Slowly but relentlessly the mist was creeping over the moor. It moved in little eddies; then it would make a surge forward like a great silent wave breaking on the shore and not receding. One by one the ...
Slowly but relentlessly the mist was creeping over the moor. It moved in
little eddies; then it would make a surge forward like a great silent
wave breaking on the shore and not receding. One by one the landmarks
were blotted out, until only some of the highest tors stuck up like
rugged islands from a sea of white.
As yet it had not reached Merridale Hall, which stood on highish ground,
some hundred yards from the main road to Yelverton, though already it was
drifting sluggishly round the base of the little hill on which the house
was built. Soon it would be covered: it would become a place cut off from
the outside world, a temporary prison of stones and mortar whose
occupants must perforce rely upon themselves. And it is possible that a
dreamer standing at the smoking--room window, and gazing over the
billowing landscape of cotton wool, might have pondered on the different
dramas even then being enacted in all the other isolated dwellings.
Strange stories of crime, of passion; tragedies of hate and love; queer
figments of imagination would perhaps have passed in succession through
his mind, always provided that the dreamer was deaf. For if possessed of
normal hearing, the only possible idea that could have occupied his brain
would have been how to preserve it.
Twice already had the butler entered, only to retire defeated from the
scene. The cook, who had been trying to obtain a little well--earned rest
herself, had then advanced into the hall and dropped a fusillade of
saucepans one after another on the tiled floor without the slightest
success. And finally, in despair, the staff had barricaded itself in the
pantry and turned on the gramophone.