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“For a long job like this, chloroform Anthony's outer attention was fixed is much more satisfactory," said the upon Laurence's needs, but his inner anesthetist. "However, we can start faculties concentrated to encounter this with a mixture and see how she stands new element. As he did so, he discovit.”

ered that the whole force of his cenThe amazing vision of Kitty broke tered will was useless. Hilton Lauroff their conversation. She had never ence and his unrivaled skill, the aneslooked prettier in her life. The long, thetist and his intent watchfulness, blue gown, the butterfly cap, the deli- were nothing against this unseen powcately reddened lips, brought out the er; they were blown before it like leaves intensity of her great, dark eyes, alive in a wind. with spirit and laughter. She wrinkled In a moment of terrible despair Anup her nose as she entered.

thony felt himself fung back and beat"You poor old things! How hot you en before the battle had begun. The have made it for yourselves!” she said. unseen force had swept them all aside "I shall be the only comfortable person and broken its way into the life of in the room.”

Kitty. There was a moment of susShe shook hands with Laurence and pense, and then as quickly as his dethe anesthetist, and with a quick move- spair there shot into Anthony's brain ment sprang sidewise to the table, an amazing and sharp relief. swinging her feet toward the floor.

He knew in a flash that this power You did n't think I could do that was not an enemy. It was true it tore with one arm in a sling, did you?" she to pieces the husk of the beloved life, asked gaily. "That 's the advantage of but mercy was at the root of the debeing light.”

struction. It was tearing her to pieces Her breathing came as swiftly and because the pieces were in the way, life easily as a child's. Anthony stood on itself was in the way of Kitty; and Anone side of her, his hand on her wrist, thony became aware that what he and the anesthetist on the other. thought was his enemy was an immense

Her eyes smiled across the table at reinforcement. Hilton Laurence, and then closed. She Once more he centered his will in the opened them as the anesthetist, satisfied struggle, but he went with the stream by his examination, began to give her now and no longer threw his impotence his last directions in soothing profes- against it. sional tones. Her lips curved in a faint He alone was aware of the unseen mocking smile. She looked away from power, but he saw the others moving at him to Anthony; behind the laughter in its bidding. her eyes was a sudden gleam of reas- Anthony knew what had happened to surance. It was as if her spirit gath- Kitty before the eyes of the anesthetist ered itself up together and called to had caught the sudden change.

He him not for help, but to give him help. leaned forward and said quietly,-he She had never said in words that she heard the words slip out into the room loved him, but her eyes said it now, without effort or excitement, -"She 's definitely, completely, without waver- gone." ing. Then they closed finally and did Hilton Laurence, bending over a sevnot open again.

ered vein, said: "She 's off like a bird," said the anes- “Nonsense! my dear chap, keep your thetist, with satisfaction.

head! She 's as right as rain.” But he Hilton Laurence reappeared from be- looked up sharply as the anesthetist hind a screen ready to begin his task. cried : No one spoke for a time.

“By Jove! he's right! She's gone!" Then Anthony became aware that Anthony stood by them curiously unthere was another presence in the room. concerned, while Laurence and the anesIt was the same power he had fought thetist tried one after the other their the night before.

useless remedies. He obeyed their flung It filled the room with a strange, pre- directions automatically, threw open the liminary tension before it began to act. window, drew out the oxygen-cylinder,

and filled it; but there was no flicker of took. She do look just as she did, poor a response.

lamb, when she was a little girl, sir. He had prepared everything. Noth- One could n't, if I may say so, take her ing had been forgotten or overlooked, naughtiness to heart, and I can't go for and all the time they used their inef- to believe the good Lord will be any fectual, puny efforts over Kitty's little harder." broken body, Anthony felt his heart Then Peckham left him. singing within him. They could not He was alone now with his wife. She set back the clock. Kitty had escaped was broken like a toy by the hand of them. She was no longer there.

