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Adam Bede by George Eliot

And it got stronger and stronger


She

paused, and then spoke hurriedly in a louder, pleading tone.

"But I thought perhaps it wouldn't die--there might somebody find it. I didn't kill it--I didn't kill it myself. I put it down there and covered it up, and when I came back it was gone....It was because I was so very miserable, Dinah...I didn't know where to go...and I tried to kill myself before, and I couldn't. Oh, I tried so to drown myself in the pool, and I couldn't. I went to Windsor--I ran away--did you know? I went to find him, as he might take care of me; and he was gone; and then I didn't know what to do. I daredn't go back home again--I couldn't bear it. I couldn't have bore to look at anybody, for they'd have scorned me. I thought o' you sometimes, and thought I'd come to you, for I didn't think you'd be cross with me, and cry shame on me. I thought I could tell you. But then the other folks 'ud come to know it at last, and I couldn't bear that. It was partly thinking o' you made me come toward Stoniton; and, besides, I was so frightened at going wandering about till I was a beggar-woman, and had nothing; and sometimes it seemed as if I must go back to the farm sooner than that. Oh, it was so dreadful, Dinah...I was so miserable...I wished I'd never been born into this world. I should never like to go into the green fields again--I hated 'em so in my misery."

Hetty paused again, as if the sense of the past were too strong upon her for words.

style="text-align: justify;">"And then I got to Stoniton, and I began to feel frightened that night, because I was so near home. And then the little baby was born, when I didn't expect it; and the thought came into my mind that I might get rid of it and go home again. The thought came all of a sudden, as I was lying in the bed, and it got stronger and stronger...I longed so to go back again...I couldn't bear being so lonely and coming to beg for want. And it gave me strength and resolution to get up and dress myself. I felt I must do it...I didn't know how...I thought I'd find a pool, if I could, like that other, in the corner of the field, in the dark. And when the woman went out, I felt as if I was strong enough to do anything...I thought I should get rid of all my misery, and go back home, and never let 'em know why I ran away I put on my bonnet and shawl, and went out into the dark street, with the baby under my cloak; and I walked fast till I got into a street a good way off, and there was a public, and I got some warm stuff to drink and some bread. And I walked on and on, and I hardly felt the ground I trod on; and it got lighter, for there came the moon--oh, Dinah, it frightened me when it first looked at me out o' the clouds--it never looked so before; and I turned out of the road into the fields, for I was afraid o' meeting anybody with the moon shining on me. And I came to a haystack, where I thought I could lie down and keep myself warm all night. There was a place cut into it, where I could make me a bed, and I lay comfortable, and the baby was warm against me; and I must have gone to sleep for a good while, for when I woke it was morning, but not very light, and the baby was crying. And I saw a wood a little way off...I thought there'd perhaps be a ditch or a pond there...and it was so early I thought I could hide the child there, and get a long way off before folks was up. And then I thought I'd go home--I'd get rides in carts and go home and tell 'em I'd been to try and see for a place, and couldn't get one. I longed so for it, Dinah, I longed so to be safe at home. I don't know how I felt about the baby. I seemed to hate it--it was like a heavy weight hanging round my neck; and yet its crying went through me, and I daredn't look at its little hands and face. But I went on to the wood, and I walked about, but there was no water...."


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