that I perceived well. When—how—whither, I could not yet discern: but he himself, I doubted not, would hurry me from Thornfield. Real affection, it seemed, he could not have for me; it had been only fitful passion, that was balked; he would want me no more. I should fear even to cross his path now: my view must be hateful to him. Oh, how blind had been my eyes! How weak my conduct!

My eyes were covered and closed: eddying darkness seemed to swim round me, and reflection came in as black and confused a flow. Self-abandoned, relaxed, and effortless, I seemed to have laid me down in the dried-up bed of a great river; I heard a flood loosened in remote mountains, and felt the torrent come: to rise I had no will, to flee I had no strength. I lay faint; longing to be dead. One idea only still throbbed life-like within me—a remembrance of God: it begot an muttered prayer: these words went wandering up and down in my rayless mind, as something that should be whispered; but no energy was found to express them:—

"Be not far from me, for trouble is near: there is none to help."

It was near: and as I had lifted no petition to Heaven to avert it—as I had neither joined my hands, nor bent my knees, nor moved my lips—it came: in full, heavy swing the torrent poured over me. The whole consciousness of my life lorn, my love lost, my hope quenched, my faith deathstruck, swayed full and mighty above me in one sullen mass. That bitter hour cannot be described: in truth, "the waters came into my soul; I sank in deep mire: I felt no standing; I came into deep waters; the floods overflowed me."


CHAPTER XXVII

Some time in the afternoon I raised my head, and looking round and seeing the western sun gilding the sign of its decline on the wall, I asked, "What am I to do?"

But the answer my mind gave—"Leave Thornfield at once "—was so prompt, so dread, that I stopped my ears: I said, I could not bear such words now. "That I am not Edward Rochester's bride is the least part of my woe," I alleged: "that I have wakened out of most glorious dreams,

-296-

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Jane Eyre
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Introduction v
  • A List of the Principal Books on the BrontË Family xiii
  • Preface xvii
  • Note to the Third Edition xx
  • Illustrations xxi
  • Chapter I 1
  • Chapter II 6
  • Chapter III 12
  • Chapter IV 20
  • Chapter VI 34
  • Chapter VI 46
  • Chapter VII 54
  • Chapter VIII 62
  • Chapter IX 70
  • Chapter X 77
  • Chapter XI 88
  • Chapter XII 103
  • Chapter XIII 113
  • Chapter XIV 124
  • Chapter XV 136
  • Chapter XVI 148
  • Chapter XVII 157
  • Chapter XVIII 177
  • Chapter XIX 192
  • Chapter XX 202
  • Chapter XXI 217
  • Chapter XXII 239
  • Chapter XXIII 246
  • Chapter XXIV 256
  • Chapter XXV 274
  • Chapter XXVI 286
  • Chapter XXVII 296
  • Chapter XXVIII 322
  • Chapter XXIX 339
  • Chapter XXXI 350
  • Chapter XXXI 359
  • Chapter XXXII 367
  • Chapter XXXIII 378
  • Chapter XXXIV 391
  • Chapter XXXV 413
  • Chapter XXXVI 424
  • Chapter XXXVII 433
  • Conclusion 453
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