“Mrs. Ramsay!" Lily cried, “Mrs. Ramsay!"But nothing happened. The pain increased. Thatanguish could reduce one to such a pitch of im-becility, she thought! Anyhow the old man had notheard her. He remained benignant, calm—if onechose to think it, sublime. Heaven be praised, noone had heard her cry that ignominious cry, stoppain, stop! She had not obviously taken leave of hersenses. No one had seen her step off her strip ofboard into the waters of annihilation. She remaineda skimpy old maid, holding a paint-brush.

And now slowly the pain of the want, and thebitter anger (to be called back, just as she thoughtshe would never feel sorrow for Mrs. Ramsay again.Had she missed her among the coffee cups at break-fast? not in the least) lessened; and of their anguishleft, as antidote, a relief that was balm in itself, andalso, but more mysteriously, a sense of some onethere, of Mrs. Ramsay, relieved for a moment ofthe weight that the world had put on her, stayinglightly by her side and then (for this was Mrs.Ramsay in all her beauty) raising to her forehead awreath of white flowers with which she went. Lilysqueezed her tubes again. She attacked that problemof the hedge. It was strange how clearly she saw269

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