If Winter Comes eBook

Arthur Stuart-Menteth Hutchinson
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 462 pages of information about If Winter Comes.

Sabre said, “Good Lord, are you, Perch?  Must you?  Your mother, why, what on earth will she do without you?  She’ll—­”

Young Perch winced painfully.  “I know.  I know.  It pretty well kills me to think of it and I’m having the most frightful scenes with her.  But I’ve thought it all out, Sabre, and I know I’m doing the right thing.  I’ve looked after my mother all my life, and a month ago the idea of leaving her even for a couple of nights would have been unthinkable.  But this is different.  This is—­” He flushed awkwardly—­“you can’t talk that sort of patriotic stuff, you know, but this is, well this is a chap’s country, and I’ve figured it out it’s got to come before my mother.  It’s got to.  She says it will kill her if I go.  I believe it will, Sabre.  And my God, if it does—­but I can’t help it.  I know what’s the right thing.  I’ll tell you something else.”  His face, which had been red and cloudy as with tears, became dark and passionate.  “I’ll tell you something else.  People are saying things about me and to me because I’m young and unmarried and haven’t got a wife to support.  Curse them, Sabre—­what do they know about it?  Aren’t their wives young, strong, able to take care of themselves?  My mother can’t come downstairs without me and can’t let any one else—­”

He rubbed a hand across his eyes and broke off.  “Never mind about that; I know what I’ve got to do.  Look here, Sabre, I tell you where I want your help, like anything.  You know lots of people.  I don’t.  Well, I want to get hold of some nice girl to live with my mother and take care of her in my place while I’m away.  A sort of companion, aren’t they called?  Like that Bypass person up at old Boom Bagshaw’s, only much nicer and younger and friendlier than she is.  You see, I know my mother.  If it was any one of any age, she wouldn’t have her in the house at any price, and she’d send her flying out of the window in about two days if she did have her.  She swears no power on earth will induce her to have any one at all as it is.  But I’m going to manage it if I can get the right person.  I want some one who my mother will indignantly call a chit of a child”—­he gave rather a broken little laugh—­“can’t I hear her saying it!  But she’ll instantly begin to mother her because she is a chit of a child, and to fuss over her and tell her what she ought to eat and what she ought to wear, and does she wear a flannel binder, and all that, just as she does to me.  And in about a week she’ll be as right as rain and writing me letters all day and arguing with the girl how to spell ‘being’ and ’been’—­you know what my mother is.  I say, Sabre, do for God’s sake help me, if you can. Do you know any one?”

Project Gutenberg
If Winter Comes from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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