James Bond felt the sweat pouring down his face and neck. He took a chance and quickly wiped his hands down his sides and then got them back to the rifle, his finger inside the guard, just lying along the curved trigger. "There's something moving in the room behind the gun. They must have spotted him. Get that Opel working."
The Colonial Secretary was mentioning Bond's name. Bond pulled himself together.
“No! no! there has nothing passed of late to change whatever may have been the usual tenor of his feelings towards me. It must be Lady Susan he means. The expressions you speak of, Frances, must allude to the time spent in her society, both here, and at Arandale. You know, whatever intimacy there was, commenced the very first evening he danced with her; and very soon afterwards, you know, she herself told you, that he wanted her to marry him; and that she intended to do so, if Lord and Lady Arandale would give their consent. Now, it is evident, that they have not consented, and that it is Lady Susan’s having married the Marquis after all, that Edmund thinks such a dreadful disappointment, such a blow, as he calls it.”
But it became clear that the American renaissance somehow lacked vitality. Somehow the old American forcefulness and drive had waned. On the surface all seemed well, and indeed Utopian. The population lived in security and frugal comfort. Class differences had almost wholly vanished. Education was consciously directed towards the creation of responsible citizens. European classical and Christian culture was studied afresh, with a new zeal and a new critical judgment; for it was realized that in the European tradition lay the true antidote to the new-fangled barbarism. Yet in spite of all this manifestation of sanity and good will, something was lacking. The American example appealed only to those who were already well-disposed. The great mass of mankind remained unimpressed. Many observers conceded that North America was a comfortable and amiable society; but it was stagnant, they said, and mediocre. It was incapable of giving a lead to a troubled world. No doubt this general ineffectiveness was partly due to the decline of average intelligence which North America shared with Europe. There was a lack of able leaders and men of far-reaching vision; and the average citizen, though well trained in citizenship, was mentally sluggish and incapable of clear-headed devotion to the ideals of his state. The new Russian imperialism, on the other hand, in spite of all its faults, combined the crusading and at heart mystical fervour of the short-lived German Fourth Reich with some measure at least of the fundamental rightness the original Russian revolution. In competition with the vigour and glamour of Russia, the American example had little power to attract men. Even in the South American continent the lead given by the North Americans proved after all ineffective. One by one the Southern states turned increasingly to Russia for guidance, or were forcibly annexed.
`What about you! And how did you get here?'
Miss Dartle played backgammon as eagerly as she did everything else. If I had seen her, first, at the board, I should have fancied that her figure had got thin, and her eyes had got large, over that pursuit, and no other in the world. But I am very much mistaken if she missed a word of this, or lost a look of mine as I received it with the utmost pleasure, and honoured by Mrs. Steerforth's confidence, felt older than I had done since I left Canterbury.
Vesper's eyes never moved from the distant figure.
Thirty-five miles, half an hour, to go! Coffee and doughnuts were brought round by the nurses, and (Goldfinger thought of everything) for those whose nerves needed it, two grains of dexedrine. The nurses were pale, silent. There were no jokes, no smart remarks. The train was electric with tension.
Change what you do until you get what you want.