"All knowledge that is worth while hurts in the getting."
Sidney got up and wandered around the room, touching its little familiar
objects with tender hands. K. watched her. There was this curious element
in his love for her, that when he was with her it took on the guise of
friendship and deceived even himself. It was only in the lonely hours that
it took on truth, became a hopeless yearning for the touch of her hand or a
glance from her clear eyes.
Sidney, having picked up the minister's picture, replaced it absently, so
that Eve stood revealed in all her pre-apple innocence.
"There is something else," she said absently. "I cannot talk it over with
mother. There is a girl in the ward--"
"Yes. She is quite pretty. She has had typhoid, but she is a little
better. She's--not a good person."
"At first I couldn't bear to go near her. I shivered when I had to
straighten her bed. I--I'm being very frank, but I've got to talk this out
with someone. I worried a lot about it, because, although at first I hated
her, now I don't. I rather like her."
She looked at K. defiantly, but there was no disapproval in his eyes.
"Well, this is the question. She's getting better. She'll be able to go
out soon. Don't you think something ought to be done to keep her
There was a shadow in K.'s eyes now. She was so young to face all this;
and yet, since face it she must, how much better to have her do it
"Does she want to change her mode of life?"
"I don't know, of course. There are some things one doesn't discuss. She
cares a great deal for some man. The other day I propped her up in bed and
gave her a newspaper, and after a while I found the paper on the floor, and
she was crying. The other patients avoid her, and it was some time before
I noticed it. The next day she told me that the man was going to marry some
one else. 'He wouldn't marry me, of course,' she said; 'but he might have
Le Moyne did his best, that afternoon in the little parlor, to provide
Sidney with a philosophy to carry her through her training. He told her
that certain responsibilities were hers, but that she could not reform the
world. Broad charity, tenderness, and healing were her province.