NORƮANGR ABI │ ĆAPTR 22

Ɖ hǎsmeid’z foldñ bac hr windośutrz at et o’cloc ɖ nxt de wz ɖ sǎnd ẃć frst rǎzd Caʈrin; n ś opnd hr îz, wunḍrñ ɖt ɖe cd evr hv bn clozd, on objicts v ćirflnis; hr fîr wz olrdi brnñ, n a brît mornñ hd s’xidd ɖ tempist v ɖ nît. Instnteńsli, wɖ ɖ conśsnis v xistns, rtrnd hr rec̣lex́n v ɖ mańscript; n sprññ fṛm ɖ bed in ɖ vri momnt v ɖ meid’z gwñ awe, ś īgrli c’lectd evri scatrd śīt ẃć hd brst fṛm ɖ rol on its fōlñ t ɖ grǎnd, n flù bac t injô ɖ lux̣́ri v ɖer p’ruzl on hr pilo. Ś nǎ plenli sw ɖt ś mst nt xpct a mańscript v īql leñʈ wɖ ɖ jeṇraḷti v ẃt ś hd śudrd ovr in bcs, fr ɖ rol, sīmñ t cnsist intîrli v smōl dsjôntd śīts, wz oltgɖr bt v trîf̣lñ sîz, n mć les ɖn ś hd s’pozd it t b at frst.

Hr grīdi î glanst rapdli ovr a pej. Ś startd at its import. Cd it b posibl, or dd nt hr snsz ple hr fōls? An invntri v linn, in cōrs n modn caṛctrz, sīmd ol ɖt wz bfr hr! F ɖ evidns v sît mt b trustd, ś hld a wośñbil in hr hand. Ś sizd anɖr śīt, n sw ɖ sem articlz wɖ litl verieśn; a ʈrd, a forʈ, n a fifʈ prizntd nʈñ ny. Śrts, stocñz, cṛvats, n weistcots fest hr in ć. Tū uɖrz, pénd bî ɖ sem hand, marct an xpndićr scersli mor inṭrestñ, in letrz, herpǎdr, śūstrñ, n brìćzbōl. N ɖ larjr śīt, ẃć hd inclozd ɖ rest, sīmd bî its frst cramp lîn, “T poltis ćesnut mer”—a farịr’z bil! Sć wz ɖ c’lex́n v peprz (left phps, az ś cd ɖen s’poz, bî ɖ neglijns v a srvnt in ɖ ples ẃns ś hd tecn ɖm) ẃć hd fild hr wɖ xpcteśn n alarm, n robd hr v haf hr nît’s rest! Ś flt humbld t ɖ dust. Cd nt ɖ advnćr v ɖ ćst hv tòt hr wizdm? A cornr v it, caćñ hr î az ś le, sīmd t rîz p in jujmnt agnst hr. Nʈñ cd nǎ b clirr ɖn ɖ absrdti v hr rīsnt fansiz. T s’poz ɖt a mańscript v mni jeṇreśnz bac cd hv rmend undiscuvrd in a rūm sć az ɖt, so modn, so habitbl!—Or ɖt ś śd b ɖ frst t pzes ɖ scil v unlocñ a cabiṇt, ɖ ci v ẃć wz opn t ol!

Hǎ cd ś hv so impozd on hrslf? Hevn fbid ɖt Henri Tilni śd evr nǒ hr foli! N it wz in a gret meźr hiz ǒn dwñ, fr hd nt ɖ cabiṇt apird so xacli t agri wɖ hiz dscripśn v hr advnćrz, ś śd nvr hv flt ɖ smōlist krioṣti abt it. Ɖs wz ɖ onli cumf̣t ɖt ocŕd. Impeśnt t gt rid v ɖoz hetfl evidnsz v hr foli, ɖoz dtstbl peprz ɖen scatrd ovr ɖ bed, ś rouz d’recli, n foldñ ɖm p az nirli az posibl in ɖ sem śep az bfr, rtrnd ɖm t ɖ sem spot wɖn ɖ cabiṇt, wɖ a vri harti wś ɖt no unṭword axidnt mt evr brñ ɖm fwd agn, t dsgres hr īvn wɖ hrslf.

