A Love Episode eBook

Émile Gaboriau
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 348 pages of information about A Love Episode.
was brought for her use from the drawing-room by Juliette’s direction, her eyes never quitted the family.  Lucien she now treated with great reserve, annoyed it seemed by his questions and antics, especially when the doctor was present.  On those occasions she would stretch herself out as if wearied, gazing before her with her eyes wide open.  For Helene the afternoons were pregnant with anguish.  She always returned, however, returned in spite of the feeling of revolt which wrung her whole being.  Every day when, on his arrival home, Henri printed a kiss on Juliette’s hair, her heart leaped in its agony.  And at those moments, if to hide the agitation of her face she pretended to busy herself with Jeanne, she would notice that the child was even paler than herself, with her black eyes glaring and her chin twitching with repressed fury.  Jeanne shared in her suffering.  When the mother turned away her head, heartbroken, the child became so sad and so exhausted that she had to be carried upstairs and put to bed.  She could no longer see the doctor approach his wife without changing countenance; she would tremble, and turn on him a glance full of all the jealous fire of a deserted mistress.

“I cough in the morning,” she said to him one day.  “You must come and see for yourself.”

Rainy weather ensued, and Jeanne became quite anxious that the doctor should commence his visits once more.  Yet her health had much improved.  To humor her, Helene had been constrained to accept two or three invitations to dine with the Deberles.

At last the child’s heart, so long torn by hidden sorrow, seemingly regained quietude with the complete re-establishment of her health.  She would again ask Helene the old question—­“Are you happy, mother darling?”

“Yes, very happy, my pet,” was the reply.

And this made her radiant.  She must be pardoned her bad temper in the past, she said.  She referred to it as a fit which no effort of her own will could prevent, the result of a headache that came on her suddenly.  Something would spring up within her—­she wholly failed to understand what it was.  She was tempest-tossed by a multitude of vague imaginings—­nightmares that she could not even have recalled to memory.  However, it was past now; she was well again, and those worries would nevermore return.

CHAPTER XV.

The night was falling.  From the grey heaven, where the first of the stars were gleaming, a fine ashy dust seemed to be raining down on the great city, raining down without cessation and slowly burying it.  The hollows were already hidden deep in gloom, and a line of cloud, like a stream of ink, rose upon the horizon, engulfing the last streaks of daylight, the wavering gleams which were retreating towards the west.  Below Passy but a few stretches of roofs remained visible; and as the wave rolled on, darkness soon covered all.

“What a warm evening!” ejaculated Helene, as she sat at the window, overcome by the heated breeze which was wafted upwards from Paris.

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A Love Episode from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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