Howards End (version 3) | E. M. Forster | Literary Fiction | Speaking Book | English | 5/7

Howards End (version 3) | E. M. Forster | Literary Fiction | Speaking Book | English | 5/7



chapter 25 of Howard's and this is a librivox recording all librivox recordings are in the public domain for more information or to volunteer please visit librivox.org recording by Kurt from Tucson Arizona Howards End by iam Forster chapter 25 Evy heard of her father's engagement when she was in for a tennis tournament and her play went simply to putt that she should marry and leave him had seemed natural enough that he left alone should do the same was deceitful and now Charles and Dolly said that it was all her fault but I never dreamt of such a thing she grumbled dad took me to call now and then and made me ask her to Simpsons well I'm all together off dad it was also an insult to their mother's memory there they were agreed and Evy had the idea of returning mrs. Wilcox's lace and jewelry as a protest against what it would protest she was not clear but being only 18 the idea of renunciation appealed to her the more is she did not care for jewelry or lace dolly then suggested that she and uncle Percy could pretend to break off their engagement and then perhaps mr. Wilcox would quarrel with miss Schlegel and break off his or Paul might be cabled for but at this point Charles told them not to talk nonsense so Evie settled to marry as soon as possible it was no good hanging about with these Schlegel's eyeing her the date of her wedding was consequently put forward from September to August and in the intoxication of presence she recovered much of her good humor Margaret found that she was expected to figure at this function and to figure largely it would be such an opportunity said Henry for her to get to know his set Sir James bitter would be there and all the Cahills and the Fussell's and his sister-in-law mrs. Warrington Wilcox had fortunately got back from her tour around the world Henry she loved but his set promised to be another matter he had not the knack of surrounding himself with nice people indeed for a man of ability and virtue his choice had been singularly unfortunate he had no guiding principle beyond a certain preference for mediocrity he was content to settle one of the greatest things in life haphazard and so while his investments went right his friends generally went wrong she would be told oh so-and-so is a good sort a thundering good sort and find on meeting him thought he was a brute or a boor if Henry had shown real affection she would have understood for affection explains everything but he seemed without sentiment the thundering good sort might at any moment become a fellow for whom I never did have much use and have less now and be shaken off cheerily into oblivion Margaret had done the same as a schoolgirl now she never forgot anyone for whom she had once cared she connected though the connection might be bitter and she hoped that someday Henry would do the same Evie was not to be married from deucey Street she had a fancy for something rural and besides no one would be in London then so she left her boxes for a few weeks at oniton Grange and her bans were duly published in the parish church and for a couple of days the little town dreaming between the ruddy Hills was roused by the clang of our civilization and drew up by the roadside to let the motors pass oniton had been a discovery of mr. Wilcox's a discovery of which he was not altogether proud it was up towards the Welsh border and so difficult of access that he had concluded that it must be something special a ruined castle stood in the grounds but having got there what was one to do the shooting was bad the fishing and different and the women folk reported the scenery is nothing much the place turned out to be in the wrong part of Shropshire dammit and though he never damned his own property aloud he was only waiting to get it off his hands and then to let fly Evie's marriage was its last appearance in public as soon as a tenant was found it became a house for which he never had had much use and had less now and liked Howards End faded into limbo but on Margaret oniton was destined to make a lasting impression she regarded it as her future home and was anxious to start straight with the clergy etc and if possible to see something of the local life it was a market town as tiny awana sanguine possesses and had for ages served that lonely Valley and guarded our marches against the kilt in spite of the occasion in spite of the numbing hilarity that greeted her as soon as she got into the reserved saloon at Paddington her senses were awakened watching and the oniton was to prove one of her innumerable false starts she never forgot it nor the things that happened there the london party only number date the Fussell's father and son two anglo-indian ladies named Mrs Flynn lemon and Lady Ed sir mrs. Warrington Wilcox and her daughter and lastly the little girl very smart and quiet who figures that so many weddings and who kept a watchful eye on Margaret the bride elect dolly was absent a domestic event detained her at Hilton Paul had cabled a humorous message Charles was to meet them with a trio of motors at Shrewsbury Helen had refused her invitation to be had never answered his the management was excellent as was to be expected with anything that Hendri undertook one was conscious of his sensible and generous brain in the background they were his guests as soon as they reached the train a special label for their luggage a courier a special lunch they had only to look Pleasant and were possible pretty margaret thought with dismay of her own nuptials presumably under the management of Tibby mr. Theobald Schlegel and Miss Helen Schlegel requests the pleasure of Mrs Flynn lemons company on the occasion of the marriage of their sister Margaret the formula was incredible but it must soon be printed and sent and though Wickham place need not compete with oniton it must feed its guests properly and provide them with sufficient shares her wedding would either be ramshackle E or bourgeois she hoped the latter such an affair as the present staged with a deafness that was almost beautiful lay beyond her powers and those and her friends the low rich purr of a great Western Express is not the worst background for conversation and the journey passed pleasantly enough nothing could have exceeded the kindness of the two men they raised windows for some ladies and lowered them for others they rang the bell for the servant they identified the colleges as the train slipped by Oxford they cut books or bag purses in the act of tumbling onto the floor yet there was nothing finicky about their politeness it had the public school touch and though said Julis was virile more battles than Waterloo have been won on our playing fields and Margaret bowed to a charm of which she did not wholly approve I said nothing when the Oxford colleges were identified wrongly male and female created he them the journey to Shrewsbury confirmed this questionable statement and the long glass saloon that moves so easily and felt so comfortable became a forcing house for the idea of sex at Shrewsbury came fresh air margaret was all for sightseeing and while the others were finishing their tea at the Raven she annexed a motor and hurried over the astonishing City her chauffeur was not the faithful crane but an Italian who dearly loved making her late Charles watch in hand though with a level brow was standing in front of the hotel when they returned it was perfectly all right he told her she was too by no means the last and then he dived into the coffee room and she heard him say for God's sake hurry the women up we shall never be off an Albert Fussell reply not I I've done my share and Colonel Fussell opined that the ladies were getting themselves up to kill presently Myra mrs. Warrington's daughter appeared and as she was his cousin Charles blew her up a little she had been changing her smart traveling hat for a smart motor hat then mrs. Warrington herself leading the quiet child the two anglo-indian ladies were always last maids courier heavy luggage had already gone on by a branch line to a station near oniton but there were five hat boxes and for dressing bags to be packed and five dust cloaks to be put on and to be put off at the last moment because Charles declared them not necessary the men presided over everything with unfailing good humor by half-past five the party was ready and went out of Shrewsbury by the Welsh bridge Shropshire had not the reticence of Hertfordshire though robbed of half its magic by Swift movement it still conveyed the sense of hills they were nearing the buttresses that forced the Severn eastern and make it an English stream and the Sun sinking over the Sentinels of Wales was straight in their eyes having picked up another guest they turned southward avoiding the greater mountains but conscious of an occasional summit rounded and mild whose coloring differed and quality from that of the lower earth and whose contours altered more slowly quiet mysteries were in progress behind those tossing horizons the west as ever was retreating with some secret which may not be worth the discovery but which no practical man will ever discover they spoke of tariff reform mrs. Warrington was just back from the colonies like many other critics of empire her mouth had been stopped with food and she could only exclaim at the hospitality with which she had been received and warned the mother country against trifling with young Titans they threatened to cut the painter she cried and where shall we be then miss Schlegel you'll undertake to keep Henry's sound about tariff reform it is our last hope Margaret playfully confessed herself on the other side and they began to quote from their respective handbooks while the motor carried them deep into the hills curious these were rather than impressive for their outlines lack beauty and the pink fields on their summits suggested the handkerchiefs of a giant spread out to dry an occasional outcrop of rock an occasional wood an occasional forest treeless and brown all hinted at wildness to follow but the main color was an agricultural green the air grew cooler they had surmounted the last gradient and oniton lay below them with its Church its radiating houses its castle its river dirt peninsula close to the castle was a gray mansion unintellectual but kindly stretching with its grounds across the peninsula's neck a sort of mansion that was built all over England in the beginning of the last century while architecture was still an expression of the national character that was the Grange remarked Albert over his shoulder and then he jammed the brake on and the motor slowed down and stopped I'm sorry said he turning around do you mind getting out by the door on the right steady on what's happened asked mrs. Warrington then the car behind them drew up in