Support the Monkey! Tell All your Friends and Teachers
Mr. Rochester would like to see a cheerful hearth when he came in:
yes, the fire had been kindled some time, and burnt well. I placed
his arm-chair by the chimney-corner: I wheeled the table near it: I
let down the curtain, and had the candles brought in ready for
lighting. More restless than ever, when I had completed these
arrangements I could not sit still, nor even remain in the house: a
little timepiece in the room and the old clock in the hall
simultaneously struck ten.
‘How late it grows!’ I said. ‘I will run down to the gates: it is
moonlight at intervals; I can see a good way on the road. He may
be coming now, and to meet him will save some minutes of
suspense.’ The wind roared high in the great trees which
embowered the gates; but the road as far as I could see, to the right
hand and the left, was all still and solitary: save for the shadows of
clouds crossing it at intervals as the moon looked out, it was a long
pale line, unvaried by one moving speck.
A puerile tear dimmed my eye while I looked-a tear of
disappointment and impatience; ashamed of it, I wiped it away. I
lingered; the moon shut herself wholly within her chamber, and
drew close her curtain of dense cloud: the night grew dark; rain
came driving fast on the gale.
‘I wish he would come! I wish he would come!’ I exclaimed, seized
with hypochondriac foreboding. I had expected his arrival before
tea; now it was dark: what could keep him? Had an accident
happened? The event of last night again recurred to me. I
interpreted it as a warning of disaster. I feared my hopes were too
bright to be realised; and I had enjoyed so much bliss lately that I
imagined my fortune had passed its meridian, and must now
‘Well, I cannot return to the house,’ I thought; ‘I cannot sit by the
fireside, while he is abroad in inclement weather: better tire my
limbs than strain my heart; I will go forward and meet him.’ I set
out; I walked fast, but not far: ere I had measured a quarter of a
mile, I heard the tramp of hoofs; a horseman came on, full gallop; a
dog ran by his side.
Away with evil presentiment! It was he: here he was, mounted on
Mesrour, followed by Pilot. He saw me; for the moon had opened a
blue field in the sky, and rode in it watery bright: he took his hat
off, and waved it round his head. I now ran to meet him.
‘There!’ he exclaimed, as he stretched out his hand and bent from
the saddle: ‘you can’t do without me, that is evident. Step on my
boot-toe; give me both hands: mount!’ I obeyed: joy made me agile:
I sprang up before him. A hearty kissing I got for a welcome, and
some boastful triumph, which I swallowed as well as I could.