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<- Previous | Table of Contents | Next -> Digital Library - Digital Library-Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte


‘Ere many days,’ I said, as I terminated my musings, ‘I will know
something of him whose voice seemed last night to summon me.
Letters have proved of no avail-personal inquiry shall replace
them.’ At breakfast I announced to Diana and Mary that I was
going a journey, and should be absent at least four days.

‘Alone, Jane?’ they asked.
‘Yes; it was to see or hear news of a friend about whom I had for
some time been uneasy.’ They might have said, as I have no doubt
they thought, that they had believed me to be without any friends
save them: for, indeed, I had often said so; but, with their true
natural delicacy, they abstained from comment, except that Diana
asked me if I was sure I was well enough to travel. I looked very
pale, she observed. I replied, that nothing ailed me save anxiety of
mind, which I hoped soon to alleviate.

It was easy to make my further arrangements; for I was troubled
with no inquiries-no surmises. Having once explained to them that
I could not now be explicit about my plans, they kindly and wisely
acquiesced in the silence with which I pursued them, according to
me the privilege of free action I should under similar circumstances
have accorded them.

I left Moor House at three o’clock P.M., and soon after four I stood
at the foot of the sign-post of Whitcross, waiting the arrival of the
coach which was to take me to distant Thornfield. Amidst the
silence of those solitary roads and desert hills, I heard it approach
from a great distance. It was the same vehicle whence, a year ago, I
had alighted one summer evening on this very spot-how desolate,
and hopeless, and objectless! It stopped as I beckoned. I entered-
not now obliged to part with my whole fortune as the price of its
accommodation. Once more on the road to Thornfield, I felt like
the messenger-pigeon flying home.

It was a journey of six-and-thirty hours. I had set out from
Whitcross on a Tuesday afternoon, and early on the succeeding
Thursday morning the coach stopped to water the horses at a
wayside inn, situated in the midst of scenery whose green hedges
and large fields and low pastoral hills (how mild of feature and
verdant of hue compared with the stern North-Midland moors of
Morton!) met my eye like the lineaments of a once familiar face.
Yes, I knew the character of this landscape: I was sure we were
near my bourne.

‘How far is Thornfield Hall from here?’ I asked of the ostler.
‘Just two miles, ma’am, across the fields.’ ‘My journey is closed,’ I
thought to myself. I got out of the coach, gave a box I had into the
ostler’s charge, to be kept till I called for it; paid my fare; satisfied
the coachman, and was going: the brightening day gleamed on the
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