Ẃ ɖ locs śd hv bn so dificlt t opn, hvr, wz stl smʈñ rmarcbl, fr ś cd nǎ manij ɖm wɖ prfict īz. In ɖs ɖr wz śrli smʈñ mstirịs, n ś induljd in ɖ flaṭrñ sjsćn fr haf a minit, tl ɖ posbiḷti v ɖ dor’z hvñ bn at frst unloct, n v biyñ hrslf its fasnr, dartd intu hr hed, n cost hr anɖr bluś.

Ś got awe az sn az ś cd fṛm a rūm in ẃć hr cnduct pṛdyst sć unpleznt rflex́nz, n faund hr we wɖ ol spīd t ɖ brecfstparlr, az it hd bn pôntd ǎt t hr bî Mis Tilni ɖ īvnñ bfr. Henri wz alon in it; n hiz imījt hop v hr hvñ bn undistrbd bî ɖ tempist, wɖ an arć refṛns t ɖ caṛctr v ɖ bildñ ɖe inhaḅtd, wz rɖr dstresñ. Fr ɖ wrld wd ś nt hv hr wìcnis sspctd, n yt, unīql t an abṣlut fōlshd, wz cnstrend t acnolij ɖt ɖ wind hd cept hr awec a litl. “Bt w hv a ćarmñ mornñ aftr it,” ś add, dzîrñ t gt rid v ɖ subjict; “n stormz n slīplisnis r nʈñ ẃn ɖe r ovr. Ẃt bytifl haysinʈs! I hv jst lrnt t luv a haysinʈ.”

“N hǎ mt y lrn? Bî axidnt or arğmnt?”

“Yr sistr tòt m; I canot tel hǎ. Msz Aḷn yst t tec penz, yir aftr yir, t mc m lîc ɖm; bt I nvr cd, tl I sw ɖm ɖ uɖr de in Milsm Strīt; I am naćṛli indifṛnt abt flǎrz.”

“Bt nǎ y luv a haysinʈ. So mć ɖ betr. Y hv gend a ny sors v injômnt, n it z wel t hv az mni holdz upn hapinis az posibl. Bsdz, a test fr flǎrz z olwz dzîṛbl in yr sx, az a mīnz v gtñ y ǎt v dorz, n tmtñ y t mor frīqnt x’sîz ɖn y wd uɖwz tec. N ɖo ɖ luv v a haysinʈ me b rɖr d’mestic, hu cn tel, ɖ sntimnt wns rezd, bt y me in tîm cm t luv a rǒz?”

“Bt I d nt wont eni sć psyt t gt m ǎt v dorz. Ɖ pleźr v wōcñ n briɖñ freś er z inuf fr m, n in fîn weɖr I am ǎt mor ɖn haf mî tîm. Mmā sz I am nvr wɖn.”

“At eni ret, hvr, I am plizd ɖt y hv lrnt t luv a haysinʈ. Ɖ mir habit v lrnñ t luv z ɖ ʈñ; n a tīćblnis v disṗziśn in a yuñ ledi z a gret blesñ. Hz mî sistr a pleznt mod v instrux́n?”

Caʈrin wz sevd ɖ imbaṛsmnt v atmtñ an ansr bî ɖ entṛns v ɖ jenṛl, huz smîlñ complimnts anǎnst a hapi stet v mînd, bt huz jntl hint v simṗʈetic rli rîzñ dd nt advans hr cmpoźr.

Ɖ eligns v ɖ brecfstset forst itslf on Caʈrin’z notis ẃn ɖe wr sītd at tebl; n, luc̣li, it hd bn ɖ jenṛl’z ćôs. H wz inćantd bî hr apṛbeśn v hiz test, cnfest it t b nīt n simpl, ʈt it rît t incurij ɖ mańfacćr v hiz cuntri; n fr hiz part, t hiz uncriticl palit, ɖ ti wz az wel flevrd fṛm ɖ cle v Stafdśr, az fṛm ɖt v Drezdn or Sêv. Bt ɖs wz qt an old set, prćst tū yirz ago. Ɖ mańfacćr wz mć impruvd sins ɖt tîm; h hd sìn sm bytifl spesimnz ẃn last in tǎn, n hd h nt bn prf̣cli wɖǎt vaṇti v ɖt cnd, mt hv bn tmtd t ordr a ny set. H trustd, hvr, ɖt an oṗtyṇti mt e’r loñ ocŕ v s’lectñ wn—ɖo nt fr himslf. Caʈrin wz probbli ɖ onli wn v ɖ parti hu dd nt unḍstand him.

