious My general impression of the world I saw over their heads was a tangled waste of beautiful bushes and flowers a long neglected and yet weedless garden I saw a number of tall spikes of strange white flowers measuring a foot perhaps across the spread of the waxen petals They grew scattered as if wild among the variegated shrubs but as I say I did not examine them closely at this time The Time Machine was left deserted on the turf among the rhododendrons 'The arch of the doorway was richly carved but naturally I did not observe the carving very narrowly though I fancied I saw suggestions of old Phoenician decorations as I passed through and it struck me that they were very badly broken and weather-worn Several more brightly clad people met me in the doorway and so we entered I dressed in dingy nineteenth-century garments looking grotesque enough garlanded with flowers and surrounded by an eddying mass of bright soft-colored robes and shining white limbs in a melodious whirl of laughter and laughing speech 'The big doorway opened into a proportionately great hall hung with brown The roof was in shadow and the windows partially glazed with coloured glass and partially unglazed admitted a tempered light The floor was made up of huge blocks of some very hard white metal not plates nor slabs--blocks and it was so much worn as I judged by the going to and fro of past generations as to be deeply channelled along the more frequented ways Transverse to the length were innumerable tables made of slabs of polished stone raised perhaps a foot from the floor and upon these were heaps of fruits Some I recognized as a kind of hypertrophied raspberry and orange but for the most part they were strange 'Between the tables was scattered a great number of cushions Upon these my conductors seated themselves signing for me to do likewise With a pretty absence of ceremony they began to eat the fruit with their hands flinging peel and stalks and so forth into the round openings in the sides of the tables I was not loath to follow their example for I felt thirsty and hungry As I did so I surveyed the hall at my leisure 'And perhaps the thing that struck me most was its dilapidated look The stained-glass windows which displayed only a geometrical pattern were broken in many places and the curtains that hung across the lower end were thick with dust And it caught my eye that the corner of the marble table near me was fractured Nevertheless the general effect was extremely rich and picturesque There were perhaps a couple of hundred people dining in the hall and most of them seated as near to me as they could come were watching me with interest their little eyes shining over the fruit they were eating All were clad in the same soft and yet strong silky material 'Fruit by the by was all their diet These people of the remote future were strict vegetarians and while I was with them in spite of some carnal cravings I had to be frugivorous also Indeed I found afterwards that horses cattle sheep dogs had followed the Ichthyosaurus into extinction But the fruits were very delightful; one in particular that seemed to be in season all the time I was there--a floury thing in a three-sided husk--was especially good and I made it my staple At first I was puzzled by all these strange fruits and by the strange flowers I saw but later I began to perceive their import 'However I am telling you of my fruit dinner in the distant future now So soon as my appetite was a little checked I determined to make a resolute attempt to learn the speech of these new men of mine Clearly that was the next thing to do The fruits seemed a convenient thing to begin upon and holding one of these up I began a series of interrogative sounds and gestures I had some considerable difficulty in conveying my meaning At first my efforts met with a stare of surprise or inextinguishable laughter but presently a fair-haired little creature seemed to grasp my intention and repeated a name They had to chatter and explain the business at great length to each other and my first attempts to make the
adult	laugh about me and having smiled and gesticulated in a friendly way leave me again to my own devices 'The calm of evening was upon the world as I emerged from the great hall and the scene was lit by the warm glow of the setting sun At first things were very confusing Everything was so entirely different from the world I had known--even the flowers The big building I had left was situated on the slope of a broad river valley but the Thames had shifted perhaps a mile from its present position I resolved to mount to the summit of a crest perhaps a mile and a half away from which I could get a wider view of this our planet in the year Eight Hundred and Two Thousand Seven Hundred and One A D For that I should explain was the date the little dials of my machine recorded 'As I walked I was watching for every impression that could possibly help to explain the condition of ruinous splendour in which I found the world--for ruinous it was A little way up the hill for instance was a great heap of granite bound together by masses of aluminium a vast labyrinth of precipitous walls and crumpled heaps amidst which were thick heaps of very beautiful pagoda-like plants--nettles possibly--but wonderfully tinted with brown about the leaves and incapable of stinging It was evidently the derelict remains of some vast structure to what end built I could not determine It was here that