"Out of the depths, O Lord, out of the depths," begins the most beautiful of the services of our church, and it is out of the depths of my life that I must bring the incidents of this story.
I was an unwanted child-unwanted as a girl at all events. Father Dan Donovan, our parish priest, told me all about it. I was born in October. It had been raining heavily all day long. The rain was beating hard against the front of our house and running in rivers down the window-panes. Towards four in the afternoon the wind rose and then the yellow leaves of the chestnuts in the long drive rustled noisily, and the sea, which is a mile away, moaned like a dog in pain.
In my father's room, on the ground floor, Father Dan sat by the fire, fingering his beads and listening to every sound that came from my mother's room, which was immediately overhead. My father himself, with his heavy step that made the house tremble, was tramping to and fro, from the window to the ingle, from the ingle to the opposite wall. Sometimes Aunt Bridget came down to say that everything was going on well, and at intervals of half an hour Doctor Conrad entered in his noiseless way and sat in silence by the fire, took a few puffs from a long clay pipe and then returned to his charge upstairs.
My father's impatience was consuming him.
"It's long," he said, searching the doctor's face.
"Don't worry-above all don't worry," said Father Dan.
"There's no need," said Doctor Conrad.