Śortli aftr brecfst Henri left ɖm fr Wŭdstn, ẃr biznis rqîrd n wd cīp him tū or ʈri dez. Ɖe ol atndd in ɖ hōl t si him mǎnt hiz hors, n imījtli on rīenṭrñ ɖ brecfstrūm, Caʈrin wōct t a windo in ɖ hop v caćñ anɖr glims v hiz figr. “Ɖs z a smẃt hevi cōl upn yr bruɖr’z forttyd,” obzrvd ɖ jenṛl t Eḷnr. “Wŭdstn wl mc bt a sombr apiṛns tde.”

“Z it a priti ples?” asct Caʈrin.

“Ẃt se y, Eḷnr? Spīc yr opińn, fr lediz cn bst tel ɖ test v lediz in rgard t plesz az wel az men. I ʈnc it wd b acnolijd bî ɖ most imparśl î t hv mni rec̣mndeśnz. Ɖ hǎs standz amñ fîn medoz fesñ ɖ sǎʈ-īst, wɖ an xḷnt cićngardn in ɖ sem aspect; ɖ wōlz srǎndñ ẃć I bilt n stoct mslf abt ten yirz ago, fr ɖ beṇfit v mî sun. It z a faṃlilivñ, Mis Morḷnd; n ɖ proṗti in ɖ ples biyñ ćīfli mî ǒn, y me b’liv I tec cer ɖt it śl nt b a bad wn. Dd Henri’z incm dpnd soļi on ɖs livñ, h wd nt b il-pṛvîdd fr. Phps it me sīm od, ɖt wɖ onli tū yungr ćildṛn, I śd ʈnc eni pṛfeśn nesṣri fr him; n srtnli ɖr r momnts ẃn w cd ol wś him disingejd fṛm evri tî v biznis. Bt ɖo I me nt xacli mc convrts v y yuñ lediz, I am śr yr faɖr, Mis Morḷnd, wd agri wɖ m in ʈncñ it xpīdịnt t gv evri yuñ man sm implômnt. Ɖ muni z nʈñ, it z nt an objict, bt implômnt z ɖ ʈñ. Īvn Fredric, mî eldist sun, y si, hu wl phps inherit az cnsidṛbl a landd proṗti az eni prîvt man in ɖ cǎnti, hz hiz pṛfeśn.”

Ɖ impozñ ifct v ɖs last arğmnt wz īql t hiz wśz. Ɖ sîḷns v ɖ ledi pruvd it t b unansṛbl.

Smʈñ hd bn sd ɖ īvnñ bfr v hr biyñ śoun ovr ɖ hǎs, n h nǎ ofrd himslf az hr cnductr; n ɖo Caʈrin hd hopt t xplor it acumṗnid onli bî hiz dōtr, it wz a pṛpozl v tù mć hapinis in itslf, undr eni srcmstansz, nt t b gladli axptd; fr ś hd bn olrdi etīn aurz in ɖ abi, n hd sìn onli a fy v its rūmz. Ɖ netñbox, jst leźrli drwn fʈ, wz clozd wɖ jôfl hest, n ś wz redi t atnd him in a momnt. “N ẃn ɖe hd gn ovr ɖ hǎs, h promist himslf morovr ɖ pleźr v acumṗniyñ hr intu ɖ śruḅriz n gardn.” Ś crtsid hr aqiesns. “Bt phps it mt b mor agriybl t hr t mc ɖoz hr frst objict. Ɖ weɖr wz at preznt fevṛbl, n at ɖs tîm v yir ɖ unsrtnti wz vri gret v its cntinywñ so. Ẃć wd ś prifŕ? H wz īqli at hr srvis. Ẃć dd hiz dōtr ʈnc wd most acord wɖ hr fer frend’z wśz? Bt h ʈt h cd dsrn. Yes, h srtnli réd in Mis Morḷnd’z îz a jdiśs dzîr v mcñ ys v ɖ preznt smîlñ weɖr. Bt ẃn dd ś juj amis? Ɖ abi wd b olwz sef n drî. H yīldd impliṣtli, n wd feć hiz hat n atnd ɖm in a momnt.” H left ɖ rūm, n Caʈrin, wɖ a dis’pôntd, añśs fes, bgan t spīc v hr unwilñnis ɖt h śd b tecñ ɖm ǎt v dorz agnst hiz ǒn incḷneśn, undr a mstecn îdīa v plizñ hr; bt ś wz stopt bî Mis Tilni’z seyñ, wɖ a litl cnfyźn, “I b’liv it wl b wîzist t tec ɖ mornñ ẃl it z so fîn; n d nt b unīzi on mî faɖr’z acǎnt; h olwz wōcs ǎt at ɖs tîm v de.”

