Bylow Hill eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 71 pages of information about Bylow Hill.

“I want you to make to Isabel a full retraction and explanation of every falsehood you have uttered to her or to me in this matter.”  Leonard was pale again; Arthur burned red a moment, and then turned paler than Leonard.

“You fiend!” gasped the husband.  “I am to exalt you, and abase myself, to her?”

“No.  No, Arthur.  Women are strange; every chance is that in her eyes I shall be abased.”  The speaker went whiter than ever.

“But be that as it may, you shall have lifted your soul out of the mire.  You must do it, Arthur; don’t you see you must?”

Arthur sank into the chair at his side.  He seemed to have guessed what Leonard was keeping unsaid.  A moisture of anguish stood on his brow.  Yet—­

[Illustration:  “Arthur Winslow, I give you five minutes.”]

“I will die before I will do it,” he said.

Leonard drew forth the letter, and then his watch.  “Arthur Winslow, I give you five minutes.  If you don’t make me that promise in that time, I shall this day show this letter to your bishop.”

The rector sat clenching his fingers and spreading them again, and staring at the table.

A bead of sweat, then a second, and then a third started down his forehead.

Presently he clutched the board, drew himself to his feet, and turned to leave the chair, but fell across its arms, slid heavily from them, and with one rude thump and then another lay unconscious on the floor.

Leonard sprang round the table, but when he would have lifted the fallen head it was in the arms of Isabel, and her dilated eyes were on him in a look of passionate aversion.

“Ring!” she cried.  “Ring for Sarah—­and go!

“No! stop! don’t ring! he’s coming to!  Only go! go quickly and forever!  Say not a word,—­oh, not a word!  I heard it all!  Despise me too, for I listened at the door!

“Oh, my husband!  Arthur, look at me, Arthur.  Look, Arthur; it’s your Isabel.  Oh, Arthur, my husband, my husband!”

IX

THE YOUNG YEAR SMILES

Martin Kelly, pious Irishman and out-door factotum of the Byington place, paused from the last snow-shovelling of the season to reply to a wandering salesman of fruit trees.

“Mr. Airthur Winslow or Mr. Linnard Boyington,—­naw, sor! ye can see nayther the wan nor th’ other, whatsomiver!  How can ye see thim, moy graciouz! whin ‘tis two weeks since the two o’ thim was tuck the same noight wid the pneumonias, boy gorra! and the both of thim has thim on the loongs!”

The nursery agent asked how it had happened so.

“Hawh! ask yer grandmother!  All ye can say is they was roipe to catch the maladee, whatsomiver!  Ye cannot always tell how ’tis catched, and whin ye cannot tell, moy graciouz! ye have got the wurrst koind!”

The two sick men recovered very nearly at the same time.

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Bylow Hill from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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