It is time to explain how the young black mare became linked with the fate of certain persons, whose fortunes and doings, good or bad, are related in this story. To that end the scene must be shifted, and laid in LondonLondon, on a mild February morning, when even South Audley Street and its tributaries seemed to exhale a balmy fragrance from the breath of spring. In one of these, a window stood open on the drawing-room floorso wide open that the baker, resting his burden on the area railings below, sniffed the perfume of hyacinths bursting their bulbs, and beat time with floury shoes to the notes of a wild and plaintive melody, wailing from the pianoforte within. Though a delicate little breakfast-service had not yet been removed from its spider-legged table, the performer at the instrument was already hatted and habited for a ride. Her whole heart, nevertheless, seemed to be in the tips of her fingers while she played, drawing from the keys such sighs of piteous plaint, such sobs of sweet seductive sorrow, as ravished the soul of the baker below, creating a strong desire to scale the window-sill, and peep into the room. Could he have executed such a feat, this is what he would have seen. A woman of twenty-five, tall, slim-waisted, with a wealth of blue-black hair, all made fast and coiled away beneath her riding-hat in shining folds, massive as a three-inch cable. A woman of graceful gestures, undulating like the serpent; of a shapely figure, denoting rather the graces of action, than the beauty of repose; lithe, self-reliant, full of latent energy, betraying in every movement an inborn pride, tameless though kept down, and incurable as Lucifer's before his fall. The white hands moving so deftly over the keys were strong and nervous, with large blue veins and taper fingers; such hands as denote a vigorous nature and a resolute willsuch hands as strike without pity, and hold with tenacious graspsuch hands as many a lofty head has bowed its pride to kiss, and thought no shame. Lower and lower, she bent over them while she playedsofter and softer sank and swelled, and died away, the sad suggestive notes, bursting at last into a peal and crash of harmony, through which there came a short quick gasp for breath like a sob. Then she shut the pianoforte with a bang, and walked to the glass over the fire-place.
Editore Library Of Alexandria
Formato Ebook con Adobe DRM
EAN-13 9781465619365 9781465619365