det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница

‘Marta.’ I tried to keep the relief from my voice. ‘I…I’m sorry. I’m…not quite myself today.’ I grinned weakly.

‘As a matter of fact, Mr Chester, neither am I.’ Her smile was small and mischievous, her voice a whisper of hay and summer sky. ‘Perhaps we both need a drink.’she poured the drinks I watched her, feeling my heartbeat slow to almost normal, and before long I was able to look around.room was quite bare. A narrow bed with a white coverlet, a bedstand with a ewer and basin, a small table and a det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница shabby armchair were all the furnishings there and, by the light of the single lamp, everything looked all the more bleak. There were no rugs on the bare boards, no pictures on the walls, no curtains. And today Marta herself was like her room, dressed in a plain white nightgown, barefoot, with her hair loose and partly shielding her face. For a moment I began to feel uneasy once more-the similarities to that other night were too strong-as if this, too, were another of her disguises designed to push me off-balance into permanent insanity. But when she put det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница her arms around me she was warm and lightly scented with simple, childish fragrances: soap and lavender and something sweet like liquorice; she who had overwhelmed me with heady, exotic sensations was now the most elementary of juvenile seductresses, a shy, eager virgin of fourteen, delightfully untutored, painfully sincere.of course I knew that this, too, was one of her disguises: the essential Marta was as unknown to me now as it had ever been. But I gave myself up to the illusion of tenderness, and as we lay like children in each other’s arms she whispered a det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница little story into my ear: the story of a man who falls in love with a dead woman’s portrait, who buys it and hides it in his attic for fear his wife might ask questions. Every day he visits the portrait, growing more and more melancholy, unable to give up the pleasure he feels gazing upon it. His wife begins to suspect and one day she follows him up into his secret place and watches him as he sits in front of the portrait. Seized with jealousy she waits until he has gone, then she det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница takes a knife and goes up to the hated picture, meaning to slash it to pieces. But the picture is haunted by the soul of the dead woman and, as her rival comes at her with the knife, she leaps at her. There is a struggle, but the ghostwoman has the strength of desperation. The poor wife is driven shrieking out of her body into chaos and the ghostwoman, taking the other’s life for herself, calmly goes down the stairs to join her new lover.shivered as the story ended. ‘Do you believe in ghosts, Marta?’ I asked.felt her det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница nod against my bare skin, and I thought she laughed softly. The laugh made me uneasy, and it was with a touch of anger that I replied: ‘There are no ghosts. People don’t come back to haunt the living. I don’t believe people go anywhere after they’re dead.’

‘Not even Heaven?’

‘Especially not Heaven.’

‘So…’ Her voice was teasing: ‘You’re not afraid of the dead?’

‘Why should I be afraid? I’ve nothing to be ashamed of.’ My face was burning and I wondered whether she could feel it. ‘I don’t want to talk det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница about this.’

‘All right.’ Her acceptance was childlike. ‘Then tell me about your day.’ I laughed outright at that: hearing that wifely phrase in her mouth!

‘No, tell me,’ she insisted.I told her: perhaps more than I intended. She was soft and childish in my arms, silent but for occasional little sounds of acquiescence. I told her about Effie and how I had come to dread her; my almost superstitious feeling of being a ghost in my own home; my decision to remove Effie to an asylum where she would no longer be a threat; my conviction that det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница she could destroy me. Effie knew about us now-though how she knew I could not imagine-Effie, the enemy, the silent watcher from the shadows, the ghostchild…the ghost. Effie, who should have stayed asleep, who should have died: Effie, who should have been dead…a while I forgot I was talking to Marta but imagined myself instead before God’s throne, bargaining desperately with Him in His sublime and stupid indifference, bargaining for my life…had no right: I know that now. I took Effie before she was even old enough to understand what love was. I cheated det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница her of her own chance at happiness. I twisted her to suit my own twisted appetites, then cut her away when I tired of her.know what I am.yet, with Marta in my arms, feeling the soft moisture of her breath against my skin, I seemed to glimpse another possibility, one which raised the hairs on my arms in a delicate, ecstatic self-loathing. The words I had spoken to Marta rang on in the hollow of my skull, sweet and taut as the invisible harp behind my eyelids:



‘There are no ghosts. People don’t come det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница back to haunt the living. I don’t believe people go anywhere after they’re dead.’ I realized I had repeated the words aloud, interrupting the flow of agonized self-analysis. But I could not remember a word of what I had spoken.was watching me, appraising. Her face was stone. ‘Henry.’I knew what she was going to say and I flinched, caught in the beam of her deathly gaze. I began to speak, not caring what I was saying, anything to prevent her from speaking the words, the word I could hear resonating pitilessly…

‘Henry.’turned det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница. She was inescapable.

‘Do you remember the day you told me you loved me?’nodded mutely.

‘You made me a promise. Did you mean it?’hesitated. ‘I…’

‘Did you mean it?’

‘Yes.’ My head was pounding, my mouth flooded with a sourness like raw gin.

‘Listen to me, Henry.’ Her voice was low, compelling, intimate as death. ‘You don’t love her any more. You love me now. Don’t you?’nodded.

‘For as long as she’s there I’ll never be yours. You’ll always have to hide. Always come in secret.’breath fluttered through dry lips det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница in an unspoken half-protest, but the terrible purity of her gaze silenced me.

‘You say she knows about us already: she knows she can ruin you. Even to lock her up-if you could do it-might not be enough. She might talk, might make people listen. Do you think her family wouldn’t believe her? There’d be a scandal, whether they did or not. Mud would stick, Henry.’

‘I…’ The knowledge of what she was going to say was like a wall of rushing fire in my brain. What was worse, I wanted her to say it det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница, to loose the wolves inside my skull. Sweet Scheherazade! My head swam deliriously. She was talking about murder: she was talking about silencing Effie for ever…a moment I gave myself entirely up to the images which fluttered through my mind and discovered within myself a kind of arousal at the thought of murder; a feeling so intense that it almost eclipsed my longing for Marta…then Marta’s enchantment reasserted itself and I flung my arms around her, burying my face in the sweetness and softness of her, the scent of lilac and chocolate…I think I was det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница crying.

‘Oh, Marta…’

‘I’m sorry, Henry. I really have loved you, and you’ll never know what these nights together have meant to me…’my abyss I felt my mind questioning frantically; what did she mean? It almost sounded as if…

‘…but after this I know that we can’t see each other again. I…’numbness dropped over all my senses like a frozen blanket. Only the small helpless voice in my mind kept repeating stupidly: this is goodbye, this isn’t what she was meant to say, this is…No! It couldn’t be that! This wasn’t det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница the word I was expecting from her! This wasn’t the promise I wanted to keep. Hysteria welled up in me. From a great distance I could hear my own voice beginning to laugh; a screaming, shrilling laughter like a mad clown’s.

‘No! No! Anything for you…anything…everything…’ The most terrible thing. ‘It doesn’t have to be this…’ O my Marta, my cold Gethsemane…‘I’ll do anything!’last she had heard me. She turned her face into the light, meeting my eye. I repeated my words so that she would know I det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница was telling the truth: ‘I’ll do anything.’nodded slowly, frail and implacable. I forced my voice into something like control.

‘Effie is ill,’ I said. ‘She may not live long. She takes laudanum all the time. Sometimes she forgets how much she has taken.’was watching me still, her eyes eldritch as a cat’s.

‘She might die…at any time.’wasn’t enough: as her gaze flicked away from mine I knew it; she was no Effie, grasping at shadows. I had promised her everything.I blurted out the hateful words, cowardly admission of my already accepted guilt.