the voice of Charles was heard saying get out the women at once there was a concourse of males and Margaret and her companions were hustled out and received into the second car what had happened as it started off again the door of a cottage open and a girl screamed wildly at them what is it the ladies cried Charles drove them a hundred yards without speaking then he said it's all right your car just touched a dog but stop cried Margaret horrified it didn't hurt him didn't really hurt him asked Myra no do please stop said Margaret leaning forward she was standing up in the car the other occupants holding her needs to steady her I want to go back please Charles took no notice we've left mr. Fussell behind said another and Angelo and crane yes but no woman I expect a little of mrs. Warrington scratched her palm will be more to the point than one of us the insurance company sees to that through mark Charles and Albert will do the talking I want to go back though I say repeated Margaret getting angry Charles took no notice the motor loaded with refugees continued to travel very slowly down the hill the men are their cars the others men will see to it the men can't see to it oh this is ridiculous Charles I asked you to stop stopping no good Charles isn't it said Margaret and jumped straight out of the car she fell on her knees puttered gloves and shook her hat over her ear cries of alarm followed her you've hurt yourself exclaimed Charles jumping after her of course I've hurt myself she retorted may I ask what there's nothing to ask said Margaret your hands bleeding I know I'm in for a frightful row from the Pater you should have thought of that sooner Charles Charles had never been in such a position before it was a woman in revolt who was hobbling away from him and the sight was too strange to leave any room for anger he recovered himself when the others caught them up their sword he understood he commanded them to go back Albert Fussell was seen walking towards them it's all right he called it wasn't a dog it was a cat there exclaimed Charles triumphantly it's only a rotten cat got room in your car for a little in' I cut as soon as I saw it wasn't a dog the chauffeurs are tackling the girl but Margaret walked forward steadily why should the chauffeurs tackle the girl ladies sheltering behind men men sheltering behind servants the whole system wrong and she must challenge it miss Schlegel pon my word you've hurt your hand I'm just going to see said Margot don't you wait mr. Fussell the second motor came round the corner it is all right madam said crane in his turn he had taken to calling her madam what's all right the cat yes madam the girl will receive compensation for it she was a very rude gorilla said Angelo from the third motor thoughtfully wouldn't you have been rude the italians spread out his hands implying that he had not thought of rudeness but would produce it if it pleased her the situation became absurd the gentlemen were again buzzing around miss Schlegel with offers of assistance and lady ed sir began to bind up her hand she yielded apologizing slightly and was led back to the car and soon the landscape resumed its motion the lonely cottage disappeared the castle swelled on its cushion of turf and they had arrived no doubt she had disgraced herself but she felt their whole journey from London had been unreal they had no part with the earth and its emotions they were dust and a stink and cosmopolitan chatter and the girl whose cat had been killed had lived more deeply than they owe Henry she exclaimed I have been so naughty for she had decided to take up this line we ran over a cat Charles told me not to jump out but I would and look she held out her bandaged hand your poor meg went such a flop mr. Wilcox looked bewildered in evening dress he was standing to welcome his guests in the hall thinking it was a dog added mrs. Warrington ah dogs a companion said Colonel Fussell a dog will remember you have you hurt yourself Margaret not to speak about and it's my left hand well hurry up and change she obeyed as did the others mr. Wilcox then turned to his son now Charles what's happened Charles was absolutely honest he described he believed to have happened Elbert had flattened out a cat and Miss Schlegel had lost her nerve as any woman might she had been got safely into the other car but when it was in motion had left out again in spite of all that they could say after walking a little on the road she had calmed down and had said that she was sorry his father accepted this explanation and neither knew that Margaret had artfully prepared the way for it it fitted in too well with their view of feminine nature in the smoking room after dinner the colonel put forward the view that Miss Schlegel had jumped it out of devilry well he remembered as a young man in the harbor of Gibraltar once how a girl a handsome girl too had jumped overboard for a bet he could see her now and all the lads overboard after her but Charles and mr. Wilcox agreed it was much more probably nerves in Miss Schlegel's case Charles was depressed that woman had a tongue she would bring worse disgrace on his father before she had done with them he strolled out on to the castle mound to think the matter over the evening was exquisite on three sides of him a little River whispered full of messages from the West above his head the ruins made patterns against the sky he carefully reviewed their dealings with this family until he fitted Helen and Margaret and Aunt juley into an orderly conspiracy paternity had made him suspicious he had two children to look after and more coming and day by day they seemed less likely to grow up rich men it is all very well he reflected the patron saint all the one can't be just indefinitely money isn't elastic what's to happen if Evie has a family and come to that so may the Pater there will not be enough to go round for there's none coming in either through dolly or Percy its damnable he looked enviously at the Grange whose windows poured light and laughter first and last this wedding would cost a pretty penny two ladies were strolling up and down the garden terrace and as the syllables imperialism were wafted to his ears he guessed that one of them was his aunt she might have helped him if she too had not had a family to provide for everyone for himself he repeated a maxim which had cheered him in the past but which rang grimly enough among the ruins of oniton he lacked his father's ability in business and so had an ever higher regard for money unless he could inherit plenty he feared to leave his children poor as he sat thinking one of the ladies left the terrace and walked into the meadow he recognized her as Margaret by the white bandage that gleamed on her arm and put out his cigar lest the gleam should betray him she climbed up the mound and zigzags and at times stooped down as if she was stroking the turf it sounds absolutely incredible but for a moment Charles thought that she was in love with him and had come out to tempt him Charles believed in temptresses who are indeed the strong Mans necessary complement and having no sense of humor he could not purge himself of the thought by a smile Margaret who was engaged to his father and his sister's wedding guests kept on her way without noticing him and he admitted that he had wronged her on this point but what was she doing why was she stumbling about amongst the rubble and catching her dress and brambles and burrs as she edged round the keep she must have got to leeward and smelt his cigar smoke for she exclaimed hello who's that Charles made no answer sexing her Celt she continued laughing in the darkness but it doesn't matter whichever you are you will have to listen to me I love this place I love Shropshire I hate London I'm glad that this will be my home ah dear she was now moving back towards the house what a comfort to have arrived that woman means mischief thought Charles and compressed his lips in a few minutes he followed her indoors as the ground was getting down mists were rising from the river and press lay it became invisible though it whispered more loudly there had been a heavy downpour in the Welsh Hills end of chapter 25 chapter 26 of Howards End this is a librivox recording all librivox recordings are in the public domain for more information or to volunteer please visit librivox.org Howards End by E M Forster chapter 26 next morning a fine mist covered the peninsula the weather promised well and the outline of the castle mound grew clearer each moment that Margaret watched it presently she saw the keep and the Sun painted the rebel gold and charged the white sky with blue the shadow of the house gathered itself together and fell over the garden a cat looked up at her window and mood lastly the river appeared still holding the mists between its banks in its overhanging alders and only visible as far as a hill which cut off its upper reaches Margaret was fascinated by oniton she had said that she loved it but it was rather the romantic tension that held her the rounded druids of whom she had caught glimpses in her drive the river is hurrying down from them to England the carelessly modelled masses of the lower hills thrilled her with poetry the house was insignificant but the prospect from it would be an eternal joy and she thought of all the friends she would have to stop in it and of the conversion of Henry himself to a rural life society too promised favorably the rector of the parish had dined with them last night and she found that he was a friend of her father's and Sonia what to find in her she liked him he would introduce her to the town while on her other side so James bitter sat repeating that she only had to give the word and he would whip up the County families for twenty miles round where their Sir James who was garden seeds had promised what he could perform she doubted but so long as Henry mistook them for the County families when they did call she was content Charles and Albert Fussell now crossed the lawn they were going for a morning dip and a servant followed them with their bathing dresses she had meant to take a stroll herself before breakfast but saw that the day was still sacred to men and amused herself by watching their contra taunt in the first place the key of the bathing shed could not be found Charles stood by the riverside with folded hands tragico while the servant shouted and was misunderstood by another servant in the garden then came a difficulty about a springboard and soon three people were running backwards and forwards over the meadow with orders and counter orders and recriminations and apologies if Margaret wanted to jump from a motorcar she jumped if Tibby thought paddling would benefit his ankles he paddled if a clerk desired adventure he took a walk in the dark but these athletes seemed paralysed they could not bathe without their appliances though the morning sun was calling in the last mists were