I was destined at a later date to have a very strange experience--the first intimation of a still stranger discovery--but of that I will speak in its proper place 'Looking round with a sudden thought from a terrace on which I rested for a while I realized that there were no small houses to be seen Apparently the single house and possibly even the household had vanished Here and there among the greenery were palace-like buildings but the house and the cottage which form such characteristic features of our own English landscape had disappeared ' Communism said I to myself 'And on the heels of that came another thought I looked at the half-dozen little figures that were following me Then in a flash I perceived that all had the same form of costume the same soft hairless visage and the same girlish rotundity of limb It may seem strange perhaps that I had not noticed this before But everything was so strange Now I saw the fact plainly enough In costume and in all the differences of texture and bearing that now mark off the sexes from each other these people of the future were alike And the children seemed to my eyes to be but the miniatures of their parents I judged then that the children of that time were extremely precocious physically at least and I found afterwards abundant verification of my opinion 'Seeing the ease and security in which these people were living I felt that this close resemblance of the sexes was after all what one would expect; for the strength of a man and the softness of a woman the institution of the family and the differentiation of occupations are mere militant necessities of an age of physical force; where population is balanced and abundant much childbearing becomes an evil rather than a blessing to the State; where violence comes but rarely and off-spring are secure there is less necessity--indeed there is no necessity--for an efficient family and the specialization of the sexes with reference to their children's needs disappears We see some beginnings of this even in our own time and in this future age it was complete This I must remind you was my speculation at the time Later I was to appreciate how far it fell short of the reality 'While I was musing upon these things my attention was attracted by a pretty little structure like a well under a cupola I thought in a transitory way of the oddness of wells still existing and then resumed the thread of my speculations There were no large buildings towards the top of the hill and as my walking powers were evidently miraculous I was presently left alone for the first time With a strange sense of freedom and adventure I pushed on up to the crest 'There I found a seat of some yellow metal that I did not recognize corroded in places with a kind of pinkish rust and half smothered in soft moss the arm-rests cast and filed into the resemblance of griffins' heads I sat down on it and I surveyed the broad view of our old world under the sunset of that long day It was as sweet and fair a view as I have ever seen The sun had already gone below the horizon and the west was flaming gold touched with some horizontal bars of purple and crimson Below was the valley of the Thames in which the river lay like a band of burnished steel I have already spoken of the great palaces dotted about among the variegated greenery some in ruins and some still occupied Here and there rose a white or silvery figure in the waste garden of the earth here and there came the sharp vertical line of some cupola or obelisk There were no hedges no signs of proprietary rights no evidences of agriculture; the whole earth had become a garden 'So watching I began to put my interpretation upon the things I had seen and as it shaped itself to me that evening my interpretation was something in this way (Afterwards I found I had got only a half-truth--or only a glimpse of one facet of the truth ) 'It seemed to me that I had happened upon humanity upon the wane The ruddy sunset set me thinking of the sunset of mankind For the first time I began to realize an odd consequence of the social effort in which we are at present engaged And yet come to think it is a logical consequence enough Strength is the outcome of need;
adult	current in spite of the eddies The whole world will be intelligent educated and co-operating; things will move faster and faster towards the subjugation of Nature In the end wisely and carefully we shall readjust the balance of animal and vegetable life to suit our human needs 'This adjustment I say must have been done and done well; done indeed for all Time in the space of Time across which my machine had leaped The air was free from gnats the earth from weeds or fungi; everywhere were fruits and sweet and delightful flowers; brilliant butterflies flew hither and thither The ideal of preventive medicine was attained Diseases had been stamped out I saw no evidence of any contagious diseases during all my stay And I shall have to tell you later that even the processes of putrefaction and decay had been profoundly affected by these changes 'Social triumphs too had been effected I saw mankind housed in splendid shelters gloriously clothed and as yet I had found them engaged in no toil There were no signs of struggle neither social nor economical struggle The shop the advertisement traffic all that commerce which constitutes the body of our world was gone It was natural on that golden evening that I should jump at the idea of a social paradise