V. V.'s Eyes eBook

Henry Sydnor Harrison
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 298 pages of information about V. V.'s Eyes.

That, by a little, drew the long-bow too hard.  Cally saw that the small three-years’ buncher, through politeness or otherwise, was speaking without reference to the truth.  And hard upon that she had another thought, striking down the impulse to cross-examine further.  What an undignified, what a cowardly way, to try to find things out!  What a baby she was, to be sure!...  V. Vivian knew about the Works, though it was certainly no affair of his.  This frail girl, who did look rather sick now that you stopped and looked at her, knew all about it.  Only she, her father’s daughter, knew nothing, wrapped in her layers of pretty pink wool ...

The lady came abruptly to her feet.

“I’m glad to hear it,” said she ...  “But I ’m afraid I must go on now.  Some one is waiting for me outside.”

“Oh!—­yes, ma’am!”

Kern had risen with her, though she had not learned that from the Netiquette.  Much it would have amazed her to know that the heavenly visitor was regarding her with a flickering conviction of inferiority....

“Good-bye, then.  I hope you’ll soon get your strength back again....  And I’m very glad I saw you.”

And then there was her hand held out; not lady to lady, of course, but still her lady’s hand.  Poor Kern, with her exaltation and her pangs, felt ready to go down on one knee to take it.

“Oh, ma’am!” she stammered.  “I’m the glad one ...”

Miss Heth smiled—­oh, so sweet, almost like in the Dream—­and then it was all over, and she was walking away, with the loveliest rustle ever was.  And Kern stood lost in the thronging aisle, staring at the point where she had disappeared and giving little pinches to her thin arm—­just to make certain-sure, y’ know ...

This till the voice of Miss Whirtle spoke in her ear: 

“Say, Kurrin, I like that!  Whyn’t you ask me to shake hands with your swell dame friend?”

And Miss Heth, out in the crowded street, was heading toward Morland’s with an adventurous resolution in her mind.

It had needed but a touch to make up her mind here, whether she realized it or not; and this touch the girl Corinne had given her.  Now, too, impulse met convenient opportunity.  For two weeks she had been thinking that if she did ever happen to go to the Works, she would make a point of going in some offhand, incidental sort of way, thus proving to herself and the public that she had not the slightest responsibility for whatever might be going on there. (How could she possibly have, no matter what Mr. V.V. thought, with his exaggerated sympathies for the poor?) Now here was Hugo waiting, perfectly fitted, to her need.  What could be more natural and incidental than this?  She would simply be showing her father’s factory to her friend, Mr. Canning....

And perhaps Cally had an even deeper feeling of Mr. Canning’s admirable suitability in this connection.  Somewhere just above the line of consciousness, did there not lie the subtle thought that, if what she saw at the Works should have power to work dangerously on her own sympathies, Hugo, with his strong worldly sense, his material perfection, his whole splendid embodiment of the victorious-class ideal, would be just the corrective she needed to keep her safe and sane?...

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V. V.'s Eyes from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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