Mr. Britling Sees It Through eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 523 pages of information about Mr. Britling Sees It Through.

“I must go out to him,” said Teddy, disengaging himself from Letty.

“No,” she said, arresting him with her hand.

“But he will be glad—­”

She stood in her husband’s way.  She had a vision of Mr. Britling suddenly called out of his dreams of God ruling the united states of the world, to rejoice at Teddy’s restoration....

“No,” she said; “it will only make him think again of Hugh—­and how he died.  Don’t go out, Teddy.  Not now.  What does he care for you?...  Let him rest from such things....  Leave him to dream over his atlas....  He isn’t so desolate—­if you knew....  I will tell you, Teddy—­when I can....

“But just now—­No, he will think of Hugh again....  Let him go....  He has God and his atlas there....  They’re more than you think.”



Section 1

It was some weeks later.  It was now the middle of November, and Mr. Britling, very warmly wrapped in his thick dressing-gown and his thick llama wool pyjamas, was sitting at his night desk, and working ever and again at an essay, an essay of preposterous ambitions, for the title of it was “The Better Government of the World.”

Latterly he had had much sleepless misery.  In the day life was tolerable, but in the night—­unless he defended himself by working, the losses and cruelties of the war came and grimaced at him, insufferably.  Now he would be haunted by long processions of refugees, now he would think of the dead lying stiff and twisted in a thousand dreadful attitudes.  Then again he would be overwhelmed with anticipations of the frightful economic and social dissolution that might lie ahead....  At other times he thought of wounds and the deformities of body and spirit produced by injuries.  And sometimes he would think of the triumph of evil.  Stupid and triumphant persons went about a world that stupidity had desolated, with swaggering gestures, with a smiling consciousness of enhanced importance, with their scornful hatred of all measured and temperate and kindly things turned now to scornful contempt.  And mingling with the soil they walked on lay the dead body of Hugh, face downward.  At the back of the boy’s head, rimmed by blood-stiffened hair—­the hair that had once been “as soft as the down of a bird”—­was a big red hole.  That hole was always pitilessly distinct.  They stepped on him—­heedlessly.  They heeled the scattered stuff of his exquisite brain into the clay....

From all such moods of horror Mr. Britling’s circle of lamplight was his sole refuge.  His work could conjure up visions, like opium visions, of a world of order and justice.  Amidst the gloom of world bankruptcy he stuck to the prospectus of a braver enterprise—­reckless of his chances of subscribers....

Section 2

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Mr. Britling Sees It Through from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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