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دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»
این فصل را میتوانید به بهترین شکل و با امکانات عالی در اپلیکیشن «زیبوک» بخوانید
متن انگلیسی فصل
A handsome young man
Not long after the dancing had begun at the party, Marian Almond came up to introduce Catherine to a tall young man. She told Catherine that the young man very much wanted to meet her, and that he was a cousin of Arthur Townsend, the man she was engaged to.
Catherine always felt uncomfortable when meeting new people. The young man, Mr Morris Townsend, was very handsome, and when Marian went away, Catherine stood in front of him, not knowing what to say. But before she could get embarrassed, Mr Townsend began to talk to her with an easy smile.
‘What a delightful party! What a charming house! What an interesting family! What a pretty girl your cousin is!’
Mr Townsend looked straight into Catherine’s eyes. She answered nothing; she only listened, and looked at him. He went on to say many other things in the same comfortable and natural way. Catherine, though silent, was not embarrassed; it seemed right that such a handsome man should talk, and that she should simply look at him.
The music, which had been silent for a while, suddenly began again. He smiled and asked her to dance. Catherine gave no answer, she simply let him put his arm around her, and in a moment they were dancing around the room. When they paused, she felt that she was red, and then, for some moments, she stopped looking at him.
‘Does dancing make you dizzy?’ he asked, in a kind voice. Catherine looked up at him.
‘Yes,’ she murmured, though she did not know why; dancing had never made her dizzy. ‘Then we will sit and talk,’ said Mr Townsend. ‘I will find a good place to sit.’
He found a good place - a charming place; a little sofa in a comer that seemed meant for two persons.
‘We will talk,’ the young man had said; but he still did all the talking. Catherine sat with her eyes fixed on him, smiling, and thinking him very clever. She had never seen anyone so handsome before.
He told her that he was a distant cousin of Arthur Townsend, and Arthur had brought him to introduce him to the family. In fact, he was a stranger in New York - he had not been there for many years. He had been travelling around the world, living in many strange places, and had only come back a month or two before. New York was very pleasant, but he felt lonely.
‘People forget you,’ he said, smiling at Catherine. It seemed to Catherine that no one who had seen him would ever forget him, but she kept this thought to herself.
They sat there for some time. He was very amusing, and Catherine had never heard anyone speak as well as he did - not even an actor in a theatre. And Mr Townsend was not like an actor; he seemed so sincere, so natural.
Then Marian Almond came pushing through the crowd of dancers. She gave a little cry, which made Catherine blush, when she saw the young people still together. She told Mr Townsend that her mother had been waiting for half an hour to introduce him to somebody.
‘We shall meet again,’ he said to Catherine, as he left her.
Her cousin took Catherine by the arm. ‘And what do you think of Morris?’ she asked.
‘Oh, nothing particular,’ Catherine answered, hiding what she really felt for the first time in her life.
‘Oh, I must tell him that!’ cried Marian. ‘It will do him good. He’s so terribly conceited.