science to which he had entrusted her. Swiftly, simply as the lift of a gull's All his desires were frustrated and his wing, she had flown, and not for any- endeavors destroyed. He had not even thing in all the world would Anthony saved Kitty. Something else had interhave recalled her.

vened to save her. Anthony was not After a time Hilton Laurence turned aware of this power now; the unresponaway from the table.

siveness of death closed down on him. "I'm awfully sorry, old boy," he said His eyes fixed themselves on Kitty's, defensively. "You see for yourself, little lace cap made in the shape of don't you; it 's no damned good ?butterflies, and this last futility broke

“I 'm sure I don't understand it," his heart. said the anesthetist more defensively still. “I took every precaution. I 've

CHAPTER XXIX never had a case slip like that before. It 's most disconcerting. I need n't say, GRIEF slows all the processes of time. Arden, I 'm most terribly sorry." To Anthony it might have been weeks

They stood looking at Anthony like that he had been alone with silence in school-boys detected in crime by the Kitty's empty room, and yet it was only head-master. Anthony turned away his two hours before Henry, calling to inface, so that they could not see the quire for Kitty, became aware of what triumph in his eyes.

had taken place. “Of course you did everything,” he Henry was aghast to discover that said reassuringly, "everything you nothing had been done. Anthony, could. I am perfectly satisfied that though a doctor, had ignored the urgennothing could have saved her. The cies of death. lungs were not working properly, and Peckham, who had made tea twice, the heart could n't carry on. It was al- but never even knocked at Kitty's door, ways a risk, but I feel we were justified had received no instructions. Anthony in trying it."

remained for two hours, "apparently," "More than justified,” said Laurence as Henry said to himself, "brooding." in a relieved tone. “In my opinion it Henry always considered time spent would have been criminal not to have upon thought as “brooding," unless it tried. I am most thankful, my dear was accompanied by paper, a writingboy, you can see it all so sanely." table, and ink; then it became thinking.

"I think I'll carry her back into her When Anthony came down-stairs, room now,” said Anthony, uncertainly. Henry was surprised to observe no out

The two men stood aside to let him ward change in him. He bore none of pass with his light burden.

the marks of grief, and he was disinPeckham was standing by the bed in clined to speak in a hushed voice. Kitty's room. He laid her down with- Henry came forward with an out out speaking, and looked across at Peck- stretched hand. ham.

“My dear fellow," he said in a low "She 's all right,” he said gently; tone, “I am shocked and distressed be“more all right now than we could ever yond words." have made her, Peckham.”

Of course Henry was not distressed Peckham bowed her head.

beyond words. Words did very nicely “Yes, sir,” she murmured, between for him. He was, as a matter of fact, her sobs. "I felt she was going to be intensely relieved.

Providence had acted, as it could only look in and help later. I want to go out occasionally be relied upon to act, with for a walk." considerable tact and promptitude.

“People will expect to hear from you Perhaps the promptitude was a little direct,” suggested Henry, who did not overdone; six weeks later, considering think that widowers should go for the date of the marriage, would have walks before the funeral. been less startling and no less con- “Sign my name, do anything you venient. But Henry was prepared to like," said Anthony, hastily. “She had overlook this slight lapse of taste on the n't any wishes. Will you see Costrelle part of the higher powers in view of for me? Don't interrupt his bridge; the fact that they had carried out his he plays between five and sevenmain intention. They had got rid of thirty.” Kitty.

