The Visioning eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 455 pages of information about The Visioning.

“Well, what did she do it for?” he demanded.  “Come now, Captain, you can’t make out much of a case for her.  Mrs. Leonard’s word is just right—­trivial.  She said she was tired of things.  Tired—­tired—­tired of things, she put it.  Tired of walking down the same street.  Tired of hanging her hat on the same kind of a peg!  Now, Captain—­if you can put up any defense for a girl who kills herself because she’s tired of hanging her hat on a certain kind of peg!  Well,” he laughed, “if you can, all I’ve got to say is that you’d better leave the army and go in for criminal law.”

“Why didn’t she walk down some other street,” he resumed, as no one broke the pause.  “If it’s a matter of life and death—­a person might walk down some other street!”

“And I’ve no doubt,” said Captain Prescott, “that if it were known her life, as well as her hat, hung upon it—­she might have had a different kind of peg.”

They laughed.

“Oh, of course, the secret of it is,” pronounced the Colonel, “she was a neurotic.”

For the first time Katie spoke.  “I think it’s such a fine thing we got hold of that word.  Since we’ve known about neurotics we can just throw all the emotion and suffering and tragedy of the world in the one heap and leave it to the scientists.  It lets us out so beautifully, doesn’t it?”

“Oh, but Katie!” admonished Mrs. Prescott.  “Think of it!  What is the world coming to?  Going forth to meet one’s God because one doesn’t like the peg for one’s hat!”

Katie had a feeling of every nerve in Ann’s body leaping up in frenzy. “God?” she laughed wildly.  “Don’t drag Him into it!  Do you think He cares”—­turning upon Mrs. Prescott as if she would spring at her—­“do you think for a minute He cares—­what kind of pegs our hats are on!”


Katie’s memory of what followed was blurred.  She remembered how relieved she was when Ann’s laugh—­oh the memory of that laugh was clear enough!—­gave way to sobbing.  Sobbing was easier to deal with.  She said something about her friend’s being ill, and that they would have to excuse them.  She almost wanted to laugh—­or was it cry?—­herself at the way Harry Prescott was looking from Ann to his mother.  After she got Ann in the house she went back and begged somebody’s pardon—­she wasn’t sure whose—­and told Colonel Leonard that of course he could understand it on the score of Ann’s being a neurotic.  She was afraid she might have said that rather disagreeably.  And she believed she told Mrs. Prescott—­she had to tell Mrs. Prescott something, she looked so frightened and hurt and outraged—­that Ann had a form of nervous trouble which made it impossible for her to hear the name of God.

The hardest was Wayne.  She came to him on the porch after the others had gone—­they were not long in dispersing.  “Wayne,” she said, “I’m sorry to have embarrassed you.”

Project Gutenberg
The Visioning from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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