‘No det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница-one need ever know.’silence rang between us.sealed it as are traditionally sealed all the Devil’s bargains. Imagine if you can the God’s-eye view: Chester moaning on his rack of barbed flesh with the voice of a demon sweet in his ears-how He must have laughed! I gave my soul for a woman; how that immortal champion of the absurd must have rocked with laughter as our voices rose up out of the night to Him like flies…and how little I cared. Marta was my soul.my initial confession I found her terrifyingly practical det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница. It was she who thought of the details, the plan with which you are already, no doubt, familiar. Quite coldly she outlined my part in her soft, whispering voice, her little hands like ice against my skin.would be quite simple. The next day I would go to the studio as usual to work, returning when night fell. I would instruct Tabby to give Effie her drops as usual. After dinner when Effie went to her room I would bring her a cup of chocolate as I often did, lacing it heavily with laudanum and a little brandy to det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница hide the drug’s medicinal smell. Effie would fall into a heavy sleep which would deepen and deepen until she stopped breathing: a painless release. When it was safe to go out without being seen I would carry her outside where a friend of Marta’s would be ready to help me with a hired carriage. We would drive to the cemetery and take the body to a convenient vault, which we would open with tools provided by Marta’s friend. We would place the body inside and reseal the tomb, with no-one the wiser. If we det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница made sure to choose a family with no living descendants we could be certain that our tampering with the grave would never be discovered. I would be able to tell the police that my wife was mentally ill-Russell would certainly vouch for that-and prone to erratic behaviour. I would play the part of the anxious husband, and eventually the case would be forgotten. We would be free of her at last.was uneasy about only one detail: my proposed accomplice. I understood that I needed someone to help me carry the body and someone to det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница keep a watch in the cemetery, but Marta refused to tell me whom she had in mind, saying that I should trust her. Finally she grew angry, accusing me of trying to find excuses for my cowardice. I remember her sitting on the bare white bed with her legs tucked under her body like Rossetti’s Virgin Mary, her hair wild about her shoulders and her fists clenched like flints.

‘You’re afraid!’ she spat contemptuously. ‘You promise and promise…if thoughts were sins you’d be in Hell by now-but when it comes to one real action you simper and det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница sigh like a girl! Do you think I wouldn’t do it? Do you?’

‘Marta…’ I pleaded.rage was marvellous, all fire and poison.

‘Maa-rtaaa,’ she mocked cruelly. ‘Mmm-aaar-taaaa…’ Suddenly I was twelve again, in the schoolyard, my face pressed into the corner of the doorway, the taste of tears and hate in my mouth (cry-baby, cry-ba-aby, look at the ba-by cry…), and I felt my vision doubling briefly as the tears began to flicker down my cheeks. I could not comprehend her sudden cruelty. For some reason Marta was enraged.

‘Is det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница that all you can do?’ she screamed bitterly. ‘Cry? I ask you to free yourself, to free me, and you stand there like a thwarted schoolboy? I wanted a man, a lover, and you give me nothing! I ask you for blood and you give me water!’

‘M…M-m…’ For a moment I almost said ‘Mother’. The snarl of wires in my mouth had become a broken harp, an Aeolian cavern of pain and confusion. I felt the left side of my face twitch uncontrollably, my eyelid a trapped butterfly beneath my tortured flesh.contempt was det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница too much to endure. I screamed with all the love and hate in my swollen heart. What words there were in my scream-if they were words-I do not know.there was a promise; relenting, she kissed me.am what I am.

soon as I saw him leave Marta’s room and stumble downstairs, I knew our time had come. He had shed his brittle control, the icy, contemptuous mask of his respectability; and what remained had no features, no pretences, simply the stupid scream of tortured flesh and endless desire. The black, sleety wind carried him det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница away like a drowned child, his eyes immense and wondering, so that for an instant I glimpsed the innocent he had once been…I never saw him again. Not in the way you could understand, anyway.was no dawn that morning, but at seven o’clock Mose emerged bleary-eyed from someone else’s bed demanding to see me. He came into the room without knocking, his hair over his eyes and his mouth wry. He looked tired and irritable, and I guessed that his head hurt, for he made straight for the brandy and poured himself a generous glass.

