Very well; then listen, and dont dodge, as everyone else does. Didnt the doctor think my eyes worse the last time he came? Mother wont say, but you shall.
I believe he did, faltered Rose.
I thought so! Did he say I should be able to go to school when it begins?
No, Mac, very low.
That was all, but Rose saw her cousin set his lips together and take a long breath, as if she had hit him hard. He bore the disappointment bravely, however, and asked quite steadily in a minute
How soon does he think I can study again?
It was so hard to answer that! Yet Rose knew she must, for Aunt Jane had declared she could not do it, and Uncle Mac had begged her to break the truth to the poor lad.
Not for a good many months.
How many? he asked with a pathetic sort of gruffness.
A year, perhaps.
A whole year! Why, I expected to be ready for college by that time. And, pushing up the shade, Mac stared at her with startled eyes, that soon blinked and fell before the one ray of light.
Plenty of time for that; you must be patient now, and get them thoroughly well, or they will trouble you again when it will be harder to spare them, she said, with tears in her own eyes.
I wont do it! I will study and get through somehow. Its all humbug about taking care so long. These doctors like to keep hold of a fellow if they can. But I wont stand itI vow I wont! and he banged his fist down on the unoffending pillow as if he were pommelling the hard-hearted doctor.
Now, Mac, listen to me, Rose said very earnestly, though her voice shook a little and her heart ached. You know you have hurt your eyes reading by fire-light and in the dusk, and sitting up late, and now youll have to pay for it; the doctor said so. You must be careful, and do as he tells you, or you will beblind.
Yes, it is true, and he wanted us to tell you that nothing but entire rest would cure you. I know its dreadfully hard, but well all help you; Ill read all day long, and lead you, and wait upon you, and try to make it easier
She stopped there, for it was evident that he did not hear a sound; the word blind seemed to have knocked him down, for he had buried his face in the pillow, and lay so still that Rose was frightened. She sat motionless for many minutes, longing to comfort him, but not knowing how, and wishing Uncle Alec would come, for he had promised to tell Mac.
Presently, a sort of choking sound came out of the pillow, and went straight to her heartthe most pathetic sob she ever heard, for, though it was the most natural means of relief, the poor fellow must not indulge in it because of the afflicted eyes. The French Revolution tumbled out of her lap, and, running to the sofa, she knelt down by it, saying, with the motherly sort of tenderness girls feel for any sorrowing creature
|Copyright: All texts on Bibliomania are © Bibliomania.com Ltd, and may not be reproduced in any form without our written permission. See our FAQ for more details.|