Page:Twilight.djvu/182

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174
TWILIGHT

"Like you! not particularly. Why should I? You are very troublesome and presumptuous."

She could not deal with him as she did with Gabriel. To this young country doctor, ten years before I knew him and he had acquired wisdom, men and women were just men and women, no more and no less. He had fallen headlong in love with Margaret, and when he saw he had, as he said, no chance, he could not be brought to believe that Gabriel Stanton was not her lover. He was demonstratively primitive, and many of his so-called medical visits she spent in fighting his advances. He knew that what she had to give she was giving to Gabriel Stanton, because she told him so, made no secret of it, but was for ever asking "If it hadn't been for him? If you'd met me first?" One would have thought that Margaret, Gabriel's "fair pale Margaret," would have resented or at least tired of this rough persistent wooing, but if this were so there was nothing in her conduct to show it.

She said or wrote to Gabriel Stanton: "the very thought of physical love is repugnant to me, horrible." Yet Peter kissed her hands, her feet, attempted her lips, made her fierce wild scenes. She called him a boy, but he was a year older than herself. Gabriel brought her books and the most reverent worship, was mindful of her slightest wish. He hoped that one day she would be his wife, but scarcely dared to say it, since once she put the