"Where's Harry?" Vennal asked."What'll Handshut think it?""I dunno." 快乐飞艇开奖结果历史记录 The two young men stared at each other, then George Fleet nodded to them:Chapter 18"You needn't look so frightened. I'm only saying it. It w?an't m?ake no difference—unless you want it to.""How—how d'you know I'm miserable?""And well you may be," said Rose, "you've torn my gown.""You can keep out then." ... And he was gone—walking past the window in a top-hat."Very well—I will. But it's funny I should want to."Another habit of his, less alarming, but far more annoying, was to repeat some chance word or sentence[Pg 194] over and over again for hours. If his mother said "Take these plates into the kitchen, Harry," he would spend the rest of the day murmuring, "Take these plates into the kitchen, Harry," till those about him were driven nearly as mad as he.Meantime it was soothing to contemplate the result of his efforts. After all, his own striving had done more for him than any slackness or grass-fed contentment on the part of Grandturzel. His greatest achievement was the paying off of his mortgage, which he managed in the spring of '79. Now he could once more begin saving money to buy another piece of Boarzell. There was something both novel and exhilarating about this return to old ways. It was over ten years since he had bought any land, but now were renewed all the ticklish delights of calculation, all the plannings and layings-out, all the contrivances and scrapings and wrestlings. Thursday broke clear and windy—little curls of cloud flew high against spreads of watery blue, and the wind raced over Boarzell, smelling of wet furrows. As usual[Pg 163] everyone at Odiam was going to the Fair—even Mrs. Backfield, for Reuben said that he would not let the girls go without her. Caro and Tilly were now fifteen and sixteen, and their father began to have fears lest they should marry and leave him. Tilly especially, with her creamy complexion like Naomi's, and her little tip-tilted nose, freckled over the bridge, gave him anxious times. He sternly discouraged any of the neighbouring farmers' sons who seemed inclined to call; he was not going to lose his daughters just when Mrs. Backfield's poor health made them indispensable. It could not be long before his mother died—already her bouts of rheumatism were so severe that she was practically crippled each winter—and when she died Tilly and Caro must take her place.One thing he noticed, and that was that the housework was always done for him by his mother as if there were no sickness to fill her time. Always when he came home of an evening, his supper was waiting for him, hot and savoury. He breakfasted whenever he had a mind, and there were slices of cold pie or dabs of bread and meat for him to take out and eat as he worked—he had no time to come home to dinner now. Really his mother was tumbling to things wonderfully well—she looked a little tired sometimes, it is true, and the lines of her face were growing thinner, but she was saving him seven shillings a month and the girl's food; and all that money and food was feeding the hungry earth."There—I knew as there wur reason in you, Pete. You w?an't go and leave your f?ather lik the rest, all fur a hemmed Methody.""My land," murmured old Reuben, drinking in the breeze of it. "My land—more to me than Alice." Then with a sudden fierceness: "Where is she?""Robby ... I love you ... I love you so!""F?ather, it wur an accident."The Squire's party was much the weakest in numbers,[Pg 9] but luck had given it the best weapons of that chance armament. Alce of Ellenwhorne had a fine knobbed stick, worth a dozen of the enemy's, while Lewnes of Coldblow had an excellent broken bottle. Young Elphee had been through the bruiser-mill, and routed his assailants with successive upper-cuts. The anti-Bardonites, on the other hand, were inclined to waste their strength; they fought in a congested, rabblesome way; also they threw their bottles, not realising that a bottle is much better as a club than a missile. The result was that quite early in the conflict their ammunition gave out, and they were reduced to sticks and fists."I hate that Ben of yours!""No." 快乐飞艇开奖结果历史记录 "Well, that's very nice—I don't always want to go somewhere every time I take a walk, I much prefer just wandering."Wander all the proud and dead—"Git up!" cried Backfield, colouring with annoyance. "I have not, young man.""Naun—I'm thinking.""Oh, what is it?—what is it?" wailed Naomi—"can't we do anything? Oh, why doesn't the doctor come?" "I—I—the hay seemed right enough."He went out and did a little work, but after an hour or so flung down the chicken-coop he was making, and rushed into the house. His usual question received its usual answer. He thought the doctor a hemmed fraud and the doctor thought him a damned fool.She stood hesitating on the doorstep. Should she knock? Then a terrible thought struck her. Reuben must have meant to lock her out. Otherwise he would have sat up for her, however late she had been. She started trembling all over, and felt her skin grow damp."Who fill their pockets at Scott's Float, "Have you looked in the new field?"It was not long before he had overtures from Captain MacKinnon. The Captain had expected an easy triumph; never since it became a free borough had Rye sent a Tory to Parliament. Now he was surprised and a little alarmed to see signs of definite Tory enterprise, banded under one of the most important and successful farmers in the district. It is true that he had the Bardons on his side, but the Bardons were too gentlemanly to be useful. He would have given much to corrupt Reuben, but Flightshot, which held the only bribe that could have made him so much as turn his head, insisted on keeping pure. He tried to hold his own by appealing to the fishermen and sailors against the agriculturists—but as these in the past had made little fortunes by smuggling grain, they joined the farmers in demanding a wheat-tax."And where are they now?" 快乐飞艇开奖结果历史记录 They parted uneasily, without any arrangement to meet again.There was also another depressing factor. As he felt his end approaching Albert began to develop a conscience[Pg 366] and remorse. He said he had wasted his life, and as time wore on and he became weaker he passed from the general to the particular. The memory of certain sins tormented him, and he used Pete as his confessor.Of course the neighbourhood gloated; and the rustic convention was set aside in Rose's favour, and all the shame of her elopement heaped on Reuben. "You said I wur a hard man."The doctor, however, did not look pleased."Oh, ?un't there!""Vale!"