Page:Poor White.djvu/31

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along beside Hugh across the narrow road and to the station and the train that was to bear her away. After the departure of Sarah and Henry Shepard Hugh continued to struggle with his inclination to give way to dreams. It seemed to him a struggle it was necessary to w r in in order that he might show his re- spect and appreciation of the woman who had spent so many long hours laboring with him. Although, under her tutelage, hq had received a better educa- tion than any other young man of the river town, he had lost none of his physical desire to sit in the sun and do nothing. When he worked, every task had to be consciously carried on from minute to minute. Af- ter the woman left, there were days when he sat in the chair in the telegraph office and fought a desperate bat- tle with himself. A queer determined light shone in his small gray eyes. He arose from the chair and walked up and down the station platform. Each time as he lifted one of his long feet and set it slowly down a special little effort had to be made. To move about at all was a painful performance, something he did not want to do. All physical acts were to him dull but necessary parts of his training for a vague and glorious future that was to come to him some day in a brighter and more beautiful land that lay in the direction thought of rather indefinitely as the East. " If I do not move and keep moving I'll become like father, like all of the people about here," Hugh said to himself. He thought of the man who had bred him and whom he occasionally saw drifting aimlessly along Main Street or sleeping away a drunken stupor on the river bank. He was disgusted with him and had come to share the opinion the station master's