Caʈrin dd nt xacli nǒ hǎ ɖs wz t b unḍstd. Ẃ wz Mis Tilni imbaṛst? Cd ɖr b eni unwilñnis on ɖ jenṛl’z sîd t śo hr ovr ɖ abi? Ɖ pṛpozl wz hiz ǒn. N wz nt it od ɖt h śd olwz tec hiz wōc so rli? Nɖr hr faɖr nr Mr Aḷn dd so. It wz srtnli vri pṛvocñ. Ś wz ol impeśns t si ɖ hǎs, n hd scersli eni krioṣti abt ɖ grǎndz. F Henri hd bn wɖ ɖm indd! Bt nǎ ś śd nt nǒ ẃt wz picćresc ẃn ś sw it. Sć wr hr ʈts, bt ś cept ɖm t hrslf, n pt on hr bonit in peśnt discntnt.

Ś wz struc, hvr, bynd hr xpcteśn, bî ɖ granjr v ɖ abi, az ś sw it fr ɖ frst tîm fṛm ɖ lōn. Ɖ hol bildñ inclozd a larj cort; n tū sîdz v ɖ qodrangl, rić in Goʈic orṇmnts, std fwd fr adṃreśn. Ɖ rmendr wz śut of bî nólz v old triz, or lux́urịnt planteśnz, n ɖ stīp wŭdi hilz rîzñ bhnd, t gv it śltr, wr bytifl īvn in ɖ līflis munʈ v Marć. Caʈrin hd sìn nʈñ t cmper wɖ it; n hr fīlñz v dlît wr so stroñ, ɖt wɖǎt wêtñ fr eni betr oʈoṛti, ś boldli brst fʈ in wundr n prêz. Ɖ jenṛl lisnd wɖ asntñ grattyd; n it sīmd az f hiz ǒn esṭmeśn v Norʈangr hd wêtd unfixt tl ɖt aur.

Ɖ cićngardn wz t b nxt admîrd, n h léd ɖ we t it acrs a smōl porśn v ɖ parc.

Ɖ numbr v ecrz cntend in ɖs gardn wz sć az Caʈrin cd nt lisn t wɖǎt dsme, biyñ mor ɖn dubl ɖ xtnt v ol Mr Aḷn’z, az wel az hr faɖr’z, includñ ćrćyard n orćd. Ɖ wōlz sīmd cǎntlis in numbr, endlis in leñʈ; a vilij v hothǎzz sīmd t arîz amñ ɖm, n a hol pariś t b at wrc wɖn ɖ incloźr. Ɖ jenṛl wz flatrd bî hr lcs v s’prîz, ẃć tld him olmst az plenli, az h sn forst hr t tel him in wrdz, ɖt ś hd nvr sìn eni gardnz at ol īql t ɖm bfr; n h ɖen modstli ǒnd ɖt, “wɖǎt eni ambiśn v ɖt sort himslf—wɖǎt eni s’liṣtyd abt it—h dd b’liv ɖm t b unrîvld in ɖ cñdm. F h hd a hobihors, it wz ɖt. H luvd a gardn. Ɖo cerlis inuf in most matrz v ītñ, h luvd gd frūt—or f h dd nt, hiz frendz n ćildṛn dd. Ɖr wr gret vxeśnz, hvr, atndñ sć a gardn az hiz. Ɖ utmost cer cd nt olwz s’kr ɖ most vałbl frūts. Ɖ pîṇri hd yīldd onli wn hundṛd in ɖ last yir. Mr Aḷn, h s’pozd, mst fīl ɖz incnvińnsz az wel az himslf.”

