TU Đ LÎTHǍS │ PART II: TÎM PASZ

PARTS: I – Ɖ WINDO; II – TÎM PASZ; III – Ɖ LÎTHǍS

Ćaptrz in Part II: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Ɖ WINDO


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1

“Wel, w mst wêt fr ɖ fyćr t śo,” sd Mr Báncs, cmñ in fṛm ɖ teris.

“It’s olmst tù darc t si,” sd Andru, cmñ p fṛm ɖ bīć.

“Wn cn hardli tel ẃć z ɖ sì n ẃć z ɖ land,” sd Pru.

“D w līv ɖt lît brnñ?” sd Lili az ɖe tc ɖer cots of indorz.

“No,” sd Pru, “nt f evrwn’z in.”

“Andru,” ś cōld bac, “jst pt ǎt ɖ lît in ɖ hōl.”

Wn bî wn ɖ lamps wr ol xtnḡśt, xpt ɖt Mr Carmîcl, hu lîct t lî awec a litl rīdñ Vrjil, cept hiz candl brnñ rɖr longr ɖn ɖ rest.


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2

So wɖ ɖ lamps ol pt ǎt, ɖ mūn sunc, n a ʈin ren drumñ on ɖ rūf a dǎnporñ v imns darcnis bgan. Nʈñ, it sīmd, cd svîv ɖ flud, ɖ pṛfyźn v darcnis ẃć, crīpñ in at cīhoulz n creṿsz, stoul rnd windoblîndz, cem intu bedrūmz, swoloud p hir a jug n besn, ɖr a bol v red n yelo deliaz, ɖr ɖ śarp éjz n frm bulc v a ćst v drorz. Nt onli wz frnićr cnfǎndd; ɖr wz scersli enʈñ left v bodi or mînd bî ẃć wn cd se, “Ɖs z h” or “Ɖs z ś.” Smtmz a hand wz rezd az f t cluć smʈñ or word of smʈñ, or smbdi grond, or smbdi laft alǎd az f śẹrñ a joc wɖ nʈñnis.

Nʈñ strd in ɖ drw̃rūm or in ɖ dînñrūm or on ɖ sterces. Onli ʈru ɖ rusti hinjz n swoḷn sì-môsnd wŭdwrc srtn erz, dtaćt fṛm ɖ bodi v ɖ wind (ɖ hǎs wz ramśacl aftr ol) crept rnd cornrz n vnćrd indorz. Olmst wn mt imajn ɖm, az ɖe entrd ɖ drw̃rūm qsćnñ n wunḍrñ, toyñ wɖ ɖ flap v haññ wōlpepr, ascñ, wd it hañ mć longr, ẃn wd it fōl? Ɖen smuɖli bruśñ ɖ wōlz, ɖe pást on ḿzñli az f ascñ ɖ red n yelo rozz on ɖ wōlpepr ẃɖr ɖe wd fed, n qsćnñ (jntli, fr ɖr wz tîm at ɖer dspozl) ɖ torn letrz in ɖ westpepr bascit, ɖ flǎrz, ɖ bcs, ol v ẃć wr nǎ opn t ɖm n ascñ, Wr ɖe alîz? Wr ɖe eṇmiz? Hǎ loñ wd ɖe indyr?

So sm randm lît d’rectñ ɖm wɖ its pel ftfōl upn ster n mat, fṛm sm uncuvrd star, or wonḍrñ śip, or ɖ Lîthǎs īvn, wɖ its pel ftfōl upn ster n mat, ɖ litl erz mǎntd ɖ sterces n nozd rnd bedrūm dorz. Bt hir śrli, ɖe mst sīs. Ẃtvr els me periś n dis’pir, ẃt lîz hir z stedfst. Hir wn mt se t ɖoz slîdñ lîts, ɖoz fumḅlñ erz ɖt briɖ n bnd ovr ɖ bed itslf, hir y cn nɖr tuć nr dstrô. Upn ẃć, wiṛli, gosṭli, az f ɖe hd feɖr-lît fngrz n ɖ lît psistnsi v feɖrz, ɖe wd lc, wns, on ɖ śut îz, n ɖ lūsli claspñ fngrz, n fold ɖer garmnts wiṛli n dis’pir. N so, nozñ, rubñ, ɖe wnt t ɖ windo on ɖ sterces, t ɖ srvnts’ bedrūmz, t ɖ boxz in ɖ atics; dsndñ, blanćt ɖ aplz on ɖ dînñrūm tebl, fumbld ɖ petlz v rozz, traid ɖ picćr on ɖ īzl, bruśt ɖ mat n blù a litl sand alñ ɖ flor. At leñʈ, dzistñ, ol sīst tgɖr, gaɖrd tgɖr, ol said tgɖr; ol tgɖr gev of an emlis gust v lamnteśn t ẃć sm dor in ɖ cićn rplaid; swuñ wîd; admitd nʈñ; n slamd t.

[Hir Mr Carmîcl, hu wz rīdñ Vrjil, blù ǎt hiz candl. It wz past midnît.]