"On an occasion like this,” said Henry was not, however, in the least Henry, severely. He was going to give prepared for Anthony's saying in an up his own bridge. off-hand tone:

“Yes, yes, I know," said Anthony, “Yes, I suppose it was the best possi- hurriedly; “but Costrelle does n't think ble thing, really," quite as if he were in occasions; he won't like being interanswering Henry's thoughts and not rupted. It 's awfully good of you, my his words. Henry was sorry for Kitty. dear old chap, to do these things for me. He had been charmed by her, and he I think-I think I must get out.” was readily sorry for those who were "There will be questions which you capable of charming him; but the fact alone can decide," said Henry. “When remained that Kitty was not respecta- shall I expect you back ?ble and that all Ardens married re- Anthony looked for the first time as spectable women. Now that Kitty was if he was a little changed. He fumbled dead, he thought it would have been perceptibly for an answer. better taste on Anthony's part not to “I don't know what time it is now,” refer to her disabilities. To admit he said jerkily, and without waiting for death as a solution was, Henry felt, a Henry to tell him he walked out into direct slur upon Kitty.

the hall, shutting the door after him. "Let 's have something to eat," An- The day had grown unexpectedly thony unexpectedly suggested. “Peck- mild and sunny. Anthony walked listham, have you got some tea hot for us?lessly and without any definite direc

“Yes, sir,” said Peckham, fluttering, tion. He wanted to get to some open but justified. “It 's in the dining-room space where people would cease to pour now, sir, and an egg, if you could past him like part of a great procession. face it."

He found himself at last by the river. "I 'll eat anything you 've got,” said The light lay faint and thin over its Anthony, with conviction. He did not

gray waters, gleaming with a pale, even have to be tempted.

transparent silver upon the distant Henry felt a little bitterly how much towers of Westminster. The huddled more devastating grief would have been low waterside houses looked full of the to him. He had had his lunch two stubborn comfort and unconsciousness hours earlier, and he did not want tea of England. Westminster brooded high now, though Kitty had only been his and bright above a flock of little, ugly sister-in-law.

dwelling-places. There was no back“I thought perhaps," he said gravely, ground to the ancient river but the "I might be of use to you, my dear fel- smoke from factory chimneys and the low. There are certain things—”. low, dim sky.

"Yes, I know," interrupted Anthony, Anthony was not aware of his grief, who was standing to eat his food in a but he was aware of a great desire, a thoroughly uncomfortable, restless way compulsion of his inner being, to get by the door. “There are heaps of things away from all pity and arrangements. -telegrams, undertakers, the registrar. He wanted to place between himself I'd be awfully obliged if you 'd do them and Kitty's death a host of less imme for me.

Hilton Laurence said he 'd diate objects.

The towers of Westminster rested dark. He was not that sane man now, him, the rocking motion of the motor- with his iron-like securities. He had busses, passing like broad-sided ships lost the rapier-like decision of the undown the stream of the open thorough- broken. His mind saw many issues, his fares, lulled him. The slow pressure of

will flickered at a choice of opporthe river upon its unhurrying journey tunities; a long day's work unstrung to the sea placed a merciful image be- him like a delicate girl. His memory tween his thoughts and Kitty.

was uncertain, his clean slate was Time stood still. The hours hung on written across with undecipherable, lost Anthony heavily with the weight of activities. He was not sure of anything years.

at all. As he leaned over the bridge and And his love, that reserved and watched the long, slow ripples pass his whole-hearted quality on which Anthony thoughts unnumbered, he felt eternity. meant to found a home, had been called The sun sank into the misty west; there out and wasted on a light woman, was a faint deepening of color and light happily dead. Destiny had applauded along the Embankment. Five white him for his equipment and destroyed it. swans rose on massive wings high above And yet he was aware, sitting there Battersea Bridge; they slipped dazzling in the dark and cold, with his weakacross a path of light into the darkening nesses and his great grief, that he sky, taking the day with them.

would not for anything in the world be Twilight slipped gray and blue in the old Anthony, secure and hidebound, long lanes between the shadowy houses; moving with blind assurance among the lights at the street corners had infinite things. The old Anthony had misty haloes round them, like a cloud- been a master of material facts; he had encircled opal moon.