“No, nt at ol. Mr Aḷn dd nt cer abt ɖ gardn, n nvr wnt intu it.”

Wɖ a trîumfnt smîl v slf-saṭsfax́n, ɖ jenṛl wśt h cd d ɖ sem, fr h nvr entrd hiz, wɖǎt biyñ vxt in sm we or uɖr, bî its fōlñ śort v hiz plan.

“Hǎ wr Mr Aḷn’z s’xeśnhǎzz wrct?” dscrîbñ ɖ nećr v hiz ǒn az ɖe entrd ɖm.

“Mr Aḷn hd onli wn smōl hothǎs, ẃć Msz Aḷn hd ɖ ys v fr hr plants in wintr, n ɖr wz a fîr in it nǎ n ɖen.”

“H z a hapi man!” sd ɖ jenṛl, wɖ a lc v vri hapi cntmt.

Hvñ tecn hr intu evri dviźn, n léd hr undr evri wōl, tl ś wz harṭli wiri v siyñ n wunḍrñ, h sufrd ɖ grlz at last t sīz ɖ advantij v an ǎtr dor, n ɖen xpresñ hiz wś t xamin ɖ ifct v sm rīsnt olṭreśnz abt ɖ tīhǎs, pṛpozd it az no unpleznt xtnśn v ɖer wōc, f Mis Morḷnd wr nt tîrd. “Bt ẃr r y gwñ, Eḷnr? Ẃ d y ćūz ɖt cold, damp paʈ t it? Mis Morḷnd wl gt wet. Ǎr bst we z acrs ɖ parc.”

“Ɖs z so fevrit a wōc v mîn,” sd Mis Tilni, “ɖt I olwz ʈnc it ɖ bst n nirist we. Bt phps it me b damp.”

It wz a naro wîndñ paʈ ʈru a ʈic grov v old Scoć fr̋z; n Caʈrin, struc bî its glūmi aspect, n īgr t entr it, cd nt, īvn bî ɖ jenṛl’z disapṛbeśn, b cept fṛm stepñ fwd. H psivd hr incḷneśn, n hvñ agn rjd ɖ pli v hlʈ in ven, wz tù p’lît t mc frɖr opziśn. H xkzd himslf, hvr, fṛm atndñ ɖm: “Ɖ rez v ɖ sún wr nt tù ćirfl fr him, n h wd mīt ɖm bî anɖr cors.” H trnd awe; n Caʈrin wz śoct t fînd hǎ mć hr spirits wr rlivd bî ɖ seṗreśn. Ɖ śoc, hvr, biyñ les riyl ɖn ɖ rlif, ofrd it no injri; n ś bgan t tōc wɖ īzi geyti v ɖ dlîtfl meḷncli ẃć sć a grov inspîrd.

“I am ptiklrli fond v ɖs spot,” sd hr cmpańn, wɖ a sai. “It wz mî muɖr’z fevrit wōc.”

Caʈrin hd nvr hŕd Msz Tilni mnśnd in ɖ faṃli bfr, n ɖ inṭrest xîtd bî ɖs tndr rmembṛns śoud itslf d’recli in hr oltrd cǎntinns, n in ɖ atntiv pōz wɖ ẃć ś wêtd fr smʈñ mor.

“I yst t wōc hir so ofn wɖ hr!” add Eḷnr; “ɖo I nvr luvd it ɖen, az I hv luvd it sins. At ɖt tîm indd I yst t wundr at hr ćôs. Bt hr meṃri indirz it nǎ.”

“N òt it nt,” rflectd Caʈrin, “t indir it t hr huzbnd? Yt ɖ jenṛl wd nt entr it.” Mis Tilni cntinywñ sîḷnt, ś vnćrd t se, “Hr deʈ mst hv bn a gret aflix́n!”