‘Why, Mose det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница,’ I said lightly, ‘you look terrible. You really should look after yourself, my dear.’drained the glass and grimaced. ‘You’d know all about that, wouldn’t you, Fanny dearest?’ he retorted. ‘God knows what that bitch last night put into my drink, but I’ve got a blinding headache. And she had the cheek to charge me four guineas into the bargain!’

‘Last night you thought she was a charming girl,’ I reminded him gently.

‘Well, that was then. She didn’t look a day under forty this morning.’

‘Ingrate! Have some coffee.’ I smiled and poured. ‘All det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница women are illusionists, you know.’

‘You’re all witches,’ he snapped, reaching for his cup. ‘You more than any of them, Fanny. So don’t start trying any of your charm on me this morning; I’m not in the mood.’ He drank for half a minute in sullen silence, then stood up abruptly, slamming his cup down on to the table so hard that I thought it might crack.

‘What is your game, anyway?’ he asked resentfully. ‘I’m tired of waiting, tired of staving off my creditors when I could be getting some money from all det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница this. When are you going to stop playing games, you and Effie, and get down to business?’

‘Sit down, Mose,’ I said kindly.

‘I don’t want to,’ he snapped pettishly. ‘You must think I’m as half-witted as she is. What I want is an answer now. Otherwise, like it or not, I’ll do the whole thing on my own, and you and Effie won’t see a penny of Chester’s money. Understood?’sighed.

‘I see I’ll have to tell you,’ I said.

