"—It's not that."The year '71 was on the whole a bad one. The summer was parched, the autumn sodden, and the winter frozen. Reuben's oats after some excellent promises failed him abruptly, as was the way with crops on Boarzell. His wheat was better in quality but poor in quantity, his mangolds had the rot, and his hops, except for the old field by the lane, were brown and ragged with blight. 没有 But David's death struck home. David and William were the only two children whom he had really loved. They were his hope, his future. Once again he tasted the agonies of bereaved fatherhood, with the added tincture of hopelessness. He would never again see David's brown, strong, merry face, hear his voice, build plans for him. For some days the paternal feeling was so strong that he craved for his boy quite apart from Odiam, just for himself. It had taken eighty years and his son's death to make a father of him. Those who brothers' blood have shed,
Well, he had taken it now—it was too late to give it back. Besides, why should he not have it? Those ten pounds probably did not mean much to the Squire, but they meant all things to him and Bessie. He could marry her now. He could take her away, find work on some distant farm, and comfortably set up house. The possibilities of ten pounds were unlimited—at all events they could give him all he asked of life. 没有 Who round us hath shed "Stouter, and darker. What black brows he has, Mus' Piper!" The crest of Boarzell was just visible against the luminous sky. There was something sinister and challenging about those firs. The gorse round their trunks seemed in that strange half-stormy, half-peaceful night to throw off a faint glimmer of gold. The fiddle wept and sang into the darkness, and outside the window two cherry trees scraped their boughs together.
点点 Naomi smiled feebly, and that smile, so wan, so patient, so utterly wistful, so utterly unregretful, with which almost every mother first greets the father of her child, went straight to Reuben's heart. He fell on his knees by the bed, and covered her hand and her thin arm with kisses. Their eyes met over the flames, then Robert remembered the need for keeping up appearances, and said he wanted his fortune told. He could scarcely wait while Meridiana muttered about a fair young lady and[Pg 168] a heap of money coming to him in a year or two. Bessie slipped round the brazier and stood beside him, their hands impudently locked, each finger of the boy's clinging round a finger of the girl's.
"Wot's happened?" he called to Boorman. 接深 "—It's not that."”
"No w?onder as she cudn't stick to him—hard, queer chap as he be." 说明 "I dunno—?un't seen un this mornun. Ah—thur he be!"”