“A gret n incrisñ wn,” rplaid ɖ uɖr, in a lo vôs. “I wz onli ʈrtīn ẃn it hapnd; n ɖo I flt mî los phps az stroñli az wn so yuñ cd fīl it, I dd nt, I cd nt, ɖen nǒ ẃt a los it wz.” Ś stopt fr a momnt, n ɖen add, wɖ gret frmnis, “I hv no sistr, y nǒ—n ɖo Henri—ɖo mî bruɖrz r vri afx́ṇt, n Henri z a gret dīl hir, ẃć I am most ʈancfl fr, it z imposibl fr m nt t b ofn soliṭri.”

“T b śr y mst mis him vri mć.”

“A muɖr wd hv bn olwz preznt. A muɖr wd hv bn a constnt frend; hr inflụns wd hv bn bynd ol uɖr.”

“Wz ś a vri ćarmñ wmn? Wz ś hansm? Wz ɖr eni picćr v hr in ɖ abi? N ẃ hd ś bn so parśl t ɖt grov? Wz it fṛm djx́n v spirits?”—wr qsćnz nǎ īgrli pord fʈ; ɖ frst ʈri rsivd a redi afrṃtiv, ɖ tū uɖrz wr pást bî; n Caʈrin’z inṭrest in ɖ dsist Msz Tilni ōgmntd wɖ evri qsćn, ẃɖr ansrd or nt. V hr unhapinis in marij, ś flt pswedd. Ɖ jenṛl srtnli hd bn an uncînd huzbnd. H dd nt luv hr wōc: cd h ɖrfr hv luvd hr? N bsdz, hansm az h wz, ɖr wz a smʈñ in ɖ trn v hiz fīćrz ẃć spouc hiz nt hvñ bhevd wel t hr.

“Hr picćr, I s’poz,” bluśñ at ɖ consyṃt art v hr ǒn qsćn, “hañz in yr faɖr’z rūm?”

“No; it wz intndd fr ɖ drw̃rūm; bt mî faɖr wz dșaṭsfaid wɖ ɖ pentñ, n fr sm tîm it hd no ples. Sn aftr hr deʈ I obtend it fr mî ǒn, n huñ it in mî bedćembr—ẃr I śl b hapi t śo it y; it z vri lîc.” Hir wz anɖr prūf. A portrit—vri lîc—v a dpartd wîf, nt valyd bî ɖ huzbnd! H mst hv bn dredf̣li cruwl t hr!

Caʈrin atmtd no longr t hîd fṛm hrslf ɖ nećr v ɖ fīlñz ẃć, in spît v ol hiz atnśnz, h hd prīvịsli xîtd; n ẃt hd bn terr n dslîc bfr, wz nǎ abṣlut avrśn. Yes, avrśn! Hiz cruwlti t sć a ćarmñ wmn md him odịs t hr. Ś hd ofn réd v sć caṛctrz, caṛctrz ẃć Mr Aḷn hd bn yst t cōl uņaćṛl n oṿdrwn; bt hir wz prūf poẓtiv v ɖ contrri.

Ś hd jst setld ɖs pônt ẃn ɖ end v ɖ paʈ bròt ɖm d’recli upn ɖ jenṛl; n in spît v ol hr vrćs inḍgneśn, ś faund hrslf agn oblîjd t wōc wɖ him, lisn t him, n īvn t smîl ẃn h smîld. Biyñ no longr ebl, hvr, t rsiv pleźr fṛm ɖ srǎndñ objicts, ś sn bgan t wōc wɖ laṣtyd; ɖ jenṛl psivd it, n wɖ a cnsrn fr hr hlʈ, ẃć sīmd t rproć hr fr hr opińn v him, wz most rjnt fr rtrnñ wɖ hiz dōtr t ɖ hǎs. H wd folo ɖm in a qortr v an aur. Agn ɖe partd—bt Eḷnr wz cōld bac in haf a minit t rsiv a strict ćarj agnst tecñ hr frend rnd ɖ abi tl hiz rtrn. Ɖs secnd instns v hiz añzayti t dle ẃt ś so mć wśt fr struc Caʈrin az vri rmarcbl.

ĆAPTRZ: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31