have to understand that I was furious. I had nothing against det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница either of them-not then, at least-I had waited as Fanny wanted me to wait, without asking any questions. But time was passing and I had had another call from one of my main creditors. As for Effie, I hadn’t spoken to her in weeks. I only saw her when she came to Crook Street and she was pale and listless, with the blank half-witted stare of the laudanum addict she was. Though I felt some contempt for her weakness, I sometimes also felt a pang of regret for the lovely, passionate creature she det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница once was. She wrote to me a dozen times; her letters were desperate, violent and confused, her neat italic writing broken by paragraphs of jagged scrawlings I could hardly decipher. She dared not meet me. The day before I finally confronted Fanny I received a last message, shorter than the rest: a page torn from a schoolbook with no signature and no date. The writing was shapeless, like a child’s; my name headed the note in letters three inches tall:my love my love my love. It seems so long. Have I been ill? Can you remember? It det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница seems I have slept, slept all my life away…and dreamed so many things. I dreamed I was dead, killed by Henry Chester and left in an attic full of clockwork toys. He says I’m mad…but his eyes are like tunnels. Sometimes I hear him at night, when everyone is asleep: I hear him talking. Mose? Do you love her too? Is that why you won’t meet me? Everyone loves her. Sometimes I think that I could die for love of her…my life for her, poor miserable life…but for you. You are my life. In the dim det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница passageways of my sleeping memory you follow me-I hear your laughter. Your hand on my hair: I sleep for a hundred years. Dust settles on my eyelids. I grow old. She doesn’t care: she’ll wait for me. Will you? Sometimes I look into my face in the mirror and I wonder if she’s there waiting. Mose, stop me from sleeping.I was at Oxford I remember going to a party at some student’s rooms; a midnight, back-street affair with illicit brandy and a couple of horse-faced giggling girls from the far side det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница of the town. I remember that someone suggested we try table-rapping and it was with a good deal of merriment that we set up a little coffee-table with chairs in a circle and the letters of the alphabet chalked around the outside. We dimmed the lights, the girls shrieking and the young men hooting with laughter as we settled down to the game. I knocked on the table as soon as the company fell silent, setting the whole cacophony off again.first the glass beneath our hands spun aimlessly on the table: cries of ‘Silence det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница!’ interspersed the laughter and there were indignant cries to the supposed cheats in the party-all of us!, seemingly of its own volition, the glass went flying across the table, spelling out ribald messages about members of the assembled gathering and causing a new outbreak of squealing from the drunken girls. I always had a fair hand at conjuring.then everything changed: my careful manoeuvre was aborted by some more skilled table-rapper. I sought to win back the glass, but it was wrenched from my hand and spun across the table with astounding accuracy. Irritated, I glanced at det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница my partners across the table…and I swear, no-one was touching that glass. No-one.then I knew that it was a trick: I didn’t believe in ghosts, nor do I to this day. But I never found out who the trickster was that night-I had thought my friends all too drunk, or too unimaginative, to carry off such sleight of hand-but the phrases which staggered across the coffee-table in that dark room fifteen years ago, the words which seared my brain in the minutes before my nerve broke and I kicked the table det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница over…don’t know why I’m telling you this. But Effie’s slashed and fractured sentences and those desperate phrases against the table-top might have come from the same lost and broken heart: a voice from the dead.me from sleeping…had her own reasons for keeping Effie away from me. God knows I didn’t care; I was heartily sick of their charade and wished I had never become involved. Instead, Fanny kept me supplied with drink and entertainment while I was at Crook Street and she and Effie held their interminable counsels upstairs. But that wasn’t det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница the worst of it. No.was that name…Marta.name was a sigh, a prayer, a supplication: on Fanny’s lips a kiss, on Henry’s a moan, on Effie’s a benediction of such potency that her entire being was suffused with love and longing…Marta.midnight she walked the dim passageways of the Crook Street house. I felt her light, ironical touch against the nape of my neck as she passed. I caught the scent of her against the curtains, heard her sweetly hoarse, slightly accented voice from the open window, laughing from the damp London fog det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница. I dreamed of her as I had first seen her through the chink in the wall-a burning rose of crimson flesh, a Fury with her hair in flames, laughing through the fire like a madwoman or a goddess…yet there was no Marta.I had to remind myself of the fact for fear I might go mad like all the rest of them. There was no Marta-I knew that: I had seen her reduced to a swirl of red ochre in the bathroom sink, a smear of cosmetics on the white of a linen det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница towel. Like Cinderella, she was built from midnight’s deceitful magic; dawn left nothing of her but a few dyed hairs on a pillow. And yet, if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes…her! Damn all their poisonous games.was no Marta.there was the business with Henry Chester. Oh, don’t think I was having second thoughts. I had no cause to love the man, nor he to love me, but it seemed to me that the whole affair was getting a trifle too eleborate for my taste. I admit I laughed at first at the det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница thought of Effie’s seduction of her own husband-there was something infinitely perverse in the idea which appealed to me-but if you had seen Chester, with his fixed and deathly smile…He looked like a doomed man at Hell’s own border.did they want of me? Damned if I knew! Fanny must have known by then that even if we succeeded in wresting Effie away from Cromwell Square there would be no place for her with me. I wasn’t going to marry her and had never intended to. When she spoke of the future at det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница all, Fanny always said: ‘When we’re together again,’ as if some family reunion was on the cards. I couldn’t see it. Effie live at Crook Street? The more I thought about it, the more absurd it seemed. The sooner I was out of the game, I decided, the better.wasn’t even as if I were seeing any money from it all: the grim masquerade seemed to lurch on indefinitely. Looking back, I suppose I could have broken free then-I would have lost my chance to blackmail Henry Chester, but that was not why I stayed. Call it det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница arrogance if you like: I didn’t want to be bested by a woman. Either way, I fell into their trap neatly enough. I must have been mad.like to think I hesitated at first: the plan was so Gothic, so ludicrous, that it might well have been the libretto for some darkly burlesque operetta. Fanny sat on the sofa and preened herself as she told me, and I, in spite of my spiralling headache, found myself laughing.

‘Fanny, you’re priceless,’ I said. ‘I really did think for a moment that you were serious.’

‘Oh, but det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница I am,’ she said serenely. ‘Very serious.’ She watched me from her cryptic agate eyes for a moment then gave me a secretive half-smile. ‘I’m counting on you, Mose, my dear. Really.’gave a sigh of exasperation. ‘Are you telling me that Effie persuaded Henry to agree to her own murder?’ My laugh was the sick, nervous laughter of hysteria. I cleared my throat, poured myself another glass of brandy and swallowed half of it at once.silence rang between us.

