Complete Project Gutenberg John Galsworthy Works eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 6,432 pages of information about Complete Project Gutenberg John Galsworthy Works.
affair...!  He—­I find it hard to speak his name—­came to the school two or three times a week.  I used to think I saw a change, a purpose growing up through his recklessness; there seemed a violence in him as if he chafed against my blade.  I had a kind of joy in feeling I had the mastery, and could toss the iron out of his hand any minute like a straw.  I was ashamed, and yet I gloried in it.  Jealousy is a low thing, sir—­a low, base thing!  When he asked me where my wife was, I told him; I was too proud to hide it.  Soon after that he came no more to the school.

“One morning, when I could bear it no longer, I wrote, and said I was coming down.  I would not force myself on her, but I asked her to meet me in the orchard of the old house we called the Convent.  I asked her to be there at four o’clock.  It has always been my, belief that a man must neither beg anything of a woman, nor force anything from her.  Women are generous—­they will give you what they can.  I sealed my letter, and posted it myself.  All the way down I kept on saying to myself, ’She must come—­surely she will come!’”


“I was in high spirits, but the next moment trembled like a man with ague.  I reached the orchard before my time.  She was not there.  You know what it is like to wait?  I stood still and listened; I went to the point whence I could see farthest; I said to myself, ’A watched pot never boils; if I don’t look for her she will come.’  I walked up and down with my eyes on the ground.  The sickness of it!  A hundred times I took out my watch....  Perhaps it was fast, perhaps hers was slow—­I can’t tell you a thousandth part of my hopes and fears.  There was a spring of water, in one corner.  I sat beside it, and thought of the last time I had been there—­and something seemed to burst in me.  It was five o’clock before I lost all hope; there comes a time when you’re glad that hope is dead, it means rest.  ‘That’s over,’ you say, ‘now I can act.’  But what was I to do?  I lay down with my face to the ground; when one’s in trouble, it’s the only thing that helps—­something to press against and cling to that can’t give way.  I lay there for two hours, knowing all the time that I should play the coward.  At seven o’clock I left the orchard and went towards the inn; I had broken my word, but I felt happy....  I should see her—­and, sir, nothing—­nothing seemed to matter beside that.  Tor was in the garden snipping at his roses.  He came up, and I could see that he couldn’t look me in the face.  ‘Where’s my wife?’ I said.  He answered, ‘Let’s get Lucy.’  I ran indoors.  Lucy met me with two letters; the first—­my own—­unopened; and the second, this: 

“’I have left you.  You were good to me, but now—­it is no use. 

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Complete Project Gutenberg John Galsworthy Works from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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