THE WINDOWveil it as she might, and shrink from the monotony ofbearing that it imposed on her, her beauty was ap-parent. She had been admired. She had been loved.She had entered rooms where mourners sat. Tearshad flown in her presence. Men, and women too, let-ting go the multiplicity of things, had allowed them-selves with her the relief of simplicity. It injuredher that he should shrink. It hurt her. And yet notcleanly, not rightly. That was what she minded,coming as it did on top of her discontent with herhusband; the sense she had now when Mr. Car-michael shuffled past, just nodding to her question,with a book beneath his arm, in his yellow slip-pers, that she was suspected; and that all this de-sire of hers to give, to help, was vanity. For her ownself-satisfaction was it that she wished so instinc-tively to help, to give, that people might say ofher, "O Mrs. Ramsay! dear Mrs. Ramsay . . .Mrs. Ramsay, of course!" and need her and send forher and admire her? Was it not secretly this thatshe wanted, and therefore when Mr. Carmichaelshrank away from her, as he did at this moment,making off to some corner where he did acrosticsendlessly, she did not feel merely snubbed back inher instinct, but made aware of the pettiness ofsome part of her, and of human relations, howflawed they are, how despicable, how self-seeking,65
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