Always while Jim worked—down underground the dripping water diamonds his hair, trickles down his neck, makes a gay sound on his canvas poncho: no mackinaw and boots, but it means a buck more a week dont it, it means stuff for the baby, dont it?—heavy and sore in his breast would lie the torment of the questions Anna had asked, and such a sad baffled flame of tenderness flicker above.
Work through, with a heart that ran far ahead of his feet, he would hurry, hurry home, a nameless fear on him, and his hello be almost a sob of joy as he flung open the door and saw that all seemed as it had been.
A gaunt Anna who could not understand this body of hers that tired so quickly and quivered like a naked nerve; this stranger self. One minute her old competence and strength; the next: addled, nervous, brutal, lost. Not managing, having to give under,