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3

Bt ẃt aftr ol z wn nît? A śort spes, ispeśli ẃn ɖ darcnis dimz so sn, n so sn a brd sñz, a coc croz, or a fent grīn qcnz, lîc a trnñ līf, in ɖ holo v ɖ wev. Nît, hvr, s’xidz t nît. Ɖ wintr holdz a pac v ɖm in stor n dīlz ɖm īqli, īvnli, wɖ indfatiġbl fngrz. Ɖe leñʈn; ɖe darcn. Sm v ɖm hold aloft clir planits, plets v brîtnis. Ɖ ōtm triz, ravijd az ɖe r, tec on ɖ flaś v tatrd flagz cinḍlñ in ɖ glūm v cūl cʈīdṛlcevz ẃr gold letrz on marbl pejz dscrîb deʈ in batl n hǎ bonz blīć n brn far awe in Indịn sandz. Ɖ ōtmtrīz glīm in ɖ yelo mūnlît, in ɖ lît v harvistmūnz, ɖ lît ẃć meloz ɖ eṇji v lebr, n smuɖz ɖ stubl, n brñz ɖ wev lapñ blu t ɖ śor.

It sīmd nǎ az f, tućt bî hymn penitns n ol its tôl, dvîn gdnis hd partd ɖ crtn n dspleid bhnd it, sngl, dstñt, ɖ hér irect; ɖ wev fōlñ; ɖ bot rocñ; ẃć, dd w dzrv ɖm, śd b ǎrz olwz. Bt alas, dvîn gdnis, twićñ ɖ cord, drwz ɖ crtn; it dz nt plīz him; h cuvrz hiz treźrz in a drenć v hêl, n so brecs ɖm, so cnfyzz ɖm ɖt it sīmz impoṣbl ɖt ɖer cām śd evr rtrn or ɖt w śd evr cmpoz fṛm ɖer fragmnts a prfict hol or rīd in ɖ litrd pìsz ɖ clir wrdz v truʈ. Fr ǎr penitns dzrvz a glims onli; ǎr tôl respît onli.

Ɖ nîts nǎ r fl v wind n dstrux́n; ɖ triz plunj n bnd n ɖer līvz flî heltr-sceltr untl ɖ lōn z plastrd wɖ ɖm n ɖe lî páct in gutrz n ćoc ren pîps n scatr damp paɖz. Olso ɖ sì tosz itslf n brecs itslf, n śd eni slīpr fansiyñ ɖt h mt fînd on ɖ bīć an ansr t hiz dǎts, a śerr v hiz soḷtyd, ʈro of hiz bedcloɖz n g dǎn bî himslf t wōc on ɖ sand, no imij wɖ sembḷns v srvñ n dvîn promttyd cmz reḍli t hand brññ ɖ nît t ordr n mcñ ɖ wrld rflect ɖ cumṗs v ɖ soul. Ɖ hand dwindlz in hiz hand; ɖ vôs beloz in hiz ir. Olmst it wd apir ɖt it z yslis in sć cnfyźn t asc ɖ nît ɖoz qsćnz az t ẃt, n ẃ, n ẃr-fr, ẃć tmt ɖ slīpr fṛm hiz bed t sīc an ansr.

[Mr Ramzi, stumḅlñ alñ a pasij wn darc mornñ, strećt hiz armz ǎt, bt Msz Ramzi hvñ daid rɖr sudnli ɖ nît bfr, hiz armz, ɖo strećt ǎt, rmend emti.]


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4

So wɖ ɖ hǎs emti n ɖ dorz loct n ɖ matṛsz rold rnd, ɖoz stre erz, advansgardz v gret armiz, blustrd in, bruśt bér bordz, nibld n fand, met nʈñ in bedrūm or drw̃rūm ɖt hoļi rzistd ɖm bt onli haññz ɖt flapt, wŭd ɖt crīct, ɖ bér legz v teblz, sōspnz n ćîna olrdi frd, tarniśt, cract. Ẃt ppl hd śed n left—a per v śuz, a śūtñcap, sm fedd scrts n cots in wordrǒbz—ɖoz alon cept ɖ hymn śep n in ɖ emtinis indicetd hǎ wns ɖe wr fild n aṇmetd; hǎ wns handz wr bizi wɖ hcs n butnz; hǎ wns ɖ lcñglas hd hld a fes; hd hld a wrld holoud ǎt in ẃć a figr trnd, a hand flaśt, ɖ dor opnd, in cem ćildṛn ruśñ n tumḅlñ; n wnt ǎt agn. Nǎ, de aftr de, lît trnd, lîc a flǎr rflectd in wōtr, its śarp imij on ɖ wōl oṗzit. Onli ɖ śadoz v ɖ triz, fluṛśñ in ɖ wind, md obesns on ɖ wōl, n fr a momnt darcnd ɖ pūl in ẃć lît rflectd itslf; or brdz, flayñ, md a soft spot flutr slǒli acrs ɖ bedrūm flor.

So luvlinis rênd n stilnis, n tgɖr md ɖ śep v luvlinis itslf, a form fṛm ẃć lîf hd partd; solitri lîc a pūl at īvnñ, far distnt, sìn fṛm a trenwindo, vaṇśñ so qcli ɖt ɖ pūl, pel in ɖ īvnñ, z scersli robd v its soḷtyd, ɖo wns sìn. Luvlinis n stilnis claspt handz in ɖ bedrūm, n amñ ɖ śrǎdd jugz n śītd ćerz īvn ɖ prayñ v ɖ wind, n ɖ soft nǒz v ɖ clami sì-erz, rubñ, snuf̣lñ, iṭretñ, n riiṭretñ ɖer qsćnz—“Wl y fed? Wl y periś?”—scersli dstrbd ɖ pīs, ɖ indifṛns, ɖ er v pyr integṛti, az f ɖ qsćn ɖe asct scersli nīdd ɖt ɖe śd ansr: w rmen.