The difficulty of increasing population had been met I guessed and population had ceased to increase 'But with this change in condition comes inevitably adaptations to the change What unless biological science is a mass of errors is the cause of human intelligence and vigour? Hardship and freedom: conditions under which the active strong and subtle survive and the weaker go to the wall; conditions that put a premium upon the loyal alliance of capable men upon self-restraint patience and decision And the institution of the family and the emotions that arise therein the fierce jealousy the tenderness for offspring parental self-devotion all found their justification and support in the imminent dangers of the young _Now_ where are these imminent dangers? There is a sentiment arising and it will grow against connubial jealousy against fierce maternity against passion of all sorts; unnecessary things now and things that make us uncomfortable savage survivals discords in a refined and pleasant life 'I thought of the physical slightness of the people their lack of intelligence and those big abundant ruins and it strengthened my belief in a perfect conquest of Nature For after the battle comes Quiet Humanity had been strong energetic and intelligent and had used all its abundant vitality to alter the conditions under which it lived And now came the reaction of the altered conditions 'Under the new conditions of perfect comfort and security that restless energy that with us is strength would become weakness Even in our own time certain tendencies and desires once necessary to survival are a constant source of failure Physical courage and the love of battle for instance are no great help--may even be hindrances--to a civilized man And in a state of physical balance and security power intellectual as well as physical would be out of place For countless years I judged there had been no danger of war or solitary violence no danger from wild beasts no wasting disease to require strength of constitution no need of toil For such a life what we should call the weak are as well equipped as the strong are indeed no longer weak Better equipped indeed they are for the strong would be fretted by an energy for which there was no outlet No doubt the exquisite beauty of the buildings I saw was the outcome of the last surgings of the now purposeless energy of mankind before it settled down into perfect harmony with the conditions under which it lived--the flourish of that triumph which began the last great peace This has ever been the fate of energy in security; it takes to art and to eroticism and then come languor and decay 'Even this artistic impetus would at last die away--had almost died in the Time I saw To adorn themselves with flowers to dance to sing in the sunlight: so much was left of the artistic spirit and no more Even that would fade in the end into a contented inactivity We are kept keen on the grindstone of pain and necessity and it seemed to me that here was that hateful grindstone broken at last! 'As I stood there in the gathering dark I thought that in this simple explanation I had mastered the problem of the world--mastered the whole secret of these delicious people Possibly the checks they had devised for the increase of population had succeeded too well and their numbers had rather diminished than kept stationary That would account for the abandoned ruins Very simple was my explanation and plausible enough--as most wrong theories are! V 'As I stood there musing over this too perfect triumph of man the full moon yellow and gibbous came up out of an overflow of silver light in the north-east The bright little figures ceased to move about below a noiseless owl flitted by and I shivered with the chill of the night I determined to descend and find where I could sleep 'I looked for the building I knew Then my eye travelled along to the figure of the White Sphinx upon the pedestal of bronze growing distinct as the light of the rising moon grew brighter I could see
adult	machine was removed out of my reach My breath came with pain I suppose I covered the whole distance from the hill crest to the little lawn two miles perhaps in ten minutes And I am not a young man I cursed aloud as I ran at my confident folly in leaving the machine wasting good breath thereby I cried aloud and none answered Not a creature seemed to be stirring in that moonlit world 'When I reached the lawn my worst fears were realized Not a trace of the thing was to be seen I felt faint and cold when I faced the empty space among the black tangle of bushes I ran round it furiously as if the thing might be hidden in a corner and then stopped abruptly with my hands clutching my hair Above me towered the sphinx upon the bronze pedestal white shining leprous in the light of the rising moon It seemed to smile in mockery of my dismay 'I might have consoled myself by imagining the little people had put the mechanism in some shelter for me had I not felt assured of their physical and intellectual inadequacy That is what dismayed me: the sense of some hitherto unsuspected power through whose intervention my invention had vanished Yet for one thing I felt assured: unless some other age had produced its exact duplicate the machine could not have moved in time The attachment of the levers--I will show you the method later--prevented any one from tampering with it in that way when they were removed It had moved and was hid only in space But then where could it be? 