Forgot your password?  

Resources for students & teachers

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 280 pages of information about Villa Rubein, and other stories.
came on while we were sitting there.  A wonderful thing is twilight in the country!  It became time for us to go.  There was an avenue of trees close by—­like a church with a window at the end, where golden light came through.  I walked up and down it with her.  ’Will you come again?’ she whispered, and suddenly she lifted up her face to be kissed.  I kissed her as if she were a little child.  And when we said good-bye, her eyes were looking at me across her father’s shoulder, with surprise and sorrow in them.  ‘Why do you go away?’ they seemed to say....  But I must tell you,” he went on hurriedly, “of a thing that happened before we had gone a hundred yards.  We were smoking our pipes, and I, thinking of her—­when out she sprang from the hedge and stood in front of us.  Dalton cried out, ’What are you here for again, you mad girl?’ She rushed up to him and hugged him; but when she looked at me, her face was quite different—­careless, defiant, as one might say—­it hurt me.  I couldn’t understand it, and what one doesn’t understand frightens one.”

IV

“Time went on.  There was no swordsman, or pistol-shot like me in London, they said.  We had as many pupils as we liked—­it was the only part of my life when I have been able to save money.  I had no chance to spend it.  We gave lessons all day, and in the evening were too tired to go out.  That year I had the misfortune to lose my dear mother.  I became a rich man—­yes, sir, at that time I must have had not less than six hundred a year.

“It was a long time before I saw Eilie again.  She went abroad to Dresden with her father’s sister to learn French and German.  It was in the autumn of 1875 when she came back to us.  She was seventeen then—­a beautiful young creature.”  He paused, as if to gather his forces for description, and went on.

“Tall, as a young tree, with eyes like the sky.  I would not say she was perfect, but her imperfections were beautiful to me.  What is it makes you love—­ah! sir, that is very hidden and mysterious.  She had never lost the trick of closing her lips tightly when she remembered her uneven tooth.  You may say that was vanity, but in a young girl—­and which of us is not vain, eh?  ‘Old men and maidens, young men and children!’

“As I said, she came back to London to her little room, and in the evenings was always ready with our tea.  You mustn’t suppose she was housewifely; there is something in me that never admired housewifeliness—­a fine quality, no doubt, still—­” He sighed.

“No,” he resumed, “Eilie was not like that, for she was never quite the same two days together.  I told you her eyes were like the sky—­that was true of all of her.  In one thing, however, at that time, she always seemed the same—­in love for her father.  For me!  I don’t know what I should have expected; but my presence seemed to have the effect of making her dumb; I would

Follow Us on Facebook