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She cast down her eyes, and trembled.

'I could hardly fail to know, even if I had not heard - but from
other lips than yours, Agnes, which seems strange - that there is
someone upon whom you have bestowed the treasure of your love. Do
not shut me out of what concerns your happiness so nearly! If you
can trust me, as you say you can, and as I know you may, let me be
your friend, your brother, in this matter, of all others!'

With an appealing, almost a reproachful, glance, she rose from the
window; and hurrying across the room as if without knowing where,
put her hands before her face, and burst into such tears as smote
me to the heart.

And yet they awakened something in me, bringing promise to my
heart. Without my knowing why, these tears allied themselves with
the quietly sad smile which was so fixed in my remembrance, and
shook me more with hope than fear or sorrow.

'Agnes! Sister! Dearest! What have I done?'

'Let me go away, Trotwood. I am not well. I am not myself. I
will speak to you by and by - another time. I will write to you.
Don't speak to me now. Don't! don't!'

I sought to recollect what she had said, when I had spoken to her
on that former night, of her affection needing no return. It
seemed a very world that I must search through in a moment.
'Agnes, I cannot bear to see you so, and think that I have been the
cause. My dearest girl, dearer to me than anything in life, if you
are unhappy, let me share your unhappiness. If you are in need of
help or counsel, let me try to give it to you. If you have indeed
a burden on your heart, let me try to lighten it. For whom do I
live now, Agnes, if it is not for you!'

'Oh, spare me! I am not myself! Another time!' was all I could

Was it a selfish error that was leading me away? Or, having once
a clue to hope, was there something opening to me that I had not
dared to think of?

'I must say more. I cannot let you leave me so! For Heaven's sake,
Agnes, let us not mistake each other after all these years, and all
<- Previous | Table Of Contents | Next -> Digital Library - Copperfield by Charles Dickens

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