rising from the dimpling stream had they found the life of the body after all could not the men whom they despised as milk sups beat them even on their own ground she thought of the bathing arrangements as they should be in her day no worrying of servants no appliances beyond good sense her reflections were disturbed by the quiet child who had come to speak to the cat but was now watching her watch the men she called good morning dear a little sharply her voice spread consternation Charles looked round and though completely attired in indigo blue vanished into the shed and was seen no more miss Wilcox is up the child whispered and then became unintelligible what's that it sounded like Cagney oak Zak back I can't hear on the bed tissue-paper gathering that the wedding dress was on view and that a visit would be seemly she went to Evie's room all was hilarity here Evie in a petticoat was dancing with one of the anglo-indian ladies while the other was adoring yards of white satin they screamed they laughed they sang and the dog barked Margaret screamed a little too but without conviction she could not feel that a wedding was so funny perhaps something was missing in her equipment Evie gasped Dolly's of rato not to be here oh we would rag then then Margaret went down to breakfast Henry was already installed he ate slowly and spoke little and was in Margaret's eyes the only member of their party who dodged emotions successfully she could not suppose him indifferent either to the loss of his daughter or to the presence of his future wife yet he dwelt intact only issuing orders occasionally orders that promoted the comfort of his guests he inquired after her hand he set her to pour out the coffee and mrs. Warrington to pour out the tea when evey came down there was a moment's awkwardness and both ladies rose to vacate their places Burton called Henry serve tea and coffee from the sideboard it wasn't genuine tact but it was tact of a sort the sort that is as useful as the genuine and saves even more situations at board meetings Henry treated marriage like a funeral item-by-item never raising his eyes to the whole and death where is thy sting love where is thy victory one would exclaim at the close after breakfast she claimed a few words with him it was best to approach him formally she asked for the interview because he was going on to shoot grouse tomorrow and she was returning to Helen in town suddenly dear he said of course I have the time what do you want nothing I was afraid something had gone wrong no I have nothing to say but you may talk glancing at his watch he talked of the nasty curve at the lychgate she heard him with interest her surface could always respond to his without contempt though all her deeper being might be yearning to help him she had abandoned any plan of action love is the best and the more she let herself love him the more chance was there that he would set his soul in order such a moment as this when they sat under fair weather by the walks of their future home was so sweet to her that its sweetness would surely Pierce to him each lift of his eyes each parting of the thatched lip from the clean-shaven must Prelude the tenderness that kills the monk and the beast at a single blow disappointed a hundred times she still hoped she loved him with two clearer vision to fear his cloudiness whether he droned trivialities today or sprang kisses on her in the Twilight she could pardon him she could respond if there is a nasty curve she suggested couldn't we walk to the church not of course you and Evie but the rest of us might very well go on first and that would mean fewer carriages one can't have ladies walking through the Market Square the Fussell's wouldn't like it they were awfully particular at Charles's wedding my she one of our party was anxious to walk and certainly the church was just around the corner and I shouldn't have minded but the colonel made a great point of it you men shouldn't be so chivalrous said Margaret thoughtfully why not she knew why not but said that she did not know he then announced that unless she had anything special to say he must visit the wine cellar and they went off together in search of Burton though clumsy and a little inconvenient oniton was a genuine country house they clattered down flagged passages looking into room after room and scaring unknown maids from the performance of obscure duties the wedding-breakfast must be in readiness when they came back from the church and tea would be served in the garden the sight of so many agitated and serious people made Margaret smile but she reflected that they were paid to be serious and enjoyed being agitated here were the lower wheels of the machine that was tossing Evie up into nuptial glory a little boy blocked their way with pigtails his mind could not grasp their greatness and he said by your leave let me pass please Henry asked him where Burton was but the servants were so new that they did not know one another's names in the still room set the band who had stipulated for champagne as part of their fee and who already of drinking beer sense of Araby came from the kitchen mingled with cries Margaret knew what had happened there for it happened a tweak in place one of the wedding dishes had boiled over and the cook was throwing cedar shavings to hide the smell at last they came upon the butler Henry gave him the keys and handed Margaret down the cellar stairs two doors were unlocked she who kept all her wine at the bottom of the linen cupboard was astonished at the sight we shall never get through it she cried and the two men were suddenly drawn into Brotherhood and exchanged smiles she felt as if she had again jumped out of the car while it was moving certainly oniton would take some digesting it would be no small business to remain herself and yet to assimilate such an establishment she must remain herself for his sake as well as her own since the shadowy wife degrades the husband whom she accompanies and she must assimilate for reasons of common honesty since she had no right to marry a man and make him uncomfortable her only Ally was the power of home the loss of Wickham place had taught her more than its possession Howards End had repeated the lesson she was determined to create new sanctities among these hills after visiting the wine cellar she dressed and then came the wedding which seemed a small affair when compared with the preparations for it everything went like one o'clock mr. Cahill materialized out of space and was waiting for his bride at the church door no one dropped the ring or mispronounced the responses or trod on evey strain or cried in a few minutes the clergyman performed their duty the register was signed and they were back in their carriages negotiating the dangerous curve by the lychgate margaret was convinced that they had not been married at all and that the Norman Church had been intent all the time on other business there were more documents to sign at the house and the breakfast to eat and then a few more people dropped in for the garden party there had been a great many refusals and after all it was not a very big affair not as big as Margaret's would be she noted the dishes in the strips of red carpet though outwardly she might give Henry what was proper but inwardly she hoped for something better than this blend of Sunday church and foxhunting if only someone had been upset but this wedding had gone off so particularly well quite like a durbur in the opinion of lady ed sir and she thoroughly agreed with her so the wasted day lumbered Ford the bride and bridegroom drove off yelling with laughter and for the second time the son retreated towards the hills of Wales Henry who was more tired than he owned came up to her in the meadow and interns of unusual softness said that he was pleased everything had gone off so well she felt that he was praising her too and blushed certainly she had done all she could with his intractable friends and had made a special point of cow towing to the men they were breaking camp this evening only the Warrington's in quiet child would stay the night and the others were already moving towards the house to finish their packing I think it did go off well she agreed since I had to jump out of the motor and thankful I lighted on my left hand I'm so very glad about it Henry dear I only hope that the guests at ours may be half as comfortable you must all remember that we have no practical person among us except my aunt and she is not used to entertainments on a large scale I know he said gravely under the circumstances it would be better to put everything into the hands of Harrods or Whiteley's or even to go to some hotel you desire or a hotel yes because well I mustn't interfere with you no doubt you want to be married from your old home my old homes fall into pieces Henry I only want my new isn't it a perfect evening the alexandrina isn't bad the alexandrina she echoed more occupied with the threads of smoke that were issuing from their chimneys and ruling the sunlit slopes with parallels of grey it's off Curzon Street is it let's be married from off Curzon Street then she turned westward to gaze at the swirling gold just where the river rounded the hill the Sun courted fairyland must lie above the bend and it's precious liquid was pouring towards them past Charles as bathing shed she gaze so long that her eyes were dazzled and when they moved back to the house she could not recognize the faces of people who were coming out of it a parlour maid was preceding them who are those people she asked their callers exclaimed Henry it's too late for callers perhaps their town people who want to see the wedding presents I am not at home yet two townies well hide among the ruins and if I can stop them I will he thanked her Margaret went forward smiling socially she supposed that these were unpunctual guests who would have to be content with vicarious civility since Evy and Charles were gone Henry tired and the others in their rooms she assumed the heirs of a hostess not for long for one of the group was Helen Helen in her oldest clothes and dominated by that tense wounding excitement that had made her a terror in their nursery days what is it she called oh what's wrong is Tibby ill Helen spoke to her two companions who fell back then she bore forward furiously they're starving she shouted I found them starving who why have you come the Bast's Oh Helen moaned Margaret whatever have you done now he has lost his place he has been turned out of his bank yes he's done for we upper classes have ruined him and I suppose you'll tell me it's the Battle of life starving his wife is ill starving she fainted in the Train Helen are you mad perhaps yes if you like I'm mad but I've brought them I'll stand injustice no longer I'll show up the wretchedness that lies under this luxury this talk of impersonal forces this can't about God doing what we're too slack to do ourselves have you