Nʈñ it sīmd cd brec ɖt imij, c’rupt ɖt iṇsns, or dstrb ɖ sweyñ mantl v sîḷns ẃć, wīc aftr wīc, in ɖ emti rūm, wov intu itslf ɖ fōlñ crîz v brdz, śips hūtñ, ɖ dron n hum v ɖ fīldz, a dog’z barc, a man’z śǎt, n foldd ɖm rnd ɖ hǎs in sîḷns. Wns onli a bord sprañ on ɖ landñ; wns in ɖ midl v ɖ nît wɖ a ror, wɖ a rupćr, az aftr snć̣riz v qiesns, a roc rendz itslf fṛm ɖ mǎntin n hrtlz craśñ intu ɖ vali, wn fold v ɖ śōl lūsnd n swuñ t n fro. Ɖen agn pīs dsndd; n ɖ śado wevrd; lît bnt t its ǒn imij in aḍreśn on ɖ bedrūm wōl; n Msz McNab, tẹrñ ɖ veil v sîḷns wɖ handz ɖt hd std in ɖ wośtub, grîndñ it wɖ būts ɖt hd crunćt ɖ śngl, cem az drectd t opn ol windoz, n dust ɖ bedrūmz.


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5

Az ś lrćt (fr ś rold lîc a śip at sì) n lird (fr hr îz fél on nʈñ d’recli, bt wɖ a sîdloñ glans ɖt depṛcetd ɖ scorn n angr v ɖ wrld—ś wz witlis, ś ń it), az ś clućt ɖ banistrz n hōld hrslf upsterz n rold fṛm rūm t rūm, ś sañ. Rubñ ɖ glas v ɖ loñ lcñglas n lirñ sîdwêz at hr swññ figr a sǎnd iśùd fṛm hr lips—smʈñ ɖt hd bn ge twenti yirz bfr on ɖ stej phps, hd bn humd n danst t, bt nǎ, cmñ fṛm ɖ tuʈlis, boṇtd, certecñ wmn, wz robd v mīnñ, wz lîc ɖ vôs v witlisnis, hymr, psistnsi itslf, trodn dǎn bt sprññ p agn, so ɖt az ś lrćt, dustñ, wîpñ, ś sīmd t se hǎ it wz wn loñ soro n trubl, hǎ it wz gtñ p n gwñ t bed agn, n brññ ʈñz ǎt n ptñ ɖm awe agn. It wz nt īzi or snug ɖs wrld ś hd noun fr clos on sevnti yirz. Baud dǎn ś wz wɖ wirinis. Hǎ loñ, ś asct, crīcñ n gronñ on hr niz undr ɖ bed, dustñ ɖ bordz, hǎ loñ śl it indyr? bt hobld t hr fīt agn, pld hrslf p, n agn wɖ hr sîdloñ lir ẃć slipt n trnd asd īvn fṛm hr ǒn fes, n hr ǒn soroz, std n gept in ɖ glas, emlisli smîlñ, n bgan agn ɖ old ambl n hobl, tecñ p mats, ptñ dǎn ćîna, lcñ sîdwez in ɖ glas, az f, aftr ol, ś hd hr conṣleśnz, az f indd ɖr twînd abt hr drj sm incoriɉbl hop. Viźnz v jô ɖr mst hv bn at ɖ wośtub, se wɖ hr ćildṛn (yt tū hd bn bes-born n wn hd dzrtd hr), at ɖ publichǎs, drincñ; trnñ ovr scraps in hr drorz. Sm clīvij v ɖ darc ɖr mst hv bn, sm ćanl in ɖ depʈs v obskṛti ʈru ẃć lît inuf iśùd t twist hr fes grinñ in ɖ glas n mc hr, trnñ t hr job agn, mumbl ǎt ɖ old ḿzichōl soñ. Ɖ mistic, ɖ viźnri, wōcñ ɖ bīć on a fîn nît, stŕñ a pudl, lcñ at a ston, ascñ ɖmslvz “Ẃt am I,” “Ẃt z ɖs?” hd sudnli an ansr vǎćseft ɖm: (ɖe cd nt se ẃt it wz) so ɖt ɖe wr worm in ɖ frost n hd cumf̣t in ɖ dezt. Bt Msz McNab cntinyd t drinc n gosip az bfr.


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6

Ɖ Sprñ wɖt a līf t tos, bér n brît lîc a vrjin firs in hr ćastti, scornfl in hr pyṛti, wz leid ǎt on fīldz wîd-aid n woćfl n intîrli cerlis v ẃt wz dn or ʈt bî ɖ bholdrz. [Pru Ramzi, līnñ on hr faɖr’z arm, wz gvn in marij. Ẃt, ppl sd, cd hv bn mor fitñ? N, ɖe add, hǎ bytifl ś lct!]