not been a servant of reality. Broken Anthony became aware of an over- and twisted and sore, unsure of his whelming physical fatigue; it was so aims, diffident of his remaining powers, intense that, despite the chill of the Anthony knew that there was nothing falling night, he sank with relief on to in him that reserved itself for its own one of the benches. It was empty, for purposes. it was too early for the prowlers of the He could meet all that came with his night to seek their rest there, and too naked new possession. The old Anthony late for the belated children playing had given his faculties only to his work; their last games.

he himself remained aloof, fastidious, Anthony could no longer see the river, and unused. He had been imprisoned but he was aware of it moving quietly in a fortress of privilege. beside him in the dark. It seemed to An unseen hand had plucked him out help his mind to turn slowly and with- of it, and plunged him into a fetout pain back to the thought of Kitty. tered, dreadful intimacy with miserable He thought what a wonderful and easy human beings, so that he should learn chance his life would afford a cynic for the reality of pain. Pain had taught laughter. Only a few years ago his Anthony his own insignificance and career had been so shapely and definite broken a little of his isolation away a fact. He knew what he meant to do, from him. Anthony had given more of and he had the means and the ability himself that he knew to his fellowwith which to do it. He was as sure of prisoners, but he had not given all. His his surgical powers and his unshakable sympathies were touched and widened, nerve as of the continuity of bread but his heart remained intact. He upon his table. He had no bad habits, could still blame men for their weakno overmastering temptations. His life nesses. was a clear and steadfast plan, and in He thought of his return to England, due time, with substantial success be- and how its beauty and serenity had rehind him and ripened ambition for the built him. But he was not the same future, he meant to seek and find a again; there was more that was accesfitting mate.

sible in him, or he would never have He laughed out suddenly into the known Kitty.

She would have been to him either membered with a pang of shame how what she intended to be, a few weeks' easily and quickly she had let him off amusement, or perhaps merely a fresh his own rigidities. peg upon which to hang his measured He had felt his rigidity was his morality. It would have been so easy strength. Even now he was aware of for the old Anthony to have dispensed the loss of it, with a certain sense of with Kitty. But his new responsive- formidable exposure; but he was no ness to pain had saved him from this longer afraid of the exposure. ignoble security. Her need had called He did not want to get out of any. to him, and his whole being had rushed thing until he had taken with him the out to answer it.

comradeship of what was in it. Kitty had taken from him one by one Kitty's little, narrow life was like the his old immunities. She had shaken foam of a wave. It had been lived for him with a passion so vivid that he saw pleasure; and, miscarried by the wind, his code as a little thing, and she had had broken itself against the iron rocks roused in him a tenderness that was of life. stronger than any self-control. She Anthony's wider being was like the had not done these things of a set pur- force and purpose of the waters bepose; she had no purposes.

She was

neath; but for a moment the powerless one of the instruments of life.

foam had lit it onward and enlightened She could not give him the complete- its purposes. ness of love because love's completeness Kitty had not changed the direction had been defaced in her, but out of the of Anthony's life, but she had changed shattered gifts and images of their the angle of his vision. She had told hours together she had left him one him that she was only an atom of dust changeless memory: Kitty had never dancing in a sunbeam, and that when blamed or judged a human soul.

the light went, there would be nothing From her father to the vicar's wife left of her but dust. It seemed to she absolved them all. All women were Anthony that it was the dust that had her natural enemies before their faces, gone, and left him with the memory of but behind their backs she was their light. indignant advocate.

She could even A cold, wet wind rose from the river, stand up for the self-righteous with a cutting against his weariness. He whimsical admiration. Anthony re- rose, and set his face toward home.




Have I not loved you? I had lived

So many years before you came
That, waiting, watching, dreaming so,

I knew your soul before your name.

Each night your heart against my own

Beat like the runner's in the race;
Each day I said, “If we should meet!”

I knew your soul, but not your face.

And then we did meet, and at once

My soul cried out that it was you:
My soul leapt up into my eyes;

Your soul was in your eyes. I knew!

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