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.

“Certainly you may.”

“When is it likely to be?”

“Not to-day.”

Maddening expression!

Sabre, in his room, went towards his chair.  He was about to drop into it when he recollected something.  He went out into the corridor and along the corridor, past Mr. Fortune’s door (Canon Toomuch coming heavily up the stairs) to Twyning’s room.  He put in his head.  “Oh, I say, Twyning, if Fortune should ever ask you if you told me about that business, you can tell him you didn’t.”

“Oh—­oh, right-o,” said Twyning; and to himself when the door closed, “Funked speaking to him!”


Arrived again in his room, Sabre dropped into his chair.  In his eyes was the look that had been in them when he had tried to explain to Mr. Fortune about the books, what Mr. Fortune had confessed he found a little beyond him.  He thought:  “The books....  Of course Fortune hasn’t imagined them ... seen them grow helped them to grow....  But it hurts.  Like hell it hurts....  And I can’t explain to him how I feel about them....  I can’t explain to any one.”

His thoughts moved on:  “I’ve been twelve years with him.  Twelve years we’ve been daily together, and when I said that about the books I sat there and he sat there—­and just looked.  Stared at each other like masks.  Masks!  Nothing but a mask to be seen for either of us.  I sit behind my mask and he sits behind his and that’s all we see.  Twelve mortal years!  And there’re thousands of people in thousands of offices ... thousands of homes ... just the same.  All behind masks.  Mysterious business.  Extraordinary.  How do we keep behind?  Why do we keep behind?  We’re all going through the same life.  Come the same way.  Go the same way.  You look at insects, ants, scurrying about, and not two of them seem to have a thing in common, not two of them seem to know one another; and you think it’s odd, you think it’s because they don’t know they’re all in the same boat.  But we’re just the same.  They might think it of us.  And we do know.  And yet you get two lives and put them together twelve years in an office ... in a house....  Mabel and I ... practically we just sit and look at each other.  Her mask.  My mask....”

He thought:  “One knows what it is, what it looks like, with ants.  They’re all plugging about like mad like that, not knowing one another, nor caring, because they all seem to be looking for something.  I wonder....  I wonder—­are we?  Is that the trouble?  All looking for something....  You can see it in half the faces you see.  Some wanting, and knowing they are wanting something.  Others wanting something but just putting up with it, just content to be discontented.  You can see it.  Yes, you can.  Looking for what?  Love?  But lots have love.  Happiness?  But aren’t lots happy?  But are they?”

He knitted his brows:  “It goes deeper than that.  It’s some universal thing that’s wanting.  Is it something that religion ought to give, but doesn’t?  Light?  Some new light to give every one certainty in religion, in belief.  Light?”

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