actually brought two starving people from London to Shropshire Helen Helen was checked she had not thought of this in her hysteria abated there was a restaurant car on the train she said don't be absurd they aren't starving and you know it now begin from the beginning I won't have such theatrical nonsense how dare you yes how dare you she repeated as anger filled her bursting into Evie's wedding in this heartless way my goodness but you've a perverted notion of philanthropy look she indicated the house servants people out of the windows they think it's some vulgar scandal and I must explain oh no it's only my sister screaming and only two hangers on of ours whom she has brought here for no conceivable reason kindly take back that word hangers-on said Helen ominously calm very well conceded Margaret who for all her wrath was determined to avoid a real quarrel I too am sorry about them but it beats me why you've what them here or why you're here yourself it's our last chance of seeing mr. Wilcox Margaret moved towards the house of this she was determined not to worry Henry he's going to Scotland I know he is I insist on seeing him yes tomorrow I knew it was our last chance how do you do mr. bast said Margaret trying to control her voice this is an odd business what view do you take of it there is mrs. bast to prompted Helen Jacky also shook hands she like her husband was shy and furthermore ill and furthermore so be steely stupid that she could not grasp what was happening she only knew that the lady had swept down like a whirl wooden last night had paid the rent redeemed the furniture provided them with a dinner and breakfast and ordered them to meet her at Paddington next morning Leonard had feebly protested and when the morning came had suggested that they shouldn't go but she half mesmerised had obeyed the lady had told them to and they must and their bed sitting room had accordingly changed into Paddington and Paddington into a railway carriage that shook and grew hot and grew cold and vanished entirely and reappeared amid torrents of expensive scent year fainted said the lady in an awestruck voice perhaps the air will do you good and perhaps it had for here she was feeling rather better among a lot of flowers I'm sure I don't want to intrude began Leonard in answer to Margaret's question but you have been so kind to me in the past in warning me about the Profi rien that I wondered why I wondered whether whether we could get him back into the POE Furion again supplied Helen Meg this has been a cheerful business a bright evenings work that was on Chelsea embankment Margaret shook her head and returned to mr. bast I don't understand he left the porphyrin because we suggested it was a bad concern didn't you that's right and went into her bank instead I told you all that said Helen and they reduced their staff after he had been in a month and now he's penniless and I consider that we and our informant are directly to blame I hate all Leonard muttered I hope you do mr. bast but it's no good mincing matters you have done yourself no good by coming here if you intend to confront mr. Wilcox in to call him to account for a chance remark you will make a very great mistake I brought them I did it all cried Helen I can only advise you to go at once my sister has put you in a false position and it is kindest to tell you so it's too late to go to town but you'll find a comfortable hotel in oniton where mrs. bast can rest and I hope you'll be my guests there that isn't what I want miss Schlegel said Leonard you're very kind and no doubt it's a false position but you make me miserable I seem no good at all it's work he once interpreted Helen can't you see then he said Jackie let's go we're more bother than were worth were costing these ladies pounds and pounds already to get work for us and they never will there's nothing we're good enough to do we would like to find you work said Margaret rather conventionally we want to I like my sister you're only down in your luck go to their hotel and have a good night's rest and someday you shall pay me back the bill if you prefer it but Leonard was near the abyss and at such times men see clearly you don't know what you're talking about you said I shall never get work now if rich people fail at one profession they can try another not I I had my groove and I got out of it I could do one particular branch of insurance in one particular office well enough to command a salary but that's all poetry's nothing miss Schlegel once thoughts about this and that are nothing your money too is nothing if you'll understand me I mean if a man in over 20 once loses his own particular job it's all over with him I have seen it happen to others their friends gave them money for a little but in the end they fall over the edge it's no good it's the whole world pulling they always will be rich and poor he ceas'd won't you have something to eat said Margaret I don't know what to do it isn't my house and though mr. Wilcox would have been glad to see you at any other time as I say I don't know what to do I undertake to do what I can for you Helen offer them something do try a sandwich missus best they moved to a long table behind which a servant was still standing iced cakes sandwiches a new mobile coffee claret Cup champagne remained almost intact their overfed guests could do no more Leonard refused Jacky thought she could manage a little Margaret left them whispering together and had a few more words with Helen she said Helen I liked mr. bast I agree that he's worth helping I agree that we are directly responsible no indirectly buyer mr. Wilcox let me tell you once for all that if you take up that attitude I'll do nothing no doubt you're right logically and are entitled to say a great many scathing things about Henry only I won't have it so choose Helen looked at the sunset if you promise to take them quietly to the gorge I will speak to Henry about them in my own way mind there is to be none of this absurd screaming about justice I have no use for justice if it was only a question of money we could do it ourselves but he wants work and that we can't give him but possibly Henry can it's his duty to grumbled Helen nor am i concerned with duty I'm concerned with the characters of various people whom we know and how things being as they are things may be made a little better mr. Wilcox hates being asked favors all businessmen do but I am going to ask him at the risk of a rebuff because I want to make things a little better very well I promise you take it very calmly take them off to the gorge then and I'll try poor creatures but they look tried as they parted she added I haven't nearly done with you though Helen you have been most self-indulgent I can't get over it you have less restraint rather than more as you grow older think it over and alter yourself or we shan't have happy lives she rejoined Henry fortunately he had been sitting down these physical matters were important was it townies he asked greeting her with a pleasant smile you'll never believe me said Margaret sitting down beside him it's alright now but it was my sister Helen here he cried preparing to rise but she refused the invitation I thought she despised weddings don't get up she has not come to the wedding I've bundled her off to the gorge inherently hospitable he protested no she has two of her Protege x' with her and must keep with them let him all come my dear Henry did you see them I did catch sight of a brown bunch of a woman certainly the brown branch was Helen but did you catch sight of a sea green in salmon Bunch what are they out been feasting no business they wanted to see me and later on I want to talk to you about them she was ashamed of her own diplomacy in dealing with a Wilcox how tempting it was two laps from comradeship and to give him the kind of woman that he desired Henry took the hint at once and said why later on tell me now no time like the present shall I if it isn't a long story oh not five minutes but there's a sting at the end of it for I want you to find the man some work in your office what are his qualifications I don't know he's a clerk how old 25 perhaps what's his name bast said Margaret and was about to remind him that they had met at Wickham place but stopped herself it had not been a successful meeting where was he before Dempster's Bank why did he leave he asks still remembering nothing they reduced their staff all right I'll see him it was the reward of her tact and devotion through the day now she understood why some women prefer influence to rights Mrs Flynn lemon when condemning suffragettes had said the woman who can't influence her husband to vote the way she once ought to be ashamed of herself Margaret had winced but she was influencing Henry now and though pleased at her little victory she knew that she had won it by the methods of the harem I should be glad if he took him she said but I don't know whether he's qualified I'll do what I can but Margaret this mustn't be taken as a precedent no of course of course I can't fit in your protegees every day business would suffer I can promise you he's the last he's he's rather a special case pretty she's always our she let it stand at that heroes with a little extra touch of complacency and held out his hand to help her up how wide the gulf between Henry as he was and Henry as Helen thought he ought to be and she herself hovering as usual between the two now accepting men as they are now yearning with her sister for truth love and truth their warfare seems eternal perhaps the whole visible world rests on it and if they were one life itself like the spirits when Prospero was reconciled to his brother might vanish into air into thin air your Protege has made us late he said the Fussell's will be just starting on the whole she sided with men as they are Henry would save the best says he had saved Howards End while Helen and her friends were discussing the ethics of salvation his was a slapdash method but the world had been built slapdash and the beauty of mountain and river and sunset maybe but the varnish with which the unskilled artificer hides his joins oniton like herself was imperfect it's apple trees were stunted its castle ruinous it too had suffered in the border warfare between the anglo-saxon and the Celt between things as they are and as they ought to be once more the West was retreating once again the orderly stars were dotting the eastern sky there are certainly no rest for us on the earth but there is happiness and as Margaret descended the mound on her lover's arm she felt that she was having her share to her annoyance mrs. bast was still in the garden the husband and Helen had left her there to finish her meal while they went to engage rooms Margaret found this woman repellent she had felt when shaking her hand and overpowering shame she remembered the motive of our call at Wickham place and smelt again odours from the abyss odors the more