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FIRST LOVEEmilia Pardo-BazanHow old was I then? Eleven or twelve years? More probably thirteen, for before then is too early to be seriously in love; but I won't venture to be certain, considering that in Southern countries the heart matures early, if that organ is to blame for such perturbations. If I do not remember well when, I can at least say exactly how my first love revealed itself. I was... more...

CHAPTER I He was thirty-three, agreeable to look at, equipped with as much culture and intelligence as is tolerated east of Fifth Avenue and west of Madison. He had a couple of elaborate rooms at the Lenox Club, a larger income than seemed to be good for him, and no profession. It follows that he was a pessimist before breakfast. Besides, it's a bad thing for a man at thirty-three to come to the... more...

THE DOOR IN THE WALL I One confidential evening, not three months ago, Lionel Wallace told me this story of the Door in the Wall. And at the time I thought that so far as he was concerned it was a true story. He told it me with such a direct simplicity of conviction that I could not do otherwise than believe in him. But in the morning, in my own flat, I woke to a different atmosphere, and as I lay in... more...

"It's your own choosing," said the man with the withered arm once more. I heard the faint sound of a stick and a shambling step on the flags in the passage outside. The door creaked on its hinges as a second old man entered, more bent, more wrinkled, more aged even than the first. He supported himself by the help of a crutch, his eyes were covered by a shade, and his lower lip, half... more...

There was once a man who was also a writer of books. The merit of his books lies beyond the horizon of this tale. No doubt some of them were good, and some of them were bad, and some were merely popular. But he was all the time trying to make them better, for he was quite an honest man, and thankful that the world should give him a living for his writing. Moreover, he found great delight in the doing... more...

A Midwinter Madness. Genius has been defined as a capacity for taking pains. When a college man's good fairy makes her first call at his cradle, she may bestow upon him the football instinct, with muscles to match; no fairy could do more. But if she bumps up against Heredity, and is powerless to give him the supreme gift, she may compensate for it in a degree by leaving the kind of larynx and... more...

CHAPTER I At nine o'clock in the evening the body of the house at the Theatres des Varietes was still all but empty. A few individuals, it is true, were sitting quietly waiting in the balcony and stalls, but these were lost, as it were, among the ranges of seats whose coverings of cardinal velvet loomed in the subdued light of the dimly burning luster. A shadow enveloped the great red splash of... more...

CHAPTER I Rufus the Red sat on the edge of his boat with his hands clasped between his knees, staring at nothing. His nets were spread to dry in the sun; the morning's work was done. Most of the other men had lounged into their cottages for the midday meal, but the massive red giant sitting on the shore in the merciless heat of noon did not seem to be thinking of physical needs. His eyes under... more...

Being in a state of utter mystification, (a very disagreeable state, by-the-bye,) I hold it advisable to lay my unhappy case, in strict confidence, in the lowest possible whisper, and quite in a corner, before my kind friend, patron, and protector, the public, through whose means—for now-a-days every body knows everything, and there is no riddle so dark but shall find an OEdipus to solve it—I may... more...

In Belford Regis, as in many of those provincial capitals of the south of England, whose growth and importance have kept pace with the increased affluence and population of the neighbourhood, the principal shops will be found clustered in the close, inconvenient streets of the antique portion of the good town; whilst the more showy and commodious modern buildings are quite unable to compete in point of... more...

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