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<- Previous | Table of Contents | Next -> Digital Library-The Awakening by Kate Chopin

Mademoiselle had glided from the Chopin into the quivering
lovenotes of Isolde's song, and back again to the Impromptu with its
soulful and poignant longing.

The shadows deepened in the little room. The music grew
strange and fantastic--turbulent, insistent, plaintive and soft
with entreaty. The shadows grew deeper. The music filled the
room. It floated out upon the night, over the housetops, the
crescent of the river, losing itself in the silence of the upper

Edna was sobbing, just as she had wept one midnight at Grand
Isle when strange, new voices awoke in her. She arose in some agitation
to take her departure. "May I come again, Mademoiselle?" she asked
at the threshold.

"Come whenever you feel like it. Be careful; the stairs and
landings are dark; don't stumble."

Mademoiselle reentered and lit a candle. Robert's letter was
on the floor. She stooped and picked it up. It was crumpled and
damp with tears. Mademoiselle smoothed the letter out, restored it
to the envelope, and replaced it in the table drawer.


One morning on his way into town Mr. Pontellier stopped at the
house of his old friend and family physician, Doctor Mandelet. The
Doctor was a semi-retired physician, resting, as the saying is,
upon his laurels. He bore a reputation for wisdom rather than
skill--leaving the active practice of medicine to his assistants
and younger contemporaries--and was much sought for in matters of
consultation. A few families, united to him by bonds of
friendship, he still attended when they required the services of a
physician. The Pontelliers were among these.

Mr. Pontellier found the Doctor reading at the open window of
his study. His house stood rather far back from the street, in the
center of a delightful garden, so that it was quiet and peaceful at
the old gentleman's study window. He was a great reader. He
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