disturbing because they were involuntary for there was no malice in Jacky there she sat a piece of cake in one hand an empty champagne glass in the other doing no harm to anybody she's overtired Margaret whispered she's something else said Henry this won't do I can't have her in my garden in this state is she Margaret hesitated to add drunk now that she was going to marry him he had grown particular he discountenanced too risque conversations now Henry went up to the woman she raised her face which gleamed in the Twilight like a puff ball Madame you will be more comfortable at the hotel he said sharply Jacky replied if it isn't n necro park ella my really resolve apologized to Margaret he led to our fair tea for all Henry sure repeated quite distinctly mr. Wilcox was much annoyed I can't congratulate you on your protegees he remarked hen don't go you do love me dear don't you bless us what a person psyche Margaret gathering up her skirts Jacky pointed with her cake you're a nice boy you are she aunt there now I love you Henry I am awfully sorry and pray why he asked and looked at her so sternly that she feared he was ill he seemed more scandalized than the facts demanded to have brought this down on you pray don't apologize the voice continued why does she call you hen said Margaret innocently has she ever seen you before seen him before said Jackie who hasn't seen hen he's serving you like me my dear these boys new way still we love him are you satisfied now Henry asked Margaret began to grow frightened I don't know what it is all about she said let's come in but he thought she was acting he thought he was trapped he saw his whole life crumbling don't you indeed he said bitingly I do too allow me to congratulate you on the success of your plan this is Helens plan not mine I now understand your interest in the bests very well thought out I am amused at your caution Margaret you are quite right it was necessary I am a man and have lived a man's I have the honor to release you from your engagement still she could not understand she knew of life see me side as a theory she could not grasp it as a fact more words from Jackie were necessary words unequivocal undenied so that's best from her and she went indoors she stopped herself from saying more so what ask Colonel Fussell who was getting ready to start in the hall we were saying Henry and I were just having the fiercest argument my point being seizing his coat from her footmen she offered to help him on he protested and there was a playful little scene no let me do that said Henry following thanks so much you see he's forgiven me the colonel said gallantly I don't expect there is much to forgive he got into the car the ladies followed him after an interval maids couriers and heavier luggage had been sent on earlier by the branch line still chattering still thanking their host and patronizing their future hostess the guests were home away then Margaret continued so that woman has been your mistress you put it with your usual delicacy he replied when please why when please ten years ago she left him without a word for it was not her tragedy it was mrs. Wilcox's end of chapter 26 chapter 27 of Howards End this is a librivox recording all librivox recordings are in the public domain for more information or to volunteer please visit librivox.org Howards End by E M Forster chapter 27 Helen began to wonder why she had spent a matter of eight pounds in making some people ill and others angry now that the wave of excitement was ebbing and had left her mr. bass and mrs. bass stranded for the night in a Shropshire hotel she asked herself what forces had made the wave flow at all events no harm was done Margaret would play the game properly now and though Helen disapproved of our sisters methods she need that the busts would benefit by them in the long run mr. Wilcox is so illogical she explained to Leonard who had put his wife to bed and was sitting with her in the empty coffee room if we told him it was his duty to take you on he might refuse to do it the fact is he isn't properly educated I don't want to set you against him but you'll find him a trial I can never thank you sufficiently miss Schlegel was all that Leonard felt equal to I believe in personal responsibility don't you and impersonal everything I hate I suppose I ought to say that but the Wilcoxes are on the wrong tack surely or perhaps it isn't their fault perhaps the little things that say I is missing out of the middle of their heads and then it's a waste of time to blame them there's a nightmare of a theory that says a special race is being born which will rule the rest of us in the future just because it lacks the little thing that says I had you heard that I get no time for reading had you thought it then that there are two kinds of people our kind who live straight from the middle of their heads and the other kind who can't because their heads have no middle they cannot say I they aren't in fact and so they're supermen Pierpont Morgan has never said I in his life Leonard roused himself if his benefactress wanted intellectual conversation she must have it she was more important than his ruined past I never got on to Nietzsche he said but I always understood that those supermen were rather what you may call egoists oh no that's wrong replied Helen no Superman ever said I want because I want must lead to the question Who am I and so to pity into justice he only says won't want Europe if he's Napoleon want wives of his Bluebeard want Botticelli of his Pierpont Morgan never the eye and if he could pierce through him you'd find panic and emptiness in the middle Leonard was silent for a moment then he said may I take it miss Schlegel that you and I are both the sort that say I of course and your sister too of course repeated Helen a little sharply she was annoyed with Margaret but did not want her disgust all presentable people say aye but mr. Wilcox he is not perhaps I don't know that it's any good discussing mr. Wilcox either quite so quite so he agreed Helen asked herself why she had snubbed him once or twice during the day she had encouraged him to criticize and then had pulled him up short was she afraid of him presuming if so it was disgusting of her but he was thinking this not quite natural everything she did was natural and incapable of causing offence while the Miss Schlegel's were together he had felt them scarcely human a sort of admonitory whirligig but a mich lethal alone was different she was in Helens case unmarried in Margaret's about to be married in neither case an echo of her sister a light had fallen at last into this rich upper world and he saw that it was full of men and women some of whom were more friendly to him than others Helen had become his michl a girl who scolded him in correspond it with him and had swept down yesterday with grateful vehement Margaret though not unkind was severe and remote who would not presume to help her for instance he had never liked her and began to think that his original impression was true and that her sister did not like her either Helen was certainly lonely she who gave away so much was receiving too little Leonard was pleased to think that he could spare her vexation by holding his tongue in concealing what he knew about mr. Wilcox Jacky had announced her discovery when he fetched her from the lawn after the first shock he did not mind for himself by now he had no illusions about his wife and this was only one new stain on the face of a love that had never been pure to keep perfection perfect that should be his ideal if the future gave him time to have ideals Helen and Margaret for Helens sake must not know Helen disconcerted him by turning the conversation to his wife mrs. bast does she ever say aye she asked half mischievously and then she is very tired it's better she stops in her room said Lenin shall I sit up with her no thank you she does not need company mr. best what kind of woman is your wife Leonard blushed up to his eyes you ought to know my ways by now does that question offend you no oh no miss Schlegel no because I love honesty don't pretend your marriage has been a happy one you and she can have nothing in common he did not deny it but said shyly I suppose that's pretty obvious but Jacky never meant to do anybody any harm when things went wrong or I heard things I used to think it was her fault but looking back it's more mine I needn't have married her but as I have I must stick to her and keep her how long have you been married nearly three years what did your people say they will not have anything to do with us they had a sort of Family Council when they heard I was married and cut us off altogether Helen began to pace up and down the room my good boy what a mess she said gently who are your people he could answer this his parents who were dead had been in trade his sister's had married commercial travellers his brother was a lay reader and your grandparents Leonard told her a secret that he had held shameful up to now they were just nothing at all he said agricultural laborers in that sort so from which part Lincolnshire mostly but my father's mother he oddly enough came from these parts round here from this very sharp sure yes that is odd my mother's people wore Lancashire but why do your brother and your sisters object to mrs. bast oh I don't know excuse me you do know I am NOT a baby I can bear anything you tell me and the more you tell me the more I shall be able to help have they heard anything against her he was silent I think I have guests now said Helen very gravely I don't think so miss Schlegel I hope not we must be honest even over these things I have guessed I am frightfully dreadfully sorry but it does not make the least difference to me I shall feel just the same to both of you I blame not your wife for these things but men Leonard left it at that so long as she did not guess the man she stood at the window and slowly pulled up the blinds the hotel looked over a dark square the mists had begun when she turned back to him her eyes were shining don't you worry he pleaded I can't bear that we shall be alright if I get work if I could only get work something regular to do then it wouldn't be so bad again I don't trouble after books as I used I can imagine that with regular work we should settle down again it stops when thinking settle down to what oh just settle down and that's to be life said Helen with a catch in her throat how can you with all the beautiful things to see and do with music with walking at night walking is well enough when a man's in work he answered oh I did talk a lot of nonsense once and there's nothing like a bailiff in the house to drive it out of you when I saw him fingering my Ruskin's in Stevenson's I seemed to see life straight real and it isn't a pretty sight my books are back again thanks to you but they'll never be the same to me again and I shan't ever again think a night in the woods is wonderful