Az sumr nird, az ɖ īvnñz leñʈnd, ɖr cem t ɖ wecfl, ɖ hopfl, wōcñ ɖ bīć, stŕñ ɖ pūl, imaɉneśnz v ɖ strenjist cnd—v fleś trnd t atmz ẃć drouv bfr ɖ wind, v starz flaśñ in ɖer hārts, v clif, sì, clǎd, n scî bròt prṗsli tgɖr t asmbl ǎtẉdli ɖ scatrd parts v ɖ viźn wɖn. In ɖoz mirrz, ɖ mîndz v men, in ɖoz pūlz v unīzi wōtr, in ẃć clǎdz fr evr trn n śadoz form, drīmz psistd, n it wz impoṣbl t rzist ɖ strenj inṭmeśn ẃć evri gul, flǎr, tri, man n wmn, n ɖ ẃît rʈ itslf sīmd t dcler (bt f qsćnd at wns t wɖdrw) ɖt gd trîumfs, hapinis privelz, ordr rūlz; or t rzist ɖ xtrordnri stiḿḷs t renj hiɖr n ɖiɖr in srć v sm abṣlut gd, sm cristl v intnṣti, rmot fṛm ɖ noun pleźrz n fmiłr virćuz, smʈñ ełn t ɖ prosesz v d’mestic lîf, sngl, hard, brît, lîc a dîmnd in ɖ sand, ẃć wd rendr ɖ pzesr s’kr. Morovr, sofnd n aqiesnt, ɖ sprñ wɖ hr bìz humñ n nats dansñ ʈrù hr clǒc abt hr, veild hr îz, avrtd hr hed, n amñ pasñ śadoz n flîts v smōl ren sīmd t hv tecn upn hr a nolij v ɖ soroz v man-cnd.

[Pru Ramzi daid ɖt sumr in sm ilnis cnctd wɖ ćîldbrʈ, ẃć wz indd a traɉdi, ppl sd, evrʈñ, ɖe sd, hd promist so wel.]

N nǎ in ɖ hīt v sumr ɖ wind snt its spîz abt ɖ hǎs agn. Flîz wov a web in ɖ súni rūmz; wīdz ɖt hd groun clos t ɖ glas in ɖ nît tapt mʈodicli at ɖ windopein. Ẃn darcnis fél, ɖ stroc v ɖ Lîthǎs, ẃć hd leid itslf wɖ sć oʈoṛti upn ɖ carpit in ɖ darcnis, tresñ its patn, cem nǎ in ɖ softer lît v sprñ mixt wɖ mūnlît glîdñ jntli az f it leid its c’res n lingrd stelʈ̇li n lct n cem luvñli agn. Bt in ɖ vri lul v ɖs luvñ c’res, az ɖ loñ stroc lent upn ɖ bed, ɖ roc wz rent asundr; anɖr fold v ɖ śōl lūsnd; ɖr it huñ, n sweid. Ʈru ɖ śort suṃrnîts n ɖ loñ suṃrdez, ẃn ɖ emti rūmz sīmd t mrmr wɖ ɖ ecoz v ɖ fīldz n ɖ hum v flîz, ɖ loñ strīmr wevd jntli, sweid emlisli; ẃl ɖ sún so strîpt n bàrd ɖ rūmz n fild ɖm wɖ yelo hêz ɖt Msz McNab, ẃn ś brouc in n lrćt abt, dustñ, swīpñ, lct lîc a tropicl fiś òrñ its we ʈru sún-lanst wōtrz.

Bt slumbr n slīp ɖo it mt ɖr cem lêtr in ɖ sumr omiṇs sǎndz lîc ɖ meźrd bloz v hamrz duld on flt, ẃć, wɖ ɖer rpitd śocs stl frɖr lūsnd ɖ śōl n cract ɖ tīcups. Nǎ n agn sm glas tncld in ɖ cuḅd az f a jaynt vôs hd śrīct so lǎd in its aġni ɖt tumblrz std insd a cuḅd vîbretd tù. Ɖen agn sîḷns fél; n ɖen, nît aftr nît, n smtmz in plen miḑe ẃn ɖ rozz wr brît n lît trnd on ɖ wōl its śep clirli ɖr sīmd t drop intu ɖs sîḷns, ɖs indifṛns, ɖs integṛti, ɖ ʈud v smʈñ fōlñ.

[A śel xplodd. Twenti or ʈrti yuñ men wr bloun p in Frans, amñ ɖm Andru Ramzi, huz deʈ, mrsif̣li, wz instnteńs.]

At ɖt sīzn ɖoz hu hd gn dǎn t pes ɖ bīć n asc v ɖ sì n scî ẃt mesij ɖe rportd or ẃt viźn ɖe afrmd hd t cnsidr amñ ɖ yźl tocnz v dvîn bǎnti—ɖ súnset on ɖ sì, ɖ palr v dōn, ɖ mūn rîzñ, fiśñbots agnst ɖ mūn, n ćildṛn mcñ mudpîz or pltñ ć uɖr wɖ hanflz v gras, smʈñ ǎt v harṃni wɖ ɖs jcundti n ɖs sreṇti. Ɖr wz ɖ sîḷnt aṗriśn v an aśn-culrd śip fr instns, cm, gn; ɖr wz a prpliś sten upn ɖ bland srfis v ɖ sì az f smʈñ hd bôld n bléd, inviẓbli, bnʈ. Ɖs intruźn intu a sīn calkletd t str ɖ most sblîm rflex́nz n līd t ɖ most cumftbl cncluźnz steid ɖer pesñ. It wz dificlt blandli t oṿlc ɖm; t aboliś ɖer sgnificns in ɖ lanscep; t cntiny, az wn wōct bî ɖ sì, t marvl hǎ byti ǎtsd mirrd byti wɖn.

Dd Nećr supḷmnt ẃt man advanst? Dd ś cmplit ẃt h bgan? Wɖ īql cmplesns ś sw hiz miẓri, hiz mīņis, n hiz torćr. Ɖt drīm, v śẹrñ, cmplitñ, v fîndñ in soḷtyd on ɖ bīć an ansr, wz ɖen bt a rflex́n in a mirr, n ɖ mirr itslf wz bt ɖ srfis glasinis ẃć formz in qiesns ẃn ɖ noblr pǎrz slīp bnʈ? Impeśnt, dsperñ yt loʈ t g (fr byti ofrz hr lurz, hz hr conṣleśnz), t pes ɖ bīć wz impoṣbl; contmpleśn wz unindyṛbl; ɖ mirr wz brocn.