'I think I must have had a kind of frenzy I remember running violently in and out among the moonlit bushes all round the sphinx and startling some white animal that in the dim light I took for a small deer I remember too late that night beating the bushes with my clenched fist until my knuckles were gashed and bleeding from the broken twigs Then sobbing and raving in my anguish of mind I went down to the great building of stone The big hall was dark silent and deserted I slipped on the uneven floor and fell over one of the malachite tables almost breaking my shin I lit a match and went on past the dusty curtains of which I have told you 'There I found a second great hall covered with cushions upon which perhaps a score or so of the little people were sleeping I have no doubt they found my second appearance strange enough coming suddenly out of the quiet darkness with inarticulate noises and the splutter and flare of a match For they had forgotten about matches Where is my Time Machine? I began bawling like an angry child laying hands upon them and shaking them up together It must have been very queer to them Some laughed most of them looked sorely frightened When I saw them standing round me it came into my head that I was doing as foolish a thing as it was possible for me to do under the circumstances in trying to revive the sensation of fear For reasoning from their daylight behaviour I thought that fear must be forgotten 'Abruptly I dashed down the match and knocking one of the people over in my course went blundering across the big dining-hall again out under the moonlight I heard cries of terror and their little feet running and stumbling this way and that I do not remember all I did as the moon crept up the sky I suppose it was the unexpected nature of my loss that maddened me I felt hopelessly cut off from my own kind--a strange animal in an unknown world I must have raved to and fro screaming and crying upon God and Fate I have a memory of horrible fatigue as the long night of despair wore away; of looking in this impossible place and that; of groping among moon-lit ruins and touching strange creatures in the black shadows; at last of lying on the ground near the sphinx and weeping with absolute wretchedness I had nothing left but misery Then I slept and when I woke again it was full day and a couple of sparrows were hopping round me on the turf within reach of my arm 'I sat up in the freshness of the morning trying to remember how I had got there and why I had such a profound sense of desertion and despair Then things came clear in my mind With the plain reasonable daylight I could look my circumstances fairly in the face I saw the wild folly of my frenzy overnight and I could reason with myself Suppose the worst? I said Suppose the machine altogether lost--perhaps destroyed? It behoves me to be calm and patient to learn the way of the people to get a clear idea of the method of my loss and the means of getting materials and tools; so that in the end perhaps I may make another That would be my only hope perhaps but better than despair And after all it was a beautiful and curious world 'But probably the machine had only been taken away Still I must be calm and patient find its hiding-place and recover it by force or cunning And with that I scrambled to my feet and looked about me wondering where I could bathe I felt weary stiff and travel-soiled The freshness of the morning made me desire an equal freshness I had exhausted my emotion Indeed as I went about my business I found myself wondering at my intense excitement overnight I made a careful examination of the ground about the little lawn I wasted some time in futile questionings conveyed as well as I was able to such of the little people as came by They all failed to understand my gestures; some were simply stolid some thought it was a jest and laughed at me I had the hardest task in the world to keep my hands off their pretty laughing faces It was a foolish impulse but the devil begotten of fear and blind anger was ill curbed and still eager to take advantage of my perplexity The turf gave better counsel I found a groove ripped in it about midway between the pedestal of the sphinx and the marks of my feet where on arrival I had struggled with the overturned machine
adult	with exactly the same result Somehow his manner made me feel ashamed of myself But as you know I wanted the Time Machine and I tried him once more As he turned off like the others my temper got the better of me In three strides I was after him had him by the loose part of his robe round the neck and began dragging him towards the sphinx Then I saw the horror and repugnance of his face and all of a sudden I let him go 'But I was not beaten yet I banged with my fist at the bronze panels I thought I heard something stir inside--to be explicit I thought I heard a sound like a chuckle--but I must have been mistaken Then I got a big pebble from the river and came and hammered till I had flattened a coil in the decorations and the verdigris came off in powdery flakes The delicate little people must have heard me hammering in gusty outbreaks a mile away on either hand but nothing came of it I saw a crowd of them upon the slopes looking furtively at me At last hot and tired I sat down to watch the place But I was too restless to watch long; I am too Occidental for a long vigil I could work at a problem for years but to wait inactive for