It ended. Well, we must be for ourselves in the long run; the mild and generous are only more justly selfish than the domineering; and it ended when circumstances caused each to feel that the ones interest was not the chief consideration in the others thoughts. On a mellow evening in September, I was coming from the garden with a heavy basket of apples which I had been gathering. It had got dusk, and the moon looked over the high wall of the court, causing undefined shadows to lurk in the corners of the numerous projecting portions of the building. I set my burden on the house-steps by the kitchen-door, and lingered to rest, and drew in a few more breaths of the soft, sweet air; my eyes were on the moon, and my back to the entrance, when I heard a voice behind me say,-“Nelly, is that you?”
It was a deep voice, and foreign in tone; yet there was something in the manner of pronouncing my name which made it sound familiar. I turned about to discover who spoke, fearfully; for the doors were shut, and I had seen nobody on approaching the steps. Something stirred in the porch; and, moving nearer, I distinguished a tall man dressed in dark clothes, with dark face and hair. “Who can it be?” I thought. “Mr. Earnshaw? Oh, no! The voice has no resemblance to his.”
“I have waited here an hour,” he resumed, while I continued staring; “and the whole of that time all round has been as still as death. I dared not enter. You do not know me? Look, Im not a stranger!”
A ray fell on his features; the cheeks were sallow, and half covered with black whiskers; the brows lowering, the eyes deep-set and singular. I remembered the eyes.
“What!” I cried, uncertain whether to regard him as a worldly visitor, and I raised my hands in amazement. “What! you come back? Is it really you? Is it?”
“Yes, Heathcliff,” he replied, glancing from me up to the windows, which reflected a score of glittering moons, but showed no lights from within. “Are they at home? where is she? Nelly, you are not glad! you neednt be so disturbed. Is she here? Speak! I want to have one word with her-your mistress. Go, and say some person from Gimmerton desires to see her.”
“How will she take it?” I exclaimed. “What will she do? The surprise bewilders me-it payday loans New Mexico will put her out of her head! And you are Heathcliff! But altered! Have you been for a soldier?”
He lifted the latch, and I entered; but when I got to the parlour where Mr. and Mrs. Linton were, I could not persuade myself to proceed. At length I resolved on making an excuse to ask if they would have the candles lighted, and I opened the door.
They sat together in a window whose lattice lay back against the wall, and displayed, beyond the garden trees, and the wild green park, the valley of Gimmerton, with a long line of mist winding nearly to its top (for very soon after you pass the chapel, as you may have noticed, the sough that runs from the marshes joins a beck which follows the bend of the glen). Both the room and its occupants, and the scene they gazed on, looked wondrously peaceful. I shrank reluctantly from performing my errand; and was actually going away leaving it unsaid, after having put my question about the candles, when a sense of my folly compelled me to return, and mutter, “A person from Gimmerton wishes to see you maam.”