English

|金庸群侠传x无限元宝版|袁浩源|The News

鈥楽trange to say, the Mission has just bought a house in the midst of the City; not hired, but bought it out and out. I went over it yesterday.... There is room on that ground to build a church on. And, please God, we shall have a church there some day. Nil desperandum.鈥橖/p>

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I do not think that I ever toadied any one, or that I have acquired the character of a tuft-hunter. But here I do not scruple to say that I prefer the society of distinguished people, and that even the distinction of wealth confers many advantages. The best education is to be had at a price as well as the best broadcloth. The son of a peer is more likely to rub his shoulders against well-informed men than the son of a tradesman. The graces come easier to the wife of him who has had great-grandfathers than they do to her whose husband has been less — or more fortunate, as he may think it. The discerning man will recognise the information and the graces when they are achieved without such assistance, and will honour the owners of them the more because of the difficulties they have overcome — but the fact remains that the society of the well-born and of the wealthy will as a rule be worth seeking. I say this now, because these are the rules by which I have lived, and these are the causes which have instigated me to work.

Peggotty was dressed as usual, in her neat and quiet mourning; but Mr. Barkis bloomed in a new blue coat, of which the tailor had given him such good measure, that the cuffs would have rendered gloves unnecessary in the coldest weather, while the collar was so high that it pushed his hair up on end on the top of his head. His bright buttons, too, were of the largest size. Rendered complete by drab pantaloons and a buff waistcoat, I thought Mr. Barkis a phenomenon of respectability.Goldfinger allowed himself a half-smile of sympathy. 'That is excellent news, Miss Galore. And now,' he turned to face across the table, 'Mr Springer, might we ask if you have made up your mind?' One striking aspect of culture was a vast development of the technique of personal intercourse. Language blossomed into a great forest of terms for all the new subtleties of emotion and intuition, and all the types and shades of personality. The citizen of the new world could by the use of this rich linguistic symbolism become intimately aware of a stranger’s personality in an hour. There was also a subtle ideography of psychological and spiritual phenomena. By the careful drawing of a number of Chinese-looking symbols an artist who was something between a novelist and an abstract painter could present the essential form of the intercourse of several human beings from birth to death. In comparison with these ideograms, verbal language, though so greatly improved, was a cumbersome medium. A single meticulously inscribed page could convey a whole biography. Thus arose a new visual art, which, by means of highly abstract signs charged with the emotional and intellectual experience of the race, obtained the far-reaching effect of great poetry. I had now leisure to examine the purse. It was a stiff leather purse, with a snap, and had three bright shillings in it, which Peggotty had evidently polished up with whitening, for my greater delight. But its most precious contents were two half-crowns folded together in a bit of paper, on which was written, in my mother's hand, 'For Davy. With my love.' I was so overcome by this, that I asked the carrier to be so good as to reach me my pocket-handkerchief again; but he said he thought I had better do without it, and I thought I really had, so I wiped my eyes on my sleeve and stopped myself. "I am, as your Chief has told you, an adviser to H.M. Customs and Excise in matters concerning antique jewelry and similar works of art. The declared value of the package was ?100,000. This was unusual. There are methods of opening such packages clandestinely. The package was opened-under a Home Office Warrant, of course-and I was called in to examine the contents and give a valuation. I immediately recognized the Emerald Sphere from the account and sketch of it given in Mr. Kenneth Snowman's definitive work on Fabergй. I said that the declared price might well be on the low side. But what I found of particular interest was the accompanying document which gave, in Russian and French, the provenance of this priceless object." Dr. Fanshawe gestured towards a photostat of what appeared to be a brief family tree that lay on the desk in front of M. "That is a copy I had made. Briefly, it states that the Sphere was commissioned by Miss Freudenstein's grandfather directly from Fabergй in 1917-no doubt as a means of turning some of his rubles into something portable and of great value. On his death in 1918 it passed to his brother and thence, in 1950, to Miss Freudenstein's mother. She, it appears, left Russia as a child and lived in White Russian йmigrй circles in Paris. She never married, but gave birth to this girl, Maria, illegitimately. It seems that she died last year and that some friend or executor, the paper is not signed, has now forwarded the Sphere to its rightful owner, Miss Maria Freudenstein. I had no reason to question this girl, although as you can imagine my interest was most lively, until last month Sotheby's announced that they would auction the piece, described as 'the property of a lady' in a week from today. On behalf of the British Museum and, er, other interested parties, I then made discreet inquiries and met the lady, who, with perfect composure, confirmed the rather unlikely story contained in the provenance. It was then that I learned that she worked for the Ministry of Defense and it crossed my rather suspicious mind that it was, to say the least of it, odd that a junior clerk, engaged presumably on sensitive duties, should suddenly receive a gift to the value of ?100,000 or more from abroad. I spoke to a senior official in M.I.5 with whom I have some contact through my work for H.M. Customs and I was in due course referred to this, er, department." Dr. Fanshawe spread his hands and gave Bond a brief glance. "And that, Commander, is all I have to tell you."

Coming in one day to dinner from a rather long walk, I learnt with amazement that I was to dine alone, that my father had gone away and my mother was unwell, did not want any dinner, and had shut herself up in her bedroom. From the faces of the footmen, I surmised that something extraordinary had taken place. . . . I did not dare to cross-examine them, but I had a friend in the young waiter Philip, who was passionately fond of poetry, and a performer on the guitar. I addressed myself to him. From him I learned that a terrible scene had taken place between my father and mother (and every word had been overheard in the maids’ room; much of it had been in French, but Masha the lady’s-maid had lived five years’ with a dressmaker from Paris, and she understood it all); that my mother had reproached my father with infidelity, with an intimacy with the young lady next door, that my father at first had defended himself, but afterwards had lost his temper, and he too had said something cruel, ‘reflecting on her age,’ which had made my mother cry; that my mother too had alluded to some loan which it seemed had been made to the old princess, and had spoken very ill of her and of the young lady too, and that then my father had threatened her. ‘And all the mischief,’ continued Philip, ‘came from an anonymous letter; and who wrote it, no one knows, or else there’d have been no reason whatever for the matter to have come out at all.’

At last a new invention, one of the very few which the declining species managed to achieve, brought temporary aid. A biochemist produced a method of putting human beings into a state of suspended animation from which, he said, they could be easily wakened, ‘fresh and young’, after a sleep of many years. The world-government, believing that unemployment was a passing phase, and that later on there would be a great need of labour, set about building in every country a system of cold-storage warehouses where unwanted human beings could be deposited until the times changed. The unemployed and their families were forcibly stored in these warehouses. The struggling creatures were chained down, lying shoulder to shoulder on tiers of shelves inside huge tanks, which were then filled first with a succession of gases and finally with a preserving liquid. Millions of men, women, and children in almost every country were thus stored for future use. Though the lives of the workers were almost intolerably arid and distressful, they did all in their power to avoid being sent to the cold-storage houses. The will for the light expressed itself in them as a blind will for active life, however abject. But a few welcomed this opportunity of escape, without irrevocable extinction; believing that in their next phase of active life they would have better opportunities of expressing themselves. In most of these, the acquiescence in suspended animation was at bottom an expression of the will for darkness, though rationalized to satisfy the still smouldering will for light. For the individual in whom the will for the light is strong and clear finds his heart inextricably bound up with the struggle of the forces of light in his native place and time. Much as he may long for the opportunity of fuller self-expression in a happier world, he knows that for him self-expression is impossible save in the world in which his mind is rooted. The individual in whom the will for the light is weak soon persuades himself that his opportunity lies elsewhere. And so, as the spirit of the race was progressively undermined through ever-deteriorating physical and psychological conditions, acquiescence in ‘the deep sleep’ became more and more widespread.

The Du Ponts looked at each other.