twenty-four hours--that is another matter 'I got up after a time and began walking aimlessly through the bushes towards the hill again Patience said I to myself If you want your machine again you must leave that sphinx alone If they mean to take your machine away it's little good your wrecking their bronze panels and if they don't you will get it back as soon as you can ask for it To sit among all those unknown things before a puzzle like that is hopeless That way lies monomania Face this world Learn its ways watch it be careful of too hasty guesses at its meaning In the end you will find clues to it all Then suddenly the humour of the situation came into my mind: the thought of the years I had spent in study and toil to get into the future age and now my passion of anxiety to get out of it I had made myself the most complicated and the most hopeless trap that ever a man devised Although it was at my own expense I could not help myself I laughed aloud 'Going through the big palace it seemed to me that the little people avoided me It may have been my fancy or it may have had something to do with my hammering at the gates of bronze Yet I felt tolerably sure of the avoidance I was careful however to show no concern and to abstain from any pursuit of them and in the course of a day or two things got back to the old footing I made what progress I could in the language and in addition I pushed my explorations here and there Either I missed some subtle point or their language was excessively simple--almost exclusively composed of concrete substantives and verbs There seemed to be few if any abstract terms or little use of figurative language Their sentences were usually simple and of two words and I failed to convey or understand any but the simplest propositions I determined to put the thought of my Time Machine and the mystery of the bronze doors under the sphinx as much as possible in a corner of memory until my growing knowledge would lead me back to them in a natural way Yet a certain feeling you may understand tethered me in a circle of a few miles round the point of my arrival 'So far as I could see all the world displayed the same exuberant richness as the Thames valley From every hill I climbed I saw the same abundance of splendid buildings endlessly varied in material and style the same clustering thickets of evergreens the same blossom-laden trees and tree-ferns Here and there water shone like silver and beyond the land rose into blue undulating hills and so faded into the serenity of the sky A peculiar feature which presently attracted my attention was the presence of certain circular wells several as it seemed to me of a very great depth One lay by the path up the hill which I had followed during my first walk Like the others it was rimmed with bronze curiously wrought and protected by a little cupola from the rain Sitting by the side of these wells and peering down into the shafted darkness I could see no gleam of water nor could I start any reflection with a lighted match But in all of them I heard a certain sound: a thud--thud--thud like the beating of some big engine; and I discovered from the flaring of my matches that a steady current of air set down the shafts Further I threw a scrap of paper into the throat of one and instead of fluttering slowly down it was at once sucked swiftly out of sight 'After a time too I came to connect these wells with tall towers standing here and there upon the slopes; for above them there was often just such a flicker in the air as one sees on a hot day above a sun-scorched beach Putting things together I reached a strong suggestion of an extensive system of subterranean ventilation whose true import it was difficult to imagine I was at first inclined to associate it with the sanitary apparatus of these people It was an obvious conclusion but it was absolutely wrong 'And here I must admit that I learned very little of drains and bells and modes of conveyance and the like conveniences during my time in this real future In some of these visions of Utopias and coming times which I have read there is a vast amount of detail about building and social arrangements and so forth But while such details are easy enough to obtain when the whole world is contained in one's imagination they are altogether inaccessible to a real traveller amid such realities as I found here Conceive the tale of London which a negro fresh from Central Africa would take back to his tribe! What would he know of railway companies of social movements of telephone and telegraph wires of the Parcels Delivery Company and postal orders and the like? Yet we at least should be willing enough to explain these things to him! And even of what he knew how much could he make his untravelled friend either
