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<- Previous | Table of Contents | Next -> Digital Library-The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde


“The button from your foil,” he answered. “You have dropped it.”
She laughed. “I have still the mask.” “It makes your eyes lovelier,”
was his reply.

She laughed again. Her teeth showed like white seeds in a scarlet

Upstairs, in his own room, Dorian Gray was lying on a sofa, with
terror in every tingling fibre of his body. Life had suddenly
become too hideous a burden for him to bear. The dreadful death
of the unlucky beater, shot in the thicket like a wild animal, had
seemed to him to prefigure death for himself also. He had nearly
swooned at what Lord Henry had said in a chance mood of cynical

At five o’clock he rang his bell for his servant, and gave him orders
to pack his things for the night-express to town, and to have the
brougham at the door by eight-thirty. He was determined not to
sleep another night at Selby Royal. It was an ill-omened place.
Death walked there in the sunlight. The grass of the forest had
been spotted with blood.

Then he wrote a note to Lord Henry, telling him that he was going
up to town to consult his doctor, and asking him to entertain his
guests in his absence. As he was putting it into the envelope, a
knock came to the door, and his valet informed him that the head-
keeper wished to see him. He frowned, and bit his lip. “Send him
in,” he muttered, after some moments’ hesitation.

As soon as the man entered Dorian pulled his cheque-book out of a
drawer, and spread it out before him.

“I suppose you have come about the unfortunate accident of this
morning, Thornton?” he said, taking up a pen.

“Yes, sir,” answered the game-keeper.
“Was the poor fellow married? Had he any people dependent on
him?” asked Dorian, looking bored. “If so, I should not like them to
be left in want, and will send them any sum of money you may
think necessary.”

“We don’t know who he is, sir. That is what I took the liberty of
coming to you about.” “Don’t know who he is?” said Dorian,
listlessly. “What do you mean? Wasn’t he one of your men?” “No,
sir. Never saw him before. Seems like a sailor, sir.” The pen
dropped from Dorian Gray’s hand, and he felt as if his heart had
suddenly stopped beating. “A sailor?” he cried out. “Did you say a
sailor?” “Yes, sir. He looks as if he had been a sort of sailor;
tattooed on both arms, and that kind of thing.” “Was there
anything found on him?” said Dorian, leaning forward and
looking at the man with startled eyes. “Anything that would tell
his name?” “Some money, sir-not much, and a six-shooter. There
<- Previous | Table of Contents | Next -> Digital Library-The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

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