why not asked Helen throwing up the window because I see one must have money well you're wrong I wish I was wrong but the clergyman he has money of his own or else he's paid the poet or the musician just the same the Tramp he's no different the Tramp goes to the workhouse in the end and is paid for with other people's money miss Schlegel the real things money in all the rest is a dream you're still wrong you've forgotten death Leonard could not understand if we live forever what you say would be true but we have to die we have to leave life presently injustice and greed would be the real thing if we live forever as it is we must hold to other things because death is coming I love death not morbidly but because he explains he shows me the emptiness of money death and money are the eternal foes not death in life never mind what lies behind death mr. bast but be sure that the poet and the musician and the Tramp will be happier in it than the man who has never learnt to say I am I I wonder we are all in a mist I know but I can help you this far men like the Wilcoxes are deeper in the mists than any sane sound Englishman building up empires leveling all the world into what they call common sense but mention death to them and they're offended because deaths really Imperial and he cries out against them forever I am as afraid of death as anyone but not of the idea of death but what is the difference infinite difference said Helen more gravely than before Leonard looked at her wondering and had a sense of great things sweeping out of the shrouded night but he could not receive them because his heart was still full of little things as the lost umbrella had spoilt the concert at Queen's Hall so the lost situation was obscuring the diviner harmonies now death life and materialism were fine words but would mr. Wilcox take him on as a clerk talk as one would mr. Wilcox was king of this world the supermen with his own morality whose head remains in the clouds I must be stupid he said apologetically while to Helen the paradox became clearer and clearer death destroys a man the idea of death saves him behind the coffins and the skeletons that stay the vulgar mine lies something so immense that all that is great in us responds to it men of the world may recoil from the charnel-house that they will one day enter but love knows better death is his foe but his peer and in their age long struggle the fuse of love have been strengthened and his vision cleared until there is no one who can stand against him so never give in continued the girl and restated the vague yet convincing plea that the invisible lodges against the visible her excitement grew as she tried to cut the rope that fastened Leonard to the earth woven of bitter experience it resisted her presently the waitress entered and gave her a letter from Margaret another note addressed to Leonard was inside they read them listening to the murmurings of the river end of chapter 27 chapter 28 of Howards End this is a librivox recording all librivox recordings are in the public domain for more information or to volunteer please visit librivox.org recording by john brandon Howards End íem Forster chapter 28 for many hours Margaret did nothing then she controlled herself and wrote some letters she was too bruised to speak to Henry she could pity him and even determined to marry him but as yet all laid too deep in her heart for speech on the surface the sense of his degradation was too strong she could not commend voice or look and the gentle words that she forced out through her pen seemed to proceed from some other person my dearest boy she began this is not to part us it is everything or nothing and I mean it to be nothing it happened long before we ever met and even if it had happened since I should be writing the same I hope I do understand but she crossed out I do understand it struck a false nose and we could not bear to be understood she also crossed out it is everything or nothing Henry would resent so strong a grasp of the situation she must not comment comment is on feminine I think that'll about do she thought then the sense of his degradation choked her was he worth all this bother to have yielded to a woman of that sort was everything yes it was and she could not be his wife she tried to translate his temptation into her own language and her brain reeled men must be different even to want to yield to such a temptation her belief in comradeship was stifled and she saw life as from that glass saloon on the great western which sheltered male and female alike from the fresh air are the sexes really races each with its own code of morality and their mutual love a mere device of nature to keep things going strip human intercourse of the proprieties and it is reduced to this her judgment told her no she knew that out of nature's device we have built a magic that will win us immortality or more mysterious than the call of sex – sex is the tenderness that we throw into that call far whiter is the gulf between us and the farmyard than between the farmyard and the garbage that nourishes it we are evolving in ways that science cannot measure to ends that theology dares not contemplate men did produce one jewel the gods will say and saying will give us immortality Margaret knew all this but for the moment she could not feel it and transformed the marriage of Evie and mr. Cahill into a carnival of fools and her own marriage too miserable to think of that she tore up the letter and then wrote another dear mr. bast I have spoken to mr. Wilcox about you as I promised and I'm sorry to say that he has no vacancy for you yours truly MJ Schlegel she enclosed this in a note to Helen over which she took less trouble then she might have done but her head was aching and she could not stop to pick her words dear Helen if him this the Bast's are no good Henry found the woman drunk on the lawn I'm having a room got ready for you here and will you please come round at once on getting this the bests are not at all the type we should trouble about I may go round to them myself in the morning and do anything that is fair M in writing this Margaret felt that she was being practical something might be arranged for the Bast's later on but they must be silenced for the moment she helped you avoid a conversation between the woman and Helen she rang the bell for a servant but no one answered it mr. Wilcox in the Warrington's were gone to bed and the kitchen was abandoned to Saturnalia consequently she went over to the george herself she did not enter the hotel for discussion would have been perilous and saying that the letter was important she gave it to the waitress as shiri crossed the square she saw Helen then mr. bast looking out of the window of the coffee room and feared she was already too late her task was not yet over she ought to tell Henry what she had done this came easily before she saw him in the hall the night wind had been rattling the pictures against the wall and the noise had disturbed him who's there he called quite the householder Margaret walked in and passed him I've asked Helen to sleep she said she's best here so don't lock the front door I thought someone had got in at Henry at the same time I told the man that we could do nothing for him I don't know about later but now the Bast's must clearly go did you say that your sister is sleeping here after all probably is she to be shown up to her room I have naturally nothing to say to her I'm going to bed will you tell the servants about Helen could someone go to carry her bag he tapped a little gong which had been bought to some of the servants you must make more noise than that if you want them to hear Henry opened the door and down the corridor came shouts of laughter far too much screaming there he said and strode towards it Margaret would upstairs uncertain whether to be glad that they had met or sorry they had behaved as if nothing had happened and her deepest instincts told her that this was wrong for his own sake some explanation was due and yet what could an explanation tell her a date a place a few details which she could imagine all too clearly now that the first shock was over she saw that there was every reason to premise a mrs. best and resent her life had long laid open to her his intellectual confusion his obtuseness to personal influence he strewn but furtive passions should she refuse him because her outer life corresponded perhaps perhaps if the dishonor had been done to her but it was done long before her day she struggled against the feeling she told herself that mrs. Wilcox is wrong was her own but she was not a bargain theorist as she undressed her anger her regard for the dead her desire for a scene all grew weak Henry must have it as he liked or she loved him and someday she would use her love to make him a better man pity was at the bottom of her actions all through this crisis it he if one may generalize is at the bottom of woman when men like us it is for our own better qualities and however tender their liking we dare not be unworthy of it or they will quietly let us go what unworthiness stimulates woman it brings out her deeper nature or good or for evil here was the core of the question Henry must be forgiven and made better by love nothing else mattered mrs. Wilcox that unquiet yet kindly ghost must be left to her own wrong to her everything was in proportion now and she too would pity the man who was blundering up and down their lives and mrs. Wilcox known of his trespass an interesting question but Margaret fell asleep heathered by affection and lulled by the murmurs of the river that descended all the night from Wales she felt herself at one with her future home coloring it and coloured by it and awoke to see for the second time on Nisan Castle conquering the morning mists end of chapter 28 recording by John Brandon chapter 29 of Howards End this is a librivox recording all librivox recordings are in the public domain for more information or to volunteer please visit librivox.org recording by john brandon Howards End by e/m Forster chapter 29 Henry dear was her greeting he had finished his breakfast and was beginning the times his sister-in-law was packing she knelt by him and took the paper from him feeling that it was unusually heavy and thick then putting her face where it had been she looked up in his eyes Henry dear look at me no I won't have you shirking look at me there that's all you're referring to last evening he said huskily I have released you from your engagement I could find excuses but I won't no I won't a thousand times no I'm a bad lot and must be left at that expelled from his old fortress mr. Wilcox was building an one he could no longer appear respectable to her so he defended himself instead in a lurid past it was not true repentance leave it where you will why it's not going to trouble us I know what I'm talking about and it'll make no difference no difference he inquired no difference