- Software name: appdown
- Software type: Microsoft Framwork
- size: 667MB
She had seemed happier, or at least the little home had been brighter and gayer after Allegra's coming; but as the time wore on it became clear to him that the life and gaiety were all in Allegra herself, and that Isola was spiritless and depressed. It was as if the spring of her life had snapped suddenly, and left her nerveless and joyless, a submissive, unhopeful creature. That sense of disappointment and loss which he had dimly felt, even when his home-coming had been a new thing, had grown and deepened with the passage of time. He had bought his land; he had added to the space and comfort of his house; he had enlarged the stables, and bought a couple of hunters, and a cob for harness; and while these things had been doing, the activity of his days, the fuss and labour of arrangement and supervision, had occupied his mind so pleasantly as to stifle those growing doubts for the time being. But when all was done; when the vine and the figtree had been planted, and he sat down to take his ease in their shade, then he began to feel very keenly that his wife's part in all that he had done was the part of submission only. She liked this or that because he liked it. She was content, and that was all. And the line between contentment and resignation is so faint a demarcation that it seemed to him sometimes as if she were only resigned, as if she suffered life rather than livedsuffered life as holy women suffer some slow, wasting disease, in meek subjection to a mysterious decree.
Allegra was very much of her sweetheart's opinion.She rowed on steadily, hugging the shore under the wooded hillside, where the rich autumn colouring and the clear, cool lights were so full of beautya beauty which she could feel, with a vague, dim sense which just touched the realm of poetry. Perhaps she felt the same sense of loss which Keats or Alfred de Musset would have felt in the stillness of such a scenethe want of something to people the wood and the riversome race of beings loftier than fishermen and peasants; some of those mystic forms which[Pg 32] the poet sees amidst the shadows of old woods or in the creeks and sheltered inlets of a secluded river.
"You are going away?"This was the gist of a message which she wrote half a dozen times, in different words, upon half a dozen forms. Then she tore up all but the last, threw that into a drawer, and began to pace the room feverishly, with her hands clasped before her face.
Was she, as she had desired to be, alone?He knew what the answer would be. He thought her mind was wandering, and he knew there was only one image which could so agitate her.
He stopped those tremulous lips with a kissthe kiss that betrays. The carriage dashed down a steep bill, rattled along a street so narrow that the wheels seemed to grind against the house-fronts on each side, down hill again, and then the horse was pulled up suddenly in a stony square, and the door opened, and the soft, fresh sea-breeze blew[Pg 307] among her loosened hair, and upon her uncovered neck, and she heard the gentle plish-plash of a boat moored against the quay at her feet.
She stood and looked at him with the gravity of maiden innocence and fearlessness; and he, having at last got over his amazement at this sudden apparition of feminine grace and loveliness, as sudden as it was extraordinary in this wild place, dropped his revolver and raised his hat.