‘Don’t you believe it?’ said Fanny at last.

‘I…I don’t believe Effie det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница…’

‘But it wasn’t Effie.’her! Her voice was smooth as cream and I knew what she was going to say.

‘Damn it, Fanny, there is no Marta!’ I heard my voice crack, high above its normal range, and fought to bring it back under control. ‘There is no Marta. There’s only Effie, who is three parts crazy…and what does she expect to gain from all this? What does she want?’smiled indulgently. ‘You should know that.’ A moment to allow her words to sink in. ‘She and I are both counting on you.’ Her smile became impish det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница.

‘And Marta, of course.’

could not go home to Cromwell Square. The thought of entering the house where she slept, passing her door, maybe brushing against her in the passageway or feeling her mad, accusing stare in the small of my back; watching her drink her chocolate at breakfast or unfold her needlework in the morning-room…and all the while knowing that at midnight she would be dead in some anonymous grave in Highgate, perhaps the very same which sheltered the whore’s child’s unquiet half-sleep…I could not bear it., I made my way in det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница the dark to my studio and tried to sleep. But the wind screamed outside in Effie’s voice, rattling the windows. Twenty grains of chloral was all I dared take. Even they brought no comfort, simply a lethargy of the spirit which quickly shifted to a shivering restlessness. I had a bottle of brandy in one of my cupboards: I tried to drink it but found that my throat had constricted to pinhole-size. Choking, I spat out the burning liquid in a wide arc around me. Suddenly I glimpsed a movement in the far corner of the studio; in the det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница thickest shadow I thought I saw a shifting of drapery…the outline of a woman’s hand…

‘Who’s there?’answer but the wind. ‘I said, who’s there?’ I took a step forwards and she was standing in the furthest corner, her face a pale blur, hands outstretched to claim me. For an instant I sank into total delirium, an incoherent streamer of sound unfurling from my lips…then my groping hands met the frame and the smell of paint and varnish filled my nostrils.

‘Ahhh…’ I struggled to control my voice, dragging it back to its det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница normal range. My mouth was slack; the captured moth beneath my left eyelid desperately fluttering.

‘Sch…Scheherazade.’was better. I said the name again, feeling my mouth take shape again beneath the difficult syllables. I forced myself to touch the painting and my laughter was forced and cracked, but at least it was laughter. There was nothing, nothing to be afraid of, I told myself fiercely. There was no dancing Columbine with empty eye-sockets and carnivorous teeth; no little ghostchild with arms outstretched and chocolate on her fingers; no Prissy Mahoney with her keyhole of blood det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница; no Mother watching from her deathbed with her lovely ravaged face…! I forced myself to turn away from the painting (absurd that I should feel the hammering of Marta’s eyes like nails between my shoulder-blades, pitilessly bisecting the soft white cord of my spine) and walk towards the fire. I looked at my watch. Half past two. I found a book lying face down on a chair and glanced at it idly to pass the time. To my disgust I saw that it was a book of poetry; opening it at random I read:sister’s sleepfell asleep on det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница Christmas Eve:length the long-ungranted shadeweary eyelids overweigh’dpain nought else might yet relieve.childish hand had underscored certain parts of the verse in red pencil and, with a shiver, I realized whose book this was; on the title page the legend euphemia madeleine shelbeck, written in a round, neat hand, made me hurl the book as far away from me as possible into the shadows. Damn her! Was she never to leave me in peace?wind’s voice had reached an unearthly pitch in the chimneys and the rafters; the building was an eyrie of fluttering, shrieking det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница, invisible creatures. I was inside Pandora’s box, a shadow-thing awaiting my release. How could I be afraid of the dark? I was the dark, the essence of the night’s monsters. Ludicrous to think that the monster might be afraid; pathetic to imagine him cowering in the dying firelight on this, the night of his release. I was almost beginning to enjoy the thought when the studio door slammed open and terror sliced at me once more.an instant I actually saw them, my memory’s demons with my mother at their head like a black angel, then det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница an icy gust of wind razored past my head and the door slammed shut. It was then that I saw the cat, Effie’s cat, standing quietly next to the door in a drift of dead leaves blown in by the wind. At first I thought that the leaves were the cat, then I saw its flat, agate eyes gleaming from the doorway, one paw raised with delicate precision, like a beautiful woman’s greeting. As I watched it yawned like a snake and began to lick the outstretched paw with languid grace. For a moment I det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница was frozen by certainty: it was her; the ghostchild, watching me through the cat’s eyes, the ghost of my first murder come to taunt me as I sat here contemplating my second. Could I hear the words?

