鈥楯an. 31.鈥擨 sometimes think that it is well for me that I have no one to carry cushions after me,鈥攁s the dear A鈥斺€攕 made the boys do in George Square,鈥攐r to watch my face to see if I look pale. I have been enabled to make efforts, for which I might not have thought my frame capable, and have kept my health wonderfully.
He took the second lap more carefully than the first, got across to the second flag, turned at it and made back across the plunging slope for the series of linked S's under the cables. How fast did these bloody gondolas go? Ten, fifteen, twenty miles an hour? This was the latest type. It would be the fastest. Hadn't he read somewhere that the one between Arosa and the Weisshorn did 25? Even as he got into his first S, the tune of the singing cable above him momentarily changed and then went back to its usual whine. That was the gondola passing the first pylon! Bond's knees, the Achilles heel of all skiers, were beginning to ache. He cut his S's narrower, snaking down faster, but now feeling the rutted tracks of the piste under his skis at every turn. Was that a flag away over to the left? The magnesium flares were swaying lower, almost directly over him. Yes. It looked all right. Two more S turns and he would do a traverse schuss to it!
Every now and then I glanced across the room. Always the thin man's eyes were on me, old in crime and its counter-moves, knowing what was in my mind, what defenses I was preparing. I sensed this, but I went on with my little preparations, thinking, as I Lad at the English school, When they hurt me, and I know they're meaning to hurt me, I must somehow hurt them back. When they get me, rape me, kill me, they mustn't find it easy.
"Thank heavens," said Bond. "I couldn't have stood being thrown about by that dam' Commando chap today. Any news of 008?"
Quarrel whistled from somewhere in the main stream. Bond answered and waded out towards him. They came back along the channel. Quarrel splashed the mangrove roots with water where their bodies might have brushed against them. "Kill da smell of us," he explained briefly. He produced his handful of bamboo lengths and began whittling and cutting them. Bond looked to his gun and the spare ammunition. ; They stood still in the pool so as not to stir up more mud.
With most women his manner was a mixture of taciturnity and passion. The lengthy approaches to a seduction bored him almost as much as the subsequent mess of disentanglement. He found something grisly in the inevitability of the pattern of each affair. The conventional parabola - sentiment, the touch of the hand, the kiss, the passionate kiss, the feel of the body, the climax in the bed, then more bed, then less bed, then the boredom, the tears and the final bitterness - was to him shameful and hypocritical. Even more he shunned the mise en scène for each of these acts in the play - the meeting at a party, the restaurant, the taxi, his flat, her flat, then the week-end by the sea, then the flats again, then the furtive alibis and the final angry farewell on some doorstep in the rain.
Slowly, almost incuriously, Bond turned his head.
"No one's ever accused me of it. I've been up at Frome doing a job. I like this part of the island and it crossed my mind to find some place to rent. But I want to be closer to the sea than this. I'll have to look around a bit more. Do you rent rooms by the night?"
'Lord bless my soul!' cried Mr. Spiker.
I seized the opportunity when she was looking down and fell to watching her, at first stealthily, then more and more boldly. Her face struck me as even more charming than on the previous evening; everything in it was so delicate, clever, and sweet. She was sitting with her back to a window covered with a white blind, the sunshine, streaming in through the blind, shed a soft light over her fluffy golden curls, her innocent neck, her sloping shoulders, and tender untroubled bosom. I gazed at her, and how dear and near she was already to me! It seemed to me I had known her a long while and had never known anything nor lived at all till I met her. . . . She was wearing a dark and rather shabby dress and an apron; I would gladly, I felt, have kissed every fold of that dress and apron. The tips of her little shoes peeped out from under her skirt; I could have bowed down in adoration to those shoes. . . . ‘And here I am sitting before her,’ I thought; ‘I have made acquaintance with her . . . what happiness, my God!’ I could hardly keep from jumping up from my chair in ecstasy, but I only swung my legs a little, like a small child who has been given sweetmeats.
Literary criticism in the present day has become a profession — but it has ceased to be an art. Its object is no longer that of proving that certain literary work is good and other literary work is bad, in accordance with rules which the critic is able to define. English criticism at present rarely even pretends to go so far as this. It attempts, in the first place, to tell the public whether a book be or be not worth public attention; and, in the second place, so to describe the purport of the work as to enable those who have not time or inclination for reading it to feel that by a short cut they can become acquainted with its contents. Both these objects, if fairly well carried out, are salutary. Though the critic may not be a profound judge himself; though not unfrequently he be a young man making his first literary attempts, with tastes and judgment still unfixed, yet he probably has a conscience in the matter, and would not have been selected for that work had he not shown some aptitude for it. Though he may be not the best possible guide to the undiscerning, he will be better than no guide at all. Real substantial criticism must, from its nature, be costly, and that which the public wants should at any rate be cheap. Advice is given to many thousands, which, though it may not be the best advice possible, is better than no advice at all. Then that description of the work criticised, that compressing of the much into very little — which is the work of many modern critics or reviewers — does enable many to know something of what is being said, who without it would know nothing.