Notwithstanding (Classic Reprint)by Mary Cholmondeley
Annette leaned against the low parapet and looked steadfastly at the water, so steadfastly that all the brilliant, newly-washed, tree besprinkled city of Paris, lying spread before her, cleft by the wide river with its many bridges, was invisible to her. She saw nothing but the Seine, so tranquil yesterday, and to-day chafing beneath its
Excerpt from Notwithstanding
Annette leaned against the low parapet and looked steadfastly at the water, so steadfastly that all the brilliant, newly-washed, tree besprinkled city of Paris, lying spread before her, cleft by the wide river with its many bridges, was invisible to her. She saw nothing but the Seine, so tranquil yesterday, and to-day chafing beneath its bridges and licking ominously round their great stone supports - because there had been rain the day before.
The Seine was the only angry, sinister element in the suave September sunshine, and perhaps that was why Annette's eyes had been first drawn to it. She also was angry, with the deep, still anger which invades once or twice in a lifetime placid, gentle-tempered pe0p1e.
Her dark eyes under their long curled lashes looked down over the stone bastion of the Pont Neuf at a yellow eddy just below her.
They were beautiful eyes, limpid, deep, with a certain tranquil mystery in them. But there was no mystery in them at this moment. They were fixed, dilated, desperate.
Annette was twenty-one, but she looked much younger, owing to a certain slowness of develop ment, an immaturity of mind and body. She reminded one not of an opening ﬂower, but of a big, loose-limbed colt, ungainly still, but every line promising symmetry and grace to come. She was not quite beautiful yet, but that clearly was also still to come, when life should have had time to erase a certain ruminative stolidity from her fine, still countenance. One felt that in her schoolroom days she must have been often tartly desired not to moon. She gave the impression of not having wholly emerged from the Chrysalis, and her bewildered face, the face of a dreamer, wore a strained expression, as if some cruel hand had mockingly rent asunder the veils behind which her life had been moving and growing so far, and had thrust her, cold and shuddering, with unready wings, into'a world for which she was not fully equipped.
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