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A Love Episode - Emile Zola

A Love Episode - Emile Zola


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Originally UPLOADED by SATHEESH BALACHANDRAN/ Guruvayur/ /LIBRARY OF BABEL/ {in the process of "being built"} Contact: satheeshgvr@gmail.com, to DOWNLOAD this eBook. Thank You.
Originally UPLOADED by SATHEESH BALACHANDRAN/ Guruvayur/ /LIBRARY OF BABEL/ {in the process of "being built"} Contact: satheeshgvr@gmail.com, to DOWNLOAD this eBook. Thank You.

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Published by: Satheesh Balachandran on Jun 05, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Rainy weather ensued, and Jeanne became quite anxious that the doctor should commence his visits once
more. Yet her health had much improved. To humor her, Helene had been constrained to accept two or three
invitations to dine with the Deberles.

At last the child's heart, so long torn by hidden sorrow, seemingly regained quietude with the complete
re-establishment of her health. She would again ask Helene the old question--"Are you happy, mother

"Yes, very happy, my pet," was the reply.

And this made her radiant. She must be pardoned her bad temper in the past, she said. She referred to it as a fit
which no effort of her own will could prevent, the result of a headache that came on her suddenly. Something
would spring up within her--she wholly failed to understand what it was. She was tempest-tossed by a
multitude of vague imaginings--nightmares that she could not even have recalled to memory. However, it was
past now; she was well again, and those worries would nevermore return.


The night was falling. From the grey heaven, where the first of the stars were gleaming, a fine ashy dust
seemed to be raining down on the great city, raining down without cessation and slowly burying it. The
hollows were already hidden deep in gloom, and a line of cloud, like a stream of ink, rose upon the horizon,
engulfing the last streaks of daylight, the wavering gleams which were retreating towards the west. Below
Passy but a few stretches of roofs remained visible; and as the wave rolled on, darkness soon covered all.

"What a warm evening!" ejaculated Helene, as she sat at the window, overcome by the heated breeze which
was wafted upwards from Paris.

"A grateful night for the poor," exclaimed the Abbe, who stood behind her. "The autumn will be mild."

That Tuesday Jeanne had fallen into a doze at dessert, and her mother, perceiving that she was rather tired,
had put her to bed. She was already fast asleep in her cot, while Monsieur Rambaud sat at the table gravely
mending a toy--a mechanical doll, a present from himself, which both spoke and walked, and which Jeanne
had broken. He excelled in such work as this. Helene on her side feeling the want of fresh air--for the
lingering heats of September were oppressive--had thrown the window wide open, and gazed with relief on
the vast gloomy ocean of darkness that rolled before her. She had pushed an easy-chair to the window in order
to be alone, but was suddenly surprised to hear the Abbe speaking to her. "Is the little one warmly covered?"
he gently asked. "On these heights the air is always keen."

She made no reply, however; her heart was craving for silence. She was tasting the delights of the twilight
hour, the vanishing of all surrounding objects, the hushing of every sound. Gleams, like those of night-lights,
tipped the steeples and towers; that on Saint-Augustin died out first, the Pantheon for a moment retained a
bluish light, and then the glittering dome of the Invalides faded away, similar to a moon setting in a rising sea
of clouds. The night was like the ocean, its extent seemingly increased by the gloom, a dark abyss wherein
you divined that a world lay hid. From the unseen city blew a mighty yet gentle wind. There was still a hum;
sounds ascended faint yet clear to Helene's ears--the sharp rattle of an omnibus rolling along the quay, the
whistle of a train crossing the bridge of the Point-du-Jour; and the Seine, swollen by the recent storms, and
pulsing with the life of a breathing soul, wound with increased breadth through the shadows far below. A
warm odor steamed upwards from the scorched roofs, while the river, amidst this exhalation of the daytime
heat, seemed to give forth a cooling breeze. Paris had vanished, sunk in the dreamy repose of a colossus
whose limbs the night has enveloped, and who lies motionless for a time, but with eyes wide open.

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