adult	appliances of any kind Yet these people were clothed in pleasant fabrics that must at times need renewal and their sandals though undecorated were fairly complex specimens of metalwork Somehow such things must be made And the little people displayed no vestige of a creative tendency There were no shops no workshops no sign of importations among them They spent all their time in playing gently in bathing in the river in making love in a half-playful fashion in eating fruit and sleeping I could not see how things were kept going 'Then again about the Time Machine: something I knew not what had taken it into the hollow pedestal of the White Sphinx Why? For the life of me I could not imagine Those waterless wells too those flickering pillars I felt I lacked a clue I felt--how shall I put it? Suppose you found an inscription with sentences here and there in excellent plain English and interpolated therewith others made up of words of letters even absolutely unknown to you? Well on the third day of my visit that was how the world of Eight Hundred and Two Thousand Seven Hundred and One presented itself to me! 'That day too I made a friend--of a sort It happened that as I was watching some of the little people bathing in a shallow one of them was seized with cramp and began drifting downstream The main current ran rather swiftly but not too strongly for even a moderate swimmer It will give you an idea therefore of the strange deficiency in these creatures when I tell you that none made the slightest attempt to rescue the weakly crying little thing which was drowning before their eyes When I realized this I hurriedly slipped off my clothes and wading in at a point lower down I caught the poor mite and drew her safe to land A little rubbing of the limbs soon brought her round and I had the satisfaction of seeing she was all right before I left her I had got to such a low estimate of her kind that I did not expect any gratitude from her In that however I was wrong 'This happened in the morning In the afternoon I met my little woman as I believe it was as I was returning towards my centre from an exploration and she received me with cries of delight and presented me with a big garland of flowers--evidently made for me and me alone The thing took my imagination Very possibly I had been feeling desolate At any rate I did my best to display my appreciation of the gift We were soon seated together in a little stone arbour engaged in conversation chiefly of smiles The creature's friendliness affected me exactly as a child's might have done We passed each other flowers and she kissed my hands I did the same to hers Then I tried talk and found that her name was Weena which though I don't know what it meant somehow seemed appropriate enough That was the beginning of a queer friendship which lasted a week and ended--as I will tell you! 'She was exactly like a child She wanted to be with me always She tried to follow me everywhere and on my next journey out and about it went to my heart to tire her down and leave her at last exhausted and calling after me rather plaintively But the problems of the world had to be mastered I had not I said to myself come into the future to carry on a miniature flirtation Yet her distress when I left her was very great her expostulations at the parting were sometimes frantic and I think altogether I had as much trouble as comfort from her devotion Nevertheless she was somehow a very great comfort I thought it was mere childish affection that made her cling to me Until it was too late I did not clearly know what I had inflicted upon her when I left her Nor until it was too late did I clearly understand what she was to me For by merely seeming fond of me and showing in her weak futile way that she cared for me the little doll of a creature presently gave my return to the neighbourhood of the White Sphinx almost the feeling of coming home; and I would watch for her tiny figure of white and gold so soon as I came over the hill 'It was from her too that I learned that fear had not yet left the world She was fearless enough in the daylight and she had the oddest confidence in me; for once in a foolish moment I made threatening grimaces at her and she simply laughed at them But she dreaded the dark dreaded shadows dreaded black things Darkness to her was the one thing dreadful It was a singularly passionate emotion and it set me thinking and observing I discovered then among other things that these little people gathered into the great houses after dark and slept in droves To enter upon them without a light was to put them into a tumult of apprehension I never found one out of doors or one sleeping alone within doors after dark Yet I was still such a blockhead that I missed the lesson of that fear and in spite of Weena's distress I insisted upon sleeping away from these slumbering multitudes 'It troubled her greatly but in the end her odd affection for me triumphed and for five of the nights of our acquaintance including the last night of all she slept with her head pillowed on my arm But my story slips away from me as I speak of her It must have been the night before her rescue that I was awakened about dawn I had been restless dreaming most disagreeably that I was drowned and that sea anemones were feeling over my face with their soft palps I woke with a start and with an odd fancy that some greyish animal had just rushed out of the chamber I tried to get to sleep again but I felt restless and uncomfortable It was that dim grey hour when things are just creeping out of darkness when everything is colourless and clear cut and yet unreal I got up and went down into the great hall and so out upon the flagstones in front of the palace I thought I would make a virtue of necessity and see the sunrise