[Mr Carmîcl bròt ǎt a volym v powmz ɖt sprñ, ẃć hd an unxpctd s’xes. Ɖ wor, ppl sd, hd rvîvd ɖer inṭrest in powtri.]


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Nît aftr nît, sumr n wintr, ɖ tormnt v stormz, ɖ arôlîc stilnis v fîn weɖr, hld ɖer cort wɖt inṭfiṛns. Liṣnñ (hd ɖr bn enwn t lisn) fṛm ɖ upr rūmz v ɖ emti hǎs onli jîgantic ceos strīct wɖ lîtnñ cd hv bn hŕd tumḅlñ n tosñ, az ɖ windz n wevz dsportd ɖmslvz lîc ɖ amorf̣s bulcs v l’vayʈnz huz brǎz r pirst bî no lît v rīzn, n mǎntd wn on top v anɖr, n lunjd n plunjd in ɖ darcnis or ɖ dêlît (fr nît n de, munʈ n yir ran śeplisli tgɖr) in idịt gemz, untl it sīmd az f ɖ ynivrs wr baṭlñ n tumḅlñ, in brūt cnfyźn n wontn lust emlisli bî itslf.

In sprñ ɖ gardn ŕnz, caźli fild wɖ wind-bloun plants, wr ge az evr. Vaylits cem n daf̣dilz. Bt ɖ stilnis n ɖ brîtnis v ɖ de wr az strenj az ɖ ceos n tymult v nît, wɖ ɖ triz standñ ɖr, n ɖ flǎrz standñ ɖr, lcñ bfr ɖm, lcñ p, yt bholdñ nʈñ, îlis, n so teṛbl.


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Ʈncñ no harm, fr ɖ faṃli wd nt cm, nvr agn, sm sd, n ɖ hǎs wd b sold at Miclms phps, Msz McNab stūpt n pict a bunć v flǎrz t tec hom wɖ hr. Ś leid ɖm on ɖ tebl ẃl ś dustd. Ś wz fond v flǎrz. It wz a piti t let ɖm west. S’poz ɖ hǎs wr sold (ś std armz acimbo in frunt v ɖ lcñglas) it wd wont siyñ t—it wd. Ɖr it hd std ol ɖz yirz wɖt a soul in it. Ɖ bcs n ʈñz wr moldi, fr, ẃt wɖ ɖ wor n hlp biyñ hard t gt, ɖ hǎs hd nt bn clīnd az ś cd hv wśt. It wz bynd wn prsn’z streñʈ t gt it stret nǎ. Ś wz tù old. Hr legz pend hr. Ol ɖoz bcs nīdd t b leid ǎt on ɖ gras in ɖ sún; ɖr wz plastr fōḷn in ɖ hōl; ɖ renpîp hd bloct ovr ɖ studiwindo n let ɖ wōtr in; ɖ carpit wz ruind qt. Bt ppl śd cm ɖmslvz; ɖe śd hv snt smbdi dǎn t si. Fr ɖr wr cloɖz in ɖ cuḅdz; ɖe hd left cloɖz in ol ɖ bedrūmz. Ẃt wz ś t d wɖ ɖm? Ɖe hd ɖ moʈ in ɖm—Msz Ramzi’z ʈñz. Pur ledi! Ś wd nvr wont ƉM agn. Ś wz ded, ɖe sd; yirz ago, in Lundn. Ɖr wz ɖ old gre clǒc ś wòr garḍnñ (Msz McNab fngrd it). Ś cd si hr, az ś cem p ɖ drîv wɖ ɖ wośñ, stūpñ ovr hr flǎrz (ɖ gardn wz a pitifl sît nǎ, ol run t rayt, n rabits scuṭlñ at y ǎt v ɖ bedz)—ś cd si hr wɖ wn v ɖ ćildṛn bî hr in ɖt gre clǒc. Ɖr wr būts n śuz; n a bruś n com left on ɖ dresñtebl, fr ol ɖ wrld az f ś xpctd t cm bac tmro. (Ś hd daid vri sudn at ɖ end, ɖe sd.) N wns ɖe hd bn cmñ, bt hd pt of cmñ, ẃt wɖ ɖ wor, n travl biyñ so dificlt ɖz dez; ɖe hd nvr cm ol ɖz yirz; jst snt hr muni; bt nvr rout, nvr cem, n xpctd t fînd ʈñz az ɖe hd left ɖm, ā, dir! Ẃ ɖ dresñtebl drorz wr fl v ʈñz (ś pld ɖm opn), hanc̣ćīfs, bits v ribn. Yes, ś cd si Msz Ramzi az ś cem p ɖ drîv wɖ ɖ wośñ.

“Gd īvnñ, Msz McNab,” ś wd se.

Ś hd a pleznt we wɖ hr. Ɖ grlz ol lîct hr. Bt, dir, mni ʈñz hd ćenjd sins ɖen (ś śut ɖ dror); mni faṃliz hd lost ɖer dirist. So ś wz ded; n Mr Andru cild; n Mis Pru ded tù, ɖe sd, wɖ hr frst bebi; bt evrwn hd lost smwn ɖz yirz. Prîsz hd gn p śemf̣li, n dd’nt cm dǎn agn nɖr. Ś cd wel rmembr hr in hr gre clǒc.