(whataboutmy what about my what about my story?)

‘Go away!’ I spoke aloud.

(will she scream henry? will she wake and see you? will she smell of lavender and chocolate oh will she henry?)

‘I’m imagining this.’

(are you)

‘There’s no cat here.’

(henry)

‘There’s no cat here!’voice cracked and flew off into the dark like a volley det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница of shots and, as the silence settled around me again, I realized that I was right: what I had taken for a tabby cat standing by the door was really only a curl of brown leaves shifting uneasily in the draught. Oddly, the knowledge did not cheer me but drove a deeper chill into my heart. I turned away, sickened and trembling. I wondered what Marta was doing.thought of her, the strong, sweet certainty of her, cleared my head a little. I imagined her in my arms, and the knowledge that she would soon be mine made det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница my heart thrill with courage. With Marta to help me I could do it, do it without remorse: there would be no black angel at my door, no autumn-cat curled in the shadows…no pale little ghostchild. Not this time. This time, Marta would be mine and we would walk a thousand and one nights together.took five more grains of chloral and was gratified to feel them taking effect almost immediately: the top of my head had become a clear, cold drum of resonances, delightfully floating above my body like a child’s balloon. My thoughts det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница, too, were balloon-like, enclosed and remote, moving with a dreamlike slowness in the dark.five to three. Time spiralled out indefinitely ahead of me…so much time. The seconds were silent breakers rolling across a bleak, grey shore, counting out infinity. I stumbled towards my easel and began to paint.suppose you’ve seen her: some call her my greatest work, though her story is perhaps too close to the dark core of her creator for her to be appealing. I cannot imagine her sharing a gallery with Rossetti’s jaded courtesans or Millais’s spoiled, sugary children det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница. My Triumph of Death is a gateway into my particular hell, an incarnation of every black thought, cold fear, stifled sweetness…she is bone-white and lethal, hair blown up and around her face the points of a dark star, her eyes blind as fists. She stands with her legs apart and her arms raised towards the pitiless unblinking Eye of God in the curdled clouds above her, naked and terrifying in her nakedness, for though nothing human remains in her stark beauty, nothing tender in the pure, violent curve of her lips, she can still arouse desire: the frozen, desperate lust det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница of the grave. In a sense she is more beautiful than she has ever been; red and white as the bloody Host, she stands astride a shattered landscape of human bones, a red, apocalyptic sky at her back.she has Marta’s face she is not Marta, not Effie, not my mother or Prissy Mahoney or the dancing Columbine. Or, if you wish, she is all of them and more. She is your mother, your sister, your sweetheart…the dim, shameful dream you dreamed when the world was young. She is I…she is you…on det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница her head a crown of thorns, at her feet a cat of dead leaves yawning balefully; and across the sensuousness of her snakelike, childlike body, the double triangle formed between her mouth, her breasts and the dim nebula of her pubic hair, the four occult hieroglyphs of the Tetragrammaton: yod-he-vau-he. The secret name of God.Am That I Am.

Дата добавления: 2015-11-04; просмотров: 3 | Нарушение авторских прав


documentbdagogv.html
documentbdagvrd.html
documentbdahdbl.html
documentbdahklt.html
documentbdahrwb.html
Документ det_historyHarris, Pale Sistergothic tale set in 19th-century London, by the author of "The Evil Seed". A domineering and puritanical artist finds, in nine-year-old Effie, the perfect 12 страница