when you find that I'm not the fellow you thought he was annoyed with Miss Schlegel here he would have preferred her to be prostrated by the blow or even to rage against the tide of his sin flowed the feeling that she was not altogether womanly her eyes gazed too straight they had read books that are suitable for men only and though he had dreaded a scene and though she had determined against one there was a scene all the same it was somehow imperative I'm unworthy of you he began had I been worried there should not have released you from your engagement I know what I'm talking about I can't bear to talk of such things we'd better leave it she kissed his hand he jerked it from her and rising to his feet went on you with your sheltered life and refined pursuits and friends and books you and your sister and women like you I say how can you guess the temptations that lie around a man it is difficult for us said Margaret but if we are worth marrying we do guess cut off from decent society and family ties what do you suppose happens to thousands of young fellows overseas isolated no one near I know by bitter experience and yet you say it makes no difference not to me he left bitterly Margaret went to the sideboard and helped herself to one of the breakfast dishes being the last down she turned out the spirit lamp that kept him warm she was tender but grave she knew that Henry was not so much confessing his soul as pointing out the gulf Beach the male soul and the female and she did not desire to hear him on this point did Helen come she asked he shook his head but that won't do at all at all we don't want her gossiping with mrs. bass good god no he exclaimed suddenly natural then he caught himself up let them gossip my games up though I thank you for your unselfishness little as my thanks are worth didn't she send me a message or anything I heard if none would you ring the bell please what to do why to inquire he swaggered up to it tragically and sounded appeal margaret poured herself out some coffee the butler came and said that miss Schlegel had slept at the gorge so far as he had heard should he go around to the gorge how go thank you said Margaret hen dismissed him it is no good said Henry those things leak out you cannot stop a story once it is started I've known cases of other men I despised them once I thought that I'm different I shall never be tempted Oh Margaret he came and sat down near her improvising emotion she could not bear to listen to him we fellows all come to grief once in our time will you believe that there are moments when the strongest man let him who standeth take heed lest he fall that's true isn't it if you knew all you would excuse me I was far from good influences far even from England I was very very lonely in Long TRO woman's voice that's enough I have told you too much already for you to forgive me now yes that's enough dear I have he lowered his voice I have been through hell gravely she considered this claim had he had he suffered tortures of remorse or had it been there that's over now for respectable life again the latter if she read him rightly a man who has been through hell does not boast of his virility he's humble and hides it if indeed it still exists only in legend does the sinner come forth penitent but terrible to conquer pure women by his Restless power Henry was anxious to be terrible but had not got it in him he was a good average Englishman who had slipped the really culpable point his faithlessness to mrs. Wilcox never seemed to strike him she longed to mention mrs. Wilcox and bit by bit this story was told her it was a very simple story ten years ago was the time a garrison town in Cyprus the place no and then he asked her whether she could possibly forgive him and she answered I've already forgiven you Henry she chose her words carefully and so saved him from panic she played the girl until he could rebuild his fortress and hide his soul from the world when the butler came to clear away Henry was in a very different mood asked the fellow what he was in such a hurry for complained of the noise last night in the servants Hall Robert looked intently at the butler he as a handsome young man was faintly attractive to her as a woman an attraction so faint as scarcely to be perceptible yet the skies would have fallen if she had mentioned it to Henry on her return from the gorge the building operations were complete and the old Henry fronted her competent cynical and kind he had made a clean breast had been forgiven and the great thing now was to forget his failure and descended the way of other unsuccessful investments Jacky rejoined Howards End in deucey Street and the Vermilion motorcar and the Argentine hard dollars and all the things and people for whom he had never had much use and hid less now their memory hampered him he could scarcely attend to Margaret who brought back disquieting news from the gorge Helen and her clients had gone well let them go the man and his wife I mean for the more we see of your sister the better but they have gone separately Helen very early the best just before I arrived they have left no message they have answered neither of my notes I don't like to think what it all means what did you say in the notes I told you last night oh yes dear would you like one turn in the garden barber took his arm the beautiful weather soothed her but the wheels of Evie's wedding were still at work tossing the guests outwards as deftly as they had drawn in and she could not be with him long it had been arranged that they should motor to Shrewsbury whence he would go north and she back to London with the Warrington's for a fraction of time she was happy then her brain recommenced I am afraid there's been gossiping of some kind at the gorge Helen would not have left unless she had heard something I missed manage that it is wretched I ought to have parted her from that woman at once Margaret he exclaimed loosing his arm impressively yes yes Henry I am far from a saint in fact the reverse but you have taken me for better or worse bygones must be bygones you have promised to forgive me Margaret a promise is a promise never mentioned that woman again except for some practical reason never practical you practical yes I'm practical she murmured stooping over the mowing machine and playing with the grass which trickled through her fingers like sand he had silenced her but her fears made him uneasy now for the first time he was threatened with blackmail he was rich and supposed to be moral the vasts knew that he was not and might find it profitable to hint as much at all events you mustn't worry he said this is a man's business he thought intently on no account mentioned it to anybody Margaret flushed at advice so elementary but he was really paving the way for lie if necessary he would deny that he had ever known missus best and prosecute her for libel perhaps he had never known her here was Margaret who behaved as if he had not there the house round them were half a dozen gardeners clearing up after his daughter's wedding all was so solid and spruce that the past flew up out of sight like a spring blind leaving only the last five minutes unrolled glancing at these he saw that the car would be round during the next five and plunged into action Gong's were tapped orders issued Margaret was sent to dress and the housemaid to sweep up the long trickle of grass that she had left across the hall and his man to the universe so was the mind of mr. Wilcox to the minds of some men a concentrated light upon a tiny spot a little 10 minutes moving self-contained through its appointed years no pagon he who lives for the now and may be wiser than all philosophers he lived for the five minutes that have passed and the five to come he had the business mind how did he stand now as his motors slipped out of a lighten and breasted the great round Hills Margaret had heard a certain rumor but was all right she had forgiven him god bless her and he felt the man layer for it Charles and Evie had not heard it and never must hear no more must pall over his children he felt great tenderness which he did not try to track to a cause mrs. Wilcox was too far back in his life he did not connect her with the sudden aching love that he felt for Evie poor little Evie he trusted that Cahill would make her a decent husband and Margaret how did she stand she had several minor worries clearly her sister had heard something she dreaded meeting her in town and she was anxious about Leonard for whom they certainly were responsible nor art mrs. bast to starve but the main situation had not altered she still loved Henry his actions not his disposition had disappointed her and she could bear that and she loved her future home standing up in the car just where she had left from it two days before she gazed back with deep emotion upon her Nitin besides The Grange and the castle keep she could now pick out the church and the black and white Gables of the gorge there was the bridge and the river and nibbling its Green Peninsula she could even see the bathing shed but while she was looking for Charles's new springboard the forehead of the hill rose up and hid the whole scene she never saw it again day and night the river flows down into England day after day the Sun retreats into the welch mountains and the tower chimes see the conquering hero but the Wilcoxes have no part in the place nor in any place it is not their names that recur in the parish register it is not their ghosts that sigh among the alders at evening they have swept into the valley and swept out of it leaving a little dust and a little money behind end of chapter 29 recording by John Brandon chapter 30 of Howards End this is a librivox recording all librivox recordings are in the public domain for more information or to volunteer please visit librivox.org recording by john brandon Howards End by e/m Forster chapter 30 Tibby was now approaching his last year at Oxford he had moved out of college and was contemplating the universe or such portions of it as concerns him from his comfortable lodgings in long wall he was not concerned with much when a young man is on troubled by passions and sincerely indifferent to public opinion his outlook is necessarily limited Tibby neither wished to strengthen the position of the rich nor to improve that of the poor and so was well content to watch the Elms nodding behind the mildly embattled parapets of Magdalene who are worst lives those selfish he was never cruel though affected in manner he never posed like Margaret he disdained the heroic equipment and it was only after many visits that men discovered Slagel to possess a character and a brain he had done well in mods much to the surprise of those who attended lectures and took proper exercise and was now glancing disdainfully at Chinese in case he should someday consent to qualify as a student interpreter to him thus employed Helen entered a telegram had