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AMORY, SON OF BEATRICE
SPIRES AND GARGOYLES
THE EGOTIST CONSIDERS
NARCISSUS OFF DUTY
THE DEBUTANTE
EXPERIMENTS IN CONVALESCENCE
YOUNG IRONY
THE SUPERCILIOUS SACRIFICE
THE EGOTIST BECOMES A PERSONAGE

life that she could be rational (she meant pose with comfort). So they 

had turned into the woods and rode for half an hour with scarcely 

a word, except when she whispered "Damn!" at a bothersome 

branch--whispered it as no other girl was ever able to whisper it. Then 

they started up Harper's Hill, walking their tired horses. 

 

"Good Lord! It's quiet here!" whispered Eleanor; "much more lonesome 

than the woods." 

 

"I hate woods," Amory said, shuddering. "Any kind of foliage or 

underbrush at night. Out here it's so broad and easy on the spirit." 

 

"The long slope of a long hill." 

 

"And the cold moon rolling moonlight down it." 

 

"And thee and me, last and most important." 

 

It was quiet that night--the straight road they followed up to the edge 

of the cliff knew few footsteps at any time. Only an occasional negro 

cabin, silver-gray in the rock-ribbed moonlight, broke the long line of 

bare ground; behind lay the black edge of the woods like a dark frosting 

on white cake, and ahead the sharp, high horizon. It was much colder--so 

cold that it settled on them and drove all the warm nights from their 

minds. 

 

"The end of summer," said Eleanor softly. "Listen to the beat of our 

horses' hoofs--'tump-tump-tump-a-tump.' Have you ever been feverish 

and had all noises divide into 'tump-tump-tump' until you could swear 

eternity was divisible into so many tumps? That's the way I feel--old 

horses go tump-tump.... I guess that's the only thing that separates 

horses and clocks from us. Human beings can't go 'tump-tump-tump' 

without going crazy." 

 

The breeze freshened and Eleanor pulled her cape around her and 

shivered. 

 

"Are you very cold?" asked Amory. 

 

"No, I'm thinking about myself--my black old inside self, the real one, 

with the fundamental honesty that keeps me from being absolutely wicked 

by making me realize my own sins." 

 

They were riding up close by the cliff and Amory gazed over. Where the 

fall met the ground a hundred feet below, a black stream made a sharp 

line, broken by tiny glints in the swift water. 


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