“Gd īvnñ, Msz McNab,” ś sd, n tld cc t cīp a plet v milcsūp fr hr—qt ʈt ś wontd it, cariyñ ɖt hevi bascit ol ɖ we p fṛm tǎn. Ś cd si hr nǎ, stūpñ ovr hr flǎrz; n fent n flic̣rñ, lîc a yelo bīm or ɖ srcl at ɖ end v a teḷscop, a ledi in a gre clǒc, stūpñ ovr hr flǎrz, wnt wonḍrñ ovr ɖ bedrūm wōl, p ɖ dresñtebl, acrs ɖ wośstand, az Msz McNab hobld n ambld, dustñ, stretnñ. N cc’s nem nǎ? Mildrid? Marịn?—sm nem lîc ɖt. Ā, ś hd fgotn—ś dd fget ʈñz. Fîri, lîc ol red-herd wimin. Mni a laf ɖe hd hd. Ś wz olwz welcm in ɖ cićn. Ś md ɖm laf, ś dd. Ʈñz wr betr ɖen ɖn nǎ.

Ś said; ɖr wz tù mć wrc fr wn wmn. Ś wagd hr hed ɖs sîd n ɖt. Ɖs hd bn ɖ nrṣri. Ẃ, it wz ol damp in hir; ɖ plastr wz fōlñ. Ẃtvr dd ɖe wont t hañ a bīst’s scul ɖr? gn moldi tù. N rats in ol ɖ atics. Ɖ ren cem in. Bt ɖe nvr snt; nvr cem. Sm v ɖ locs hd gn, so ɖ dorz bañd. Ś dd’nt lîc t b p hir at dusc alon nɖr. It wz tù mć fr wn wmn, tù mć, tù mć. Ś crīct, ś mond. Ś bañd ɖ dor. Ś trnd ɖ ci in ɖ loc, n left ɖ hǎs alon, śut p, loct.


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Ɖ hǎs wz left; ɖ hǎs wz dzrtd. It wz left lîc a śel on a sandhil t fil wɖ drî sōltgrenz nǎ ɖt lîf hd left it. Ɖ loñ nît sīmd t hv set in; ɖ trîf̣lñ erz, niḅlñ, ɖ clami breʈs, fumḅlñ, sīmd t hv trîumft. Ɖ sōspn hd rustd n ɖ mat dceid. Tǒdz hd nozd ɖer we in. Îdli, emlisli, ɖ sweyñ śōl swuñ t n fro. A ʈisl ʈrust itslf btwn ɖ tîlz in ɖ lardr. Ɖ swoloz nstd in ɖ drw̃rūm; ɖ flor wz strùn wɖ strw; ɖ plastr fél in śuvlflz; raftrz wr leid bér; rats carid of ɖs n ɖt t nw bhnd ɖ wensc̣ts. Torṭsśel buṭflîz brst fṛm ɖ criṣlis n patrd ɖer lîf ǎt on ɖ windopein. Popiz sóud ɖmslvz amñ ɖ deliaz; ɖ lōn wevd wɖ loñ gras; jaynt artićocs tǎrd amñ rozz; a frinjd carneśn flǎrd amñ ɖ caḅjz; ẃl ɖ jntl tapñ v a wīd at ɖ windo hd bcm, on wintrz’ nîts, a drumñ fṛm strdi triz n ʈornd brayrz ẃć md ɖ hol rūm grīn in sumr.

Ẃt pǎr cd nǎ privnt ɖ ftiḷti, ɖ insnṣbiḷti v nećr? Msz McNab’z drīm v a ledi, v a ćîld, v a plet v milcsūp? It hd wevrd ovr ɖ wōlz lîc a spot v súnlît n vaniśt. Ś hd loct ɖ dor; ś hd gn. It wz bynd ɖ streñʈ v wn wmn, ś sd. Ɖe nvr snt. Ɖe nvr rout. Ɖr wr ʈñz p ɖr rotñ in ɖ drorz—it wz a śem t līv ɖm so, ś sd. Ɖ ples wz gn t rac n ruin. Onli ɖ Lîthǎs bīm entrd ɖ rūmz fr a momnt, snt its sudn stér ovr bed n wōl in ɖ darcnis v wintr, lct wɖ eqniṃti at ɖ ʈisl n ɖ swolo, ɖ rat n ɖ strw. Nʈñ nǎ wɖstd ɖm; nʈñ sd no t ɖm. Let ɖ wind blo; let ɖ popi sīd itslf n ɖ carneśn mêt wɖ ɖ cabij. Let ɖ swolo bild in ɖ drw̃rūm, n ɖ ʈisl ʈrust asd ɖ tîlz, n ɖ buṭflî sún itslf on ɖ fedd ćins v ɖ armćerz. Let ɖ brocn glas n ɖ ćîna lî ǎt on ɖ lōn n b tangld ovr wɖ gras n wîld bériz.

Fr nǎ hd cm ɖt momnt, ɖt hezteśn ẃn dōn tremblz n nît pōzz, ẃn f a feɖr alît in ɖ scel it wl b weid dǎn. Wn feɖr, n ɖ hǎs, sncñ, fōlñ, wd hv trnd n pićt dǎnwdz t ɖ depʈs v darcnis. In ɖ ruind rūm, picnicrz wd hv lit ɖer cetlz; luvrz sòt śltr ɖr, layñ on ɖ bér bordz; n ɖ śepd stord hiz dinr on ɖ brics, n ɖ tramp slept wɖ hiz cot rnd him t word of ɖ cold. Ɖen ɖ rūf wd hv fōḷn; brayrz n hemlocs wd hv blotd ǎt paʈ, step n windo; wd hv groun, unīqli bt lusṭli ovr ɖ mǎnd, untl sm tresṗsr, luzñ hiz we, cd hv tld onli bî a red-hot pǒcr amñ ɖ netlz, or a scrap v ćîna in ɖ hemlóc, ɖt hir wns smwn hd livd; ɖr hd bn a hǎs.