preceded her he noticed in a different way that his sister had altered as a rule he found her too pronounced and had never come across this look of Appeal pathetic kid dignified the look of a sailor who has lost everything at sea I have come from one night and she began there's been a great deal of trouble there who's for lunch said Tibby picking up the claret which was warming in the hearth Helen sat down submissively at the table why such an early start he asked sunrise or something when I could get away so I surmise why I don't know what's to be done Tibby I'm very much upset at the piece of news that concerns meg and do not want to face her and I'm not going back to Wickham place I stopped here to tell you this the landlady came in with the cutlets Tibby put a marker in the leaves of the Chinese grammar and helped them Oxford the Oxford of the vacation dreamed and rustled outside and indoors the little fire was coated with grey where the sunshine touched it Helen continued her odd story give Meg my love and say that I want to be alone I mean to go to Munich or else Bonn such a message is easily given says her brother as regards Wickham place and my share of the furniture you and she are to do exactly as you like my own feeling is that everything may just as well be sold what does one want with dusty economic books which have made the world no better or with mothers hideous chiffon ears I have also another Commission for you I want you to deliver a letter she got up I haven't written it yet why shouldn't I post it though she sat down again my head is rather wretched I hope that none of your friends are likely to come in Tibby locked the door his friends often found it in this condition then he asked whether anything had gone wrong at Evie's wedding not there said Helen and burst into tears he had known her hysterical it was one of her aspects with which he had no concern and yet these tears touched him as something unusual they were nearer the things that did concern him such as music he laid down his knife and looked at her curiously then as she continued to sob he went on with his lunch the chime came for the second course and she was still crying Apple Charlotte was to follow which spoils by waiting do you mind mrs. Martlet coming in he asked or shall I take it from her at the door could I bathe my eyes Tibby he took her to his bedroom and introduced the pudding in her absence having helped himself he put it down to warm in the hearth his hands stretched towards the grammar and soon he was turning over the pages raising his eyebrows scornfully perhaps that human nature perhaps a Chinese to him thus employed Helen returned she had pulled herself together but the grave appeal had not vanished from her eyes now for the explanation she said why didn't I begin with it I have found out something about mr. wilcox he has behaved very wrongly indeed and ruined two peoples lives it all came on me very suddenly last night I am very much upset and I do not know what to do mrs. best oh those people Helen seemed silenced shall I lock the door again no thanks to begins your being very good to me I want to tell you the story before I go abroad you must do exactly what you like treated as part of the furniture meg can not have heard it yet I think but I cannot face her and tell her that the man she's going to marry has misconducted himself I don't even know whether she ought to be told knowing as she does that I dislike him she will suspect me and think that I want to ruin her match I simply don't know what to make of such a thing I trust your judgment what would you do I gather he has had a mistress said Tibby Helen flushed with and anger and ruined two peoples lives and goes about saying that personal actions count for nothing and there always will be rich and poor he met her when he was trying to get rich out in Cyprus I don't wish to make him worse than he is and no doubt she was ready enough to meet him but there it is they met he goes his way and she goes hers what do you suppose is the end of such women he conceded that it was bad business they end in two ways either they sink till the lunatic asylums and the work houses are full of them and caused mr. will cops to write letters to the papers complaining of our national degeneracy or else they entrap a boy into marriage before it is too late she I can't blame her but this isn't all she continued after a long pause during which the landlady served them with coffee and come now to the business that took us to or Nitin we went all three acting on mr. Wilcox's advice the man throws up a secure situation and takes an insecure one from which he is dismissed there were certain excuses but in the main mr. Wilcox is to blame as Meg herself admitted it is only common justice that he should employ the man himself but he meets the woman and like the cur that he is he refuses and tries to get rid of them he makes Meg write two notes came from her late that evening one for me one for Leonard dismissing him with barely a reason I couldn't understand then it comes out that mrs. bast had spoken to mr. Wilcox on the lawn while we left her to get rooms and was still speaking about them when Leonard came back to her this Leonard knew all along he thought it natural he should be ruined twice natural could you have contained yourself it is certainly a very bad this said Tibby his reply seemed to come his sister I was afraid that I saw it out of proportion but you were right outside it and you must know in a day or two or perhaps a week take whatever steps you think fit I leave it in your hands she concluded her charge the facts as they touch Meg are all before you she added and Tibby sighed and felt it rather hard because of his open mind he should be impaneled to serve as a juror he had never been interested in human beings for which one must blame him but he had rather too much of them at Wickham place just as some people ceased to attend when books are mentioned so Tibby's attention wandered when personal relations came under discussion aunt Margaret to know what Helen knew the best to know similar questions had vexed him from infancy and at Oxford he had learned to say that the importance of human beings has been vastly overrated by specialists the epigram with its faint whiff of the 80's meant nothing but he might have led it off now if his sister had not been ceaselessly beautiful you see Helen have a cigarette I don't see what I'm to do then there's nothing to be done I daresay you are right let them marry that remains the question of compensation do you want me to adjudicate that to had you not better consult an expert this part is in confidence at Helen it has nothing to do with Meg and do not mention it to her the compensation I do not see who is to pay it if I don't and I have already decided on the minimum sum as soon as possible I am placing it in your account and when I am in Germany you will pay it over for me I shall never forget your kindness to begins if you do this what is the sum 5,000 good god alive said Tibby and went crimson now what is the good of driblets to go through life having done one thing to have raised one person from the abyss not these puny gifts of shillings and blankets making the gray more gray no doubt people will think me extraordinary I don't care a damn what people think cried he heated to unusual manliness of diction but it's half what you have not nearly half she spread out her hands over her soiled skirt I have far too much and we settled at Chelsea last spring that three hundred a year is necessary to set a man on his feet what I give will bring in a hundred and fifty between two it isn't enough he could not recover he was not angry or even shocked and he saw that Helen would still have plenty to live on but it amazed him to think what he people could make of their lives his delicate into nations would not work and he could only blurt out that the five thousand pounds would mean a great deal of bother for him personally I didn't expect you to understand me I I understand nobody but you'll do it apparently I leave you two commissions then the first concerns mr. Wilcox and you are to use your discretion the second concerns the money and is to be mentioned to no-one and carried out literally you will send a hundred pounds on account tomorrow he walked with her to the station passing through those streets whose serried Beauty never bewildered him and never fatigued the lovely creature raised domes and spires into the cloudless blue and only the ganglion of vulgarity round Carfax showed how evanescent was the Phantom how faint its claim to represent England Helen rehearsing her Camilla and noticed nothing the Bast's were in her brain and she retold the crisis in the meditative way which might have made other men curious she was seeing whether it would hold he asked her once why she had taken the Bast's right into the heart of Evie's wedding she stopped like a frightened animal and said does that seem to you so odd her eyes the hand laid on the mouth quite haunted him until they were absorbed into the figure of Saint Mary the Virgin before whom he paused for a moment on the walk home it is convenient to follow him in the discharge of his duties Margaret summons him the next day she was terrified at Helens flight and he had to say that she had called in at Oxford then she said did she seem worried at any rumor about Henry he answered yes I knew it was that she exclaimed I'll write to her Tibby was relieved he then sent the cheque to the address that helen gave him and stated that later on he was instructed to forward five thousand pounds an answer came back very civil and quiet in tone such an answer as to be himself would have given the check was returned the legacy refused the writer being in no need of money to be forwarded this to helen adding in the fullness of his heart that Leonard bast seemed somewhat a monumental person after all Helen's reply was frantic he was to take no notice he was to go down at once and say that she commanded acceptance he went a scurf of books and china ornaments awaited them the vests had just been evicted for not paying their rent and had wandered no one knew whither helen had begun bungling with her money by this time and had even sold out her shares the Nottingham and Derby railway for some weeks she did nothing then she reinvested and owing to the good advice of her stockbrokers became rather richer than she had been before end of chapter 30 recording by John Branden

One thought on “Howards End (version 3) | E. M. Forster | Literary Fiction | Speaking Book | English | 5/7

  1. Howards End (version 3) | E. M. Forster | Literary Fiction | Speaking Book | English | 5/7

    25: [00:00:00] – Chapter 25

    26: [00:22:27] – Chapter 26

    27: [00:52:35] – Chapter 27

    28: [01:04:53] – Chapter 28

    29: [01:15:32] – Chapter 29

    30: [01:29:37] – Chapter 30

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