are always longer under the influence of prejudice. At

Five spines and six beasts netart2023-12-02 09:24:26 43 78

By Doctor Dormann's advice, those persons only were permitted to enter the bedroom whose presence was absolutely necessary. Besides Madame Fontaine and the doctor himself, Mr. Engelman and Minna were the other witnesses of the scene. Mr. Engelman had his claim to be present as an old friend; and Minna was to be made useful, at her mother's suggestion, as a means of gently preparing Mr. Keller's mind for the revelation that was to come. Under these circumstances, I can only describe what took place, by repeating the little narrative with which Minna favored me, after she had left the room.

are always longer under the influence of prejudice. At

"We arranged that I should wait downstairs," she said, "until I heard the bedroom bell ring--and then I myself was to take up Mr. Keller's dinner of lentils and cream, and put it on his table without saying a word."

are always longer under the influence of prejudice. At

"Exactly like a servant!" I exclaimed.

are always longer under the influence of prejudice. At

Gentle sweet-tempered Minna answered my foolish interruption with her customary simplicity and good sense.

"Why not?" she asked. "Fritz's father may one day be my father; and I am happy to be of the smallest use to him, whenever he wants me. Well, when I went in, I found him in his chair, with the light let into the room, and with plenty of pillows to support him. Mr. Engelman and the doctor were on either side of him; and poor dear mamma was standing back in a corner behind the bed, where he could not see her. He looked up at me, when I came in with my tray. 'Who's this?' he asked of Mr. Engelman--'is she a new servant?' Mr. Engelman, humoring him, answered, 'Yes.' 'A nice-looking girl,' he said; 'but what does Mother Barbara say to her?' Upon this, Mr. Engelman told him how the housekeeper had left her place and why. As soon as he had recovered his surprise, he looked at me again. 'But who has been my nurse?' he inquired; 'surely not this young girl?' 'No, no; the young girl's mother has nursed you,' said Mr. Engelman. He looked at the doctor as he spoke; and the doctor interfered for the first time. 'She has not only nursed you, sir,' he said; 'I can certify medically that she has saved your life. Don't excite yourself. You shall hear exactly how it happened.' In two minutes, he told the whole story, so clearly and beautifully that it was quite a pleasure to hear him. One thing only he concealed--the name. 'Who is she?' Mr. Keller cried out. 'Why am I not allowed to express my gratitude? Why isn't she here?' 'She is afraid to approach you, sir,' said the doctor; 'you have a very bad opinion of her.' 'A bad opinion,' Mr. Keller repeated, 'of a woman I don't know? Who is the slanderer who has said that of me?' The doctor signed to Mr. Engelman to answer. 'Speak plainly,' he whispered, behind the chair. Mr. Engelman did speak plainly. 'Pardon me, my dear Keller, there is no slanderer in this matter. Your own action has spoken for you. A short time since--try if you cannot remember it yourself--a lady sent a letter to you; and you sent the letter back to her, refusing to read it. Do you know how she has returned the insult? That noble creature is the woman to whom you owe your life.' When he had said those words, the doctor crossed the room, and returned again to Mr. Keller, leading my mother by the hand."

Minna's voice faltered; she stopped at the most interesting part of her narrative.

"What did Mr. Keller say?" I asked.

"There was silence in the room," Minna answered softly. "I heard nothing except the ticking of the clock."



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