adult	them On that theory they would have grown innumerable some Eight Hundred Thousand Years hence and it was no great wonder to see four at once But the jest was unsatisfying and I was thinking of these figures all the morning until Weena's rescue drove them out of my head I associated them in some indefinite way with the white animal I had startled in my first passionate search for the Time Machine But Weena was a pleasant substitute Yet all the same they were soon destined to take far deadlier possession of my mind 'I think I have said how much hotter than our own was the weather of this Golden Age I cannot account for it It may be that the sun was hotter or the earth nearer the sun It is usual to assume that the sun will go on cooling steadily in the future But people unfamiliar with such speculations as those of the younger Darwin forget that the planets must ultimately fall back one by one into the parent body As these catastrophes occur the sun will blaze with renewed energy; and it may be that some inner planet had suffered this fate Whatever the reason the fact remains that the sun was very much hotter than we know it 'Well one very hot morning--my fourth I think--as I was seeking shelter from the heat and glare in a colossal ruin near the great house where I slept and fed there happened this strange thing: Clambering among these heaps of masonry I found a narrow gallery whose end and side windows were blocked by fallen masses of stone By contrast with the brilliancy outside it seemed at first impenetrably dark to me I entered it groping for the change from light to blackness made spots of colour swim before me Suddenly I halted spellbound A pair of eyes luminous by reflection against the daylight without was watching me out of the darkness 'The old instinctive dread of wild beasts came upon me I clenched my hands and steadfastly looked into the glaring eyeballs I was afraid to turn Then the thought of the absolute security in which humanity appeared to be living came to my mind And then I remembered that strange terror of the dark Overcoming my fear to some extent I advanced a step and spoke I will admit that my voice was harsh and ill-controlled I put out my hand and touched something soft At once the eyes darted sideways and something white ran past me I turned with my heart in my mouth and saw a queer little ape-like figure its head held down in a peculiar manner running across the sunlit space behind me It blundered against a block of granite staggered aside and in a moment was hidden in a black shadow beneath another pile of ruined masonry 'My impression of it is of course imperfect; but I know it was a dull white and had strange large greyish-red eyes; also that there was flaxen hair on its head and down its back But as I say it went too fast for me to see distinctly I cannot even say whether it ran on all-fours or only with its forearms held very low After an instant's pause I followed it into the second heap of ruins I could not find it at first; but after a time in the profound obscurity I came upon one of those round well-like openings of which I have told you half closed by a fallen pillar A sudden thought came to me Could this Thing have vanished down the shaft? I lit a match and looking down I saw a small white moving creature with large bright eyes which regarded me steadfastly as it retreated It made me shudder It was so like a human spider! It was clambering down the wall and now I saw for the first time a number of metal foot and hand rests forming a kind of ladder down the shaft Then the light burned my fingers and fell out of my hand going out as it dropped and when I had lit another the little monster had disappeared 'I do not know how long I sat peering down that well It was not for some time that I could succeed in persuading myself that the thing I had seen was human But gradually the truth dawned on me: that Man had not remained one species but had differentiated into two distinct animals: that my graceful children of the Upper-world were not the sole descendants of our generation but that this bleached obscene nocturnal Thing which had flashed before me was also heir to all the ages 'I thought of the flickering pillars and of my theory of an underground ventilation I began to suspect their true import And what I wondered was this Lemur doing in my scheme of a perfectly balanced organization? How was it related to the indolent serenity of the beautiful Upper-worlders? And what was hidden down there at the foot of that shaft? I sat upon the edge of the well telling myself that at any rate there was nothing to fear and that there I must descend for the solution of my difficulties And withal I was absolutely afraid to go! As I hesitated two of the beautiful Upper-world people came running in their amorous sport across the daylight in the shadow The male pursued the female flinging flowers at her as he ran 'They seemed distressed to find me my arm against the overturned pillar peering down the well Apparently it was considered bad form to remark these apertures; for when I pointed to this one and tried to frame a question about it in their tongue they were still more visibly distressed and turned away But they were interested by my matches and I struck some to amuse them I tried them again about the well and again I failed So presently I left them meaning to go back to Weena and see what I could get from her But my mind was already in revolution; my guesses and impressions were slipping and sliding to a new adjustment I had now a clue to the import of these wells to the ventilating towers to the mystery of the ghosts; to say nothing of a hint at the meaning of the bronze gates and the fate of the Time Machine! And very vaguely there came a suggestion towards the solution of the economic problem that had puzzled me