F ɖ feɖr hd fōḷn, f it hd tipt ɖ scel dǎnwdz, ɖ hol hǎs wd hv plunjd t ɖ depʈs t lî upn ɖ sandz v oblivịn. Bt ɖr wz a fors wrcñ; smʈñ nt hîli conśs; smʈñ ɖt lird, smʈñ ɖt lrćt; smʈñ nt inspîrd t g abt its wrc wɖ digṇfaid rićl or soḷm ćantñ. Msz McNab grond; Msz Bast crīct. Ɖe wr old; ɖe wr stif; ɖer legz ect. Ɖe cem wɖ ɖer brūmz n peilz at last; ɖe got t wrc. Ol v a sudn, wd Msz McNab si ɖt ɖ hǎs wz redi, wn v ɖ yuñ lediz rout: wd ś gt ɖs dn; wd ś gt ɖt dn; ol in a huri. Ɖe mt b cmñ fr ɖ sumr; hd left evrʈñ t ɖ last; xpctd t fînd ʈñz az ɖe hd left ɖm. Slǒli n penf̣li, wɖ brūm n peil, mopñ, scǎrñ, Msz McNab, Msz Bast, steid ɖ c’rupśn n ɖ rot; rescyd fṛm ɖ pūl v Tîm ɖt wz fast clozñ ovr ɖm nǎ a besn, nǎ a cuḅd; fećt p fṛm oblivịn ol ɖ Weṿli novlz n a tīset wn mornñ; in ɖ afṭnun rstord t sún n er a bras fndr n a set v stīl fîraynz. Jorj, Msz Bast’s sun, còt ɖ rats, n cut ɖ gras. Ɖe hd ɖ bildrz. Atndd wɖ ɖ crīcñ v hinjz n ɖ scrīćñ v bolts, ɖ slamñ n baññ v damp-swoḷn wŭdwrc, sm rusti l’borịs brʈ sīmd t b tecñ ples, az ɖ wimin, stūpñ, rîzñ, gronñ, sññ, slapt n slamd, upsterz nǎ, nǎ dǎn in ɖ sélrz. Ǒ, ɖe sd, ɖ wrc!

Ɖe dranc ɖer ti in ɖ bedrūm smtmz, or in ɖ studi; brecñ of wrc at miḑe wɖ ɖ smuj on ɖer fesz, n ɖer old handz claspt n cramt wɖ ɖ brūmhandlz. Flopt on ćerz, ɖe contmpletd nǎ ɖ magnifisnt conqest ovr taps n baʈ; nǎ ɖ mor ardẏs, mor parśl trîumf ovr loñ roz v bcs, blac az revnz wns, nǎ ẃît-stend, brīdñ pel muśrumz n s’critñ frtiv spîdrz. Wns mor, az ś flt ɖ ti worm in hr, ɖ teḷscop fitd itslf t Msz McNab’z îz, n in a rñ v lît ś sw ɖ old jntlmn, līn az a rêc, wagñ hiz hed, az ś cem p wɖ ɖ wośñ, tōcñ t himslf, ś s’pozd, on ɖ lōn. H nvr notist hr. Sm sd h wz ded; sm sd ś wz ded. Ẃć wz it? Msz Bast dd’nt nǒ fr srtn îɖr. Ɖ yuñ jntlmn wz ded. Ɖt ś wz śr. Ś hd réd hiz nem in ɖ peprz.

Ɖr wz ɖ cc nǎ, Mildrid, Marịn, sm sć nem az ɖt—a red-hedd wmn, qc-tmprd lîc ol hr sort, bt cînd, tù, f y ń ɖ we wɖ hr. Mni a laf ɖe hd hd tgɖr. Ś sevd a plet v sūp fr Magi; a bît v ham, smtmz; ẃtvr wz ovr. Ɖe livd wel in ɖoz dez. Ɖe hd evrʈñ ɖe wontd (glibli, jovịli, wɖ ɖ ti hot in hr, ś unwaund hr bōl v meṃriz, sitñ in ɖ wicr armćer bî ɖ nrṣri-fndr). Ɖr wz olwz plenti dwñ, ppl in ɖ hǎs, twenti steyñ smtmz, n wośñ p tl loñ past midnît.

Msz Bast (ś hd nvr noun ɖm; hd livd in Glazgo at ɖt tîm) wundrd, ptñ hr cup dǎn, ẃtvr ɖe huñ ɖt bīst’s scul ɖr fr? Śot in foṛn parts no dǎt.

It mt wel b, sd Msz McNab, wonṭnñ on wɖ hr meṃriz; ɖe hd frendz in īstn cuntriz; jntlṃn steyñ ɖr, lediz in īvnñdres; ś hd sìn ɖm wns ʈru ɖ dînñrūm dor ol sitñ at dinr. Twenti ś derd se ol in ɖer juwlri, n ś asct t ste hlp woś p, mt b tl aftr midnît.

Ā, sd Msz Bast, ɖ’d fînd it ćenjd. Ś lent ǎt v ɖ windo. Ś woćt hr sun Jorj sîɖñ ɖ gras. Ɖe mt wel asc, ẃt hd bn dn t it? siyñ hǎ old Ceṇdi wz s’pozd t hv ćarj v it, n ɖen hiz leg got so bad aftr h fél fṛm ɖ cart; n phps ɖen nwn fr a yir, or ɖ betr part v wn; n ɖen Devi Mcdoṇld, n sīdz mt b snt, bt hu śd se f ɖe wr evr plantd? Ɖ’d fînd it ćenjd.

Ś woćt hr sun sîɖñ. H wz a gret wn fr wrc—wn v ɖoz qayt wnz. Wel ɖe mst b gtñ alñ wɖ ɖ cuḅdz, ś s’pozd. Ɖe hōld ɖmslvz p.

At last, aftr dez v lebr wɖn, v cutñ n digñ wɖt, dustrz wr flict fṛm ɖ windoz, ɖ windoz wr śut t, ciz wr trnd ol ovr ɖ hǎs; ɖ frunt dor wz bañd; it wz finiśt.

N nǎ az f ɖ clīnñ n ɖ scrubñ n ɖ sîɖñ n ɖ mowñ hd drǎnd it ɖr rouz ɖt haf-hŕd meḷdi, ɖt inṭmitnt ḿzic ẃć ɖ ir haf caćz bt lets fōl; a barc, a blīt; ireğlr, inṭmitnt, yt smhǎ rletd; ɖ hum v an insect, ɖ tremr v cut gras, dșevrd yt smhǎ b’loññ; ɖ jar v a dorbītl, ɖ sqīc v a ẃīl, lǎd, lo, bt mistirịsli rletd; ẃć ɖ ir strenz t brñ tgɖr n z olwz on ɖ vrj v harṃnîzñ, bt ɖe r nvr qt hŕd, nvr fŭli harṃnîzd, n at last, in ɖ īvnñ, wn aftr anɖr ɖ sǎndz dî ǎt, n ɖ harṃni fōltrz, n sîḷns fōlz. Wɖ ɖ súnset śarpnis wz lost, n lîc mist rîzñ, qayt rouz, qayt spred, ɖ wind setld; lūsli ɖ wrld śc itslf dǎn t slīp, darcli hir wɖt a lît t it, sev ẃt cem grīn s’fyzd ʈru līvz, or pel on ɖ ẃît flǎrz in ɖ bed bî ɖ windo.

[Lili Brisco hd hr bag carid p t ɖ hǎs lêt wn īvnñ in Sptmbr. Mr Carmîcl cem bî ɖ sem tren.]


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Ɖen indd pīs hd cm. Meṣjz v pīs briɖd fṛm ɖ sì t ɖ śor. Nvr t brec its slīp eni mor, t lul it rɖr mor dīpli t rest, n ẃtvr ɖ drīmrz dremt hoḷli, dremt wîzli, t cnfrm—ẃt els wz it mrṃrñ—az Lili Brisco leid hr hed on ɖ pilo in ɖ clīn stil rūm n hŕd ɖ sì. Ʈru ɖ opn windo ɖ vôs v ɖ byti v ɖ wrld cem mrṃrñ, tù softli t hír xacli ẃt it sd—bt ẃt matrd f ɖ mīnñ wr plen? intritñ ɖ slīprz (ɖ hǎs wz fl agn; Msz Becwiɖ wz steyñ ɖr, olso Mr Carmîcl), f ɖe wd nt acćli cm dǎn t ɖ bīć itslf at līst t lift ɖ blînd n lc ǎt. Ɖe wd si ɖen nît flowñ dǎn in prpl; hiz hed crǎnd; hiz septr juwld; n hǎ in hiz îz a ćîld mt lc. N f ɖe stl fōltrd (Lili wz tîrd ǎt wɖ traṿlñ n slept olmst at wns; bt Mr Carmîcl réd a bc bî candļît), f ɖe stl sd no, ɖt it wz vepr, ɖs splendr v hiz, n ɖ dȳ hd mor pǎr ɖn h, n ɖe prifŕd slīpñ; jntli ɖen wɖt cmplent, or arğmnt, ɖ vôs wd sñ its soñ. Jntli ɖ wevz wd brec (Lili hŕd ɖm in hr slīp); tndrli ɖ lît fél (it sīmd t cm ʈru hr îlidz). N it ol lct, Mr Carmîcl ʈt, śutñ hiz bc, fōlñ aslip, mć az it yst t lc.

Indd ɖ vôs mt rzym, az ɖ crtnz v darc rápt ɖmslvz ovr ɖ hǎs, ovr Msz Becwiɖ, Mr Carmîcl, n Lili Brisco so ɖt ɖe le wɖ sevṛl foldz v blacnis on ɖer îz, ẃ nt axpt ɖs, b cntnt wɖ ɖs, aqies n rzîn? Ɖ sai v ol ɖ sìz brecñ in meźr rnd ɖ îlz suɖd ɖm; ɖ nît rápt ɖm; nʈñ brouc ɖer slīp, untl, ɖ brdz bginñ n ɖ dōn wīvñ ɖer ʈin vôsz intu its ẃîtnis, a cart grîndñ, a dog smẃr barcñ, ɖ sún liftd ɖ crtnz, brouc ɖ veil on ɖer îz, n Lili Brisco stŕñ in hr slīp. Ś clućt at hr blancits az a fōlr clućz at ɖ trf on ɖ éj v a clif. Hr îz opnd wîd. Hir ś wz agn, ś ʈt, sitñ bold uprît in bed. Awec.


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