Darkness and Daylight eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 378 pages of information about Darkness and Daylight.
is a nice trim gal.  I wish to goodness Marster Arthur’d done set to her.  I’d like her for a mistress mighty well.  I really b’lieve he has a hankerin’ notion after her, too, an’ it’s nater that he should have.  It’s better for the young to marry, and the old, too, for that matter.  Poor Uncle Abe!  Do you s’pose, Phillis, that he goes over o’ nights to Aunt Dilsey’s cabin sen’ we’ve come away.  Dilsey’s an onery nigger, anyhow,” and with her mind upon Uncle Abel, and her possible rival Dilsey, old Judy forgot Edith Hastings, who, without bidding Arthur good morning, had gallopped home to Collingwood, where she found poor, deluded Richard, waiting and wondering at the non-appearance of Mr. Floyd, who was to buy his western wood lot.

CHAPTER XIV.

The mystery at grassy spring.

For several weeks longer Edith continued taking lessons of Arthur, going sometimes with Richard, but oftener alone, and feeling always that a change had gradually come over her teacher.  He was as kind to her as ever, took quite as much pains with her, and she was sensible of a greater degree of improvement than had marked the days when she trembled every time he touched her hands.  Still there was a change.  He did not bend over her now as he used to do; did not lay his arm across the back of her chair, letting it some times fall by accident upon her shoulders; did not look into her eyes with a glance which made her blush and turn away; in short, he did not look at her at all, if he could help it, and in this very self-denial lay his strength.  He was waging a mighty battle with himself, and inch by inch he was gaining the victory, for victory it would be when he brought himself to think of Edith Hastings without a pang—­to listen to her voice and look into her face without a feeling that she must be his.  He could not do this yet, but he kept himself from telling her of his love by assuming a reserved, studied manner, which led her at last to think he might be angry, and one day, toward the first of March, when he had been more than usually silent, she asked him abruptly how she had offended, her soft eyes filling with tears as she expressed her sorrow if by any thoughtless act she had caused him pain.

“You could not offend me, Edith,” he said; “that would be impossible, and if I am sometimes could an abstracted, it is because I have just cause for being so.  I am very unhappy, Edith, and your visits here to me are like oases to the weary traveller.  Were it not for you I should wish to die; and yet, strange as it may seem, I have prayed to die oftener since I knew you as you now are than I ever did before, I committed a fatal error once and it has embittered my whole existence.  It was early in life, to, before I ever say you, Edith.”

“Why Mr. St. Claire,” she exclaimed, “you were nothing but a boy when you came to Brier Hill.”

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Darkness and Daylight from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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