The Last Man eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 520 pages of information about The Last Man.
this very steadiness is an omen of success; and it becomes the duty of those who love them, to assist in smoothing the obstructions in their path.  Such sentiments actuated our little circle.  Finding Perdita immoveable, we consulted as to the best means of furthering her purpose.  She could not go alone to a country where she had no friends, where she might arrive only to hear the dreadful news, which must overwhelm her with grief and remorse.  Adrian, whose health had always been weak, now suffered considerable aggravation of suffering from the effects of his wound.  Idris could not endure to leave him in this state; nor was it right either to quit or take with us a young family for a journey of this description.  I resolved at length to accompany Perdita.  The separation from my Idris was painful—­but necessity reconciled us to it in some degree:  necessity and the hope of saving Raymond, and restoring him again to happiness and Perdita.  No delay was to ensue.  Two days after we came to our determination, we set out for Portsmouth, and embarked.  The season was May, the weather stormless; we were promised a prosperous voyage.  Cherishing the most fervent hopes, embarked on the waste ocean, we saw with delight the receding shore of Britain, and on the wings of desire outspeeded our well filled sails towards the South.  The light curling waves bore us onward, and old ocean smiled at the freight of love and hope committed to his charge; it stroked gently its tempestuous plains, and the path was smoothed for us.  Day and night the wind right aft, gave steady impulse to our keel—­nor did rough gale, or treacherous sand, or destructive rock interpose an obstacle between my sister and the land which was to restore her to her first beloved,

  Her dear heart’s confessor—­a heart within that heart.

VOL.  II.

CHAPTER I.

During this voyage, when on calm evenings we conversed on deck, watching the glancing of the waves and the changeful appearances of the sky, I discovered the total revolution that the disasters of Raymond had wrought in the mind of my sister.  Were they the same waters of love, which, lately cold and cutting as ice, repelling as that, now loosened from their frozen chains, flowed through the regions of her soul in gushing and grateful exuberance?  She did not believe that he was dead, but she knew that he was in danger, and the hope of assisting in his liberation, and the idea of soothing by tenderness the ills that he might have undergone, elevated and harmonized the late jarring element of her being.  I was not so sanguine as she as to the result of our voyage.  She was not sanguine, but secure; and the expectation of seeing the lover she had banished, the husband, friend, heart’s companion from whom she had long been alienated, wrapt her senses in delight, her mind in placidity.  It was beginning life again; it was leaving barren sands for an abode of fertile beauty; it was a harbour after a tempest, an opiate after sleepless nights, a happy waking from a terrible dream.

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The Last Man from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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