The Lake eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 225 pages of information about The Lake.

’Yes, that is so; that’s how it works out.  Now you won’t be thinking me a fool for having come to see you this evening, Gogarty?  One never knows when one’s impulses are true and when they’re false.  If I hadn’t come the night when the drink craving was upon me, I shouldn’t have been here now.’

’You did quite right to come, Moran; we’ve talked of a great many things.’

’I’ve never talked so plainly to anyone before; I wonder what made me talk as I’ve been talking.  We never talked like this before, did we, Gogarty?  And I wouldn’t have talked to another as I’ve talked to you.  I shall never forget what I owe to you.’

‘You said you were going to leave the parish.’

’I don’t think I thought of anything except to burn myself up with drink.  I wanted to forget, and I saw myself walking ahead day after day, drinking at every public-house.’

‘And just because I saved you, you thought you would come to save me?’

’There was something of that in it.  Gad! it’s very queer; there’s no saying where things will begin and end.  Pass me the tobacco, will you?’

Father Moran began to fill his pipe, and when he had finished filling it, he said: 

’Now I must be going, and don’t be trying to keep me; I’ve stopped long enough.  If I were sent for a purpose—­’

’But you don’t believe seriously, Moran, that you were sent for a purpose?’ Moran didn’t answer, and his silence irritated Father Oliver, and, determined to probe his curate’s conscience, he said:  ’Aren’t you satisfied now that it was only an idea of your own?  You thought to find me gone, and here I am sitting before you.’  After waiting for some time for Moran to speak, he said:  ‘You haven’t answered me.’

‘What should I be answering?’

‘Do you still think you were sent for a purpose?’

‘Well, I do.’

‘You do?’

The priests stood looking at each other for a while.

‘Can’t you give a reason?’

’No; I can give no reason.  It’s a feeling.  I know I haven’t reason on my side.  There you are before me.’

‘It’s very queer.’

He would have liked to have called back Moran.  It seemed a pity to let him go without having probed this matter to the bottom.  He hadn’t asked him if he had any idea in his mind about the future, as to what was going to happen; but it was too late now.  ’Why did he come here disturbing me with his beliefs,’ he cried out, ‘poisoning my will?’ for he had already begun to fear that Moran’s visit might come between him and his project.  The wind sighed a little louder, and Father Oliver said:  ’I wouldn’t be minding his coming here to warn me, though he did say that it wasn’t of his own will that he came, but something from the outside that kept pushing him along the road—­I wouldn’t be minding all that if this wind hadn’t risen.  But the omen may be a double one.’  At that moment the wind shook the trees about the house, and

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Project Gutenberg
The Lake from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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