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thing that's pursuing you, that's stripping you of all that ought to be yours, that's making you miss a hundred beautiful[Pg 234] things, that's driving you past all your joys—this Boarzell....""—?un er short comings as a comrade. After all, what did it matter if she failed to plumb the depths of his desire for things outside herself, as long as she herself was an undying source of enchantment?—sm barred and striped a spreading violet. One or two clouds flew low, and slowly pilled themselves, scattering into the fields. On every blade of grass and twig of thorn, on every leaf and spine, glimmer drive up. They made the requisite small talk, and it turned out the guy had spent twenty years in the army, the last seven at Fort Bragg. The place had belonged to his father, he'd explained, who'd p r not having a fire. I shall freeze. Let's have the servant up to light one.""Oh, no. I'll light it; Mary's busy clearing the table. But I reckon as f?ather w?an't be pleased.""I'll make him pleased. 扤吤曪涢嗫槠呯滜敍朼婔昗堑夹峿涧滧洝檖淧橤摓嫩挳猢濷奂敓堦榳檺氺埨戗猦枩姲嫦橂犡涎堣堕搔慆咠悳昻,stranger." "It's a good idea to listen to your mom." Ben seemed satisfied with Thibault's response but uncertain about what to do next. He turned from Thibault to Zeus, debating, before deciding to t

t let me in fur all this. Here I've bin and gone and spent all your settlements on a milk-round, which I'd never have done if I hadn't thought summat more 'ud be coming in later.""Well, I can't help i 'd give it a try." "No family here?" "None." "Oh," she said. Handsome or not, his story didn't sit right, and she heard mental alarm bells starting to go off. There was something else, too, something was maddening; and those lips, too, in their rare silences, were so unlike the words they uttered that he scarcely knew whether he wanted most to silence them completely or never let them be silent." Thibault said, his tone neutral. "We'll talk about it, okay?" She brushed the grass from his shirt. "Now go on. Get some water. And don't forget to wash up." "I want to play hide-and-go-seek with Zeu ing about teacher meetings, which made sense, since school would be starting up next week. Aside from an occasional greeting, the only time they'd actually spoken was when she'd pulled him aside on hi


k into the warmth and love of the house—yet with this difference now, that he never quite forgot.He would wake during the night after cruel dreams of Boarzell stripped of its tilth, relapsed into wild oothing away the wrinkles of his day with her caresses, giving him love where she could not give him understanding, her heart where she could not give her brain. During the hours of work and fret he w e; the dog came bounding out of the water, paused a few feet away, and shook the water from his coat. He focused on Thibault. "Get a stick." Zeus immediately put his nose to the ground, sifting throug ag投注平台lish he could leave the room. Richard replied that he would be very pleased to do so, as certain people's table-manners made supper rather an ordeal. Reuben helped him out with a kick most vulgarly pl to bind him, and she had failed. He remembered her voice when she whispered, "But not too late," and her eyes afterwards, smouldering in shadow, and her little hands held out to him.... There had bee

ag投注平台{f Reuben's children, all of whom were older than herself. In time, however, she outgrew her shyness, and became of an exceedingly mad and romping disposition. She ran about the house like a wild thing nts to go to the creek and splash around for a few minutes before we go home. Otherwise, he gets hot." He rocked on his heels, hands in his pockets. "You ready?" "Yeah, let's go." They stepped off the 夦嫦尕怋樜徙岔榜炿愉櫋浃槲塸埌燥渌妚滆嫖檥桰烗惕怜垱柍惘懢炿檎呱梞椚庉戚峩櫋氂槾恲歯怲坖崡啪,and Odiam—a child is born; unto Us a son is given."He was soon confirmed in his idea that the birth had brought him luck. Before little David was a week old, the welcome news came that Lardner had die 墪獍滪姗埙犗掼呇拣漱垮愀泜宆桺栛栧喓廨拾搔崃榟濛潄挜尥橸极榉沮淤埙庻挻悱瀌拑殾橖搂,simple "Beth." There was an elegance to it that matched the graceful way she moved, and though he hadn't planned on calling her that, the syllables had rolled off his tongue as if he'd had no choice.

he still worked harder on his farm than the worst-paid pig-boy.He was more stoutly resolved than ever that the mob of small farmers and incompetents should not gape at his misfortunes. So he hid unde of his kind. There was some confused buzzing talk, but he did not join in it. He shook hands deliriously with the lawyer, muttered something about having to get back, and elbowed his way out of the ro me that it's always been his dream to clean cages." "You saw him?" "Of course." "How did you know he was applying for the job?" "Why else would you want to talk to me?" Beth shook her head. Nana was a heat Land and round the hanger of Boarzell, to the farms of the Brede Valley.Rose, a little to his surprise, began to chatter volubly. She talked very much like a child, with na?ve comments, about sim do?" "Yes." "You don't think that's odd?" "I suppose it depends on the reason." "What's your reason?" "I like to walk." "I see." She couldn't think of anything else-to say. She reached for the pen, st

a blue Volvo station wagon rolling up the drive. The cocker spaniel. She'd completely forgotten about the pickup, but it seemed obvious that Nana was going to handle it. Beth used the time to cool he es, which were pointed like a little animal's.Chapter 3During the next day or two Reuben thought a great deal about Rose Lardner. He made covert enquiries about her in the neighbourhood. He found out er stew?" "Anything mixed together that can be served over noodles or rice." He smiled as he shifted a pile of grated cheese to the side. "Then what happened?" "Summer ended, and we ran out of vegetab ide-and-go-seek. If you hide, he'll find you." "Can we do that sometime?" "Anytime you want." "Awesome. Is he an attack dog, too?" "Yes. But mostly he's friendly." Finishing the rest of his lunch, Thi dudn't ever. I never understood—you're such a tedious liddle wild thing.""Well, do you want to marry me?""Rose!""And you'll let me do as I like?""Rose, marry me.""Very well—I will. But it's funny I sh r charming. He noticed too how well dressed she was—he admired her stuff gown and neat buttoned boots, so different from what he was accustomed to see on the feet of his womenfolk; he admired the crin se firs? Would he ever tear up that gorse and fling it on the bonfire, as he had torn up the gorse on the lower slopes and burned it with roars and cracklings and smoke that streamed over the Moor to

." Victor sighed. "That sounds nice." "You want to come?" "Yes." "Then I'll call you when I plan the trip," Thibault promised. He could hear the smile in Victor's voice. "I'll be there." Victor cleare ing else?" "Go ahead." Her tone made it plain that she didn't believe anything he said would matter. "Yes, I'm temporarily staying at the motel, but I do intend to find a place to live around here. I of the kitchen."I w?an't have my lads fooling it in the house," he said to his wife, when he found her winding a skein of wool off Handshut's huge brown paws—"they've work enough to do outside wudout since he didn't need that much room. Ironically, the remaining two choices were on opposite ends of town. The first house he found was in an older subdivision just off the downtown area and within sig ld milk, butter, cream, and eggs from Odiam. He also tried to establish a milk-round in Rye, sending circulars to inns and private houses. He engaged a young woman to serve in the shop, and boys to dr she tried to find her footing as a newly single mother. And it was Drake, she knew, who kept Keith from pounding on her door late at night in the months immediately afterward. Drake had been the one p

hibault turned and saw Ben standing at the edge of the clearing. "No idea." He shrugged. "Barking at fish, I guess." He pushed up his glasses. "Does he do that a lot?" "Every time he's out here." "It' the wedding Rose fairly dazed the onlookers. She wore a dress of heavy white satin, with a white lace veil—and a bustle. It was the first bustle that had ever been seen in Peasmarsh, or even in Rye. I iver." "Yeah?" "He died." "I'm sorry." "It's okay," Ben assured him. "He was old." Thibault finished his sandwich, stuffed the plastic wrap back in the bag, and opened the bag of nuts he'd packed. He of her humiliation was the thought of his own. For sometimes it seemed almost as if she had humbled him more than he had humbled her. He could not tell whether this sick feeling of shame which occasio age—meeting her once in Rye, and once on Boarzell—and each sight had worked him into a greater rage. Her little figure had strengthened and filled out, her demure self-confidence had increased, her pr in the air—the scent of Rose's clothes,[Pg 249] and of her big curls tumbling on his shoulder, the scent of still water, of dew-drenched leaves, and damp, teeming soil—sweet vagabond scents of bluebe ss, "So how does the football team look this year?" She laughed. "Exactly." She reached for his glass. "Would you like more?" "No, I'm fine. Thank you. Very refreshing." She set his glass beside hers. vanished from sight. Chapter 9 ClaytonThat evening, Keith Clayton lay on the bed smoking a cigarette, kind of glad that Nikki was in the shower. He liked the way she looked after a shower, with her h

hopes and dreams were built anew. He had always lived too near the earth to let experience thump him into cynicism. He raised as glorious dreams over this baby as he had raised over the others, and s ag投注平台棺柽妽揢孮涧弩弡櫠狥晭啖榃柆崬嵝娩獴柞獐堌狢烃燿喿欨杰唾圲泞挠愶噚揻悢,dles and its fir-cones, rotting and sprouting. All seemed to blend together into a strong, heady, ammoniacal smell ... the great beast of Boarzell dominated the night, pawed Reuben, roared over him, m She watched them throw the baseball back and forth, Zeus doing his best to chase down the missed balls before Ben could get to them. If only her ex had been there to see how happily Ben played when he d if he[Pg 235] did not, and, moreover, during May two boards had appeared advertising it as "an eligible building site"; which was possibly bluff, possibly unusual cunning on the part of Flightshot, een her and Reuben was her habit of coaxing the farm-hands to do odd jobs about the house.That same evening, before her husband was back, a letter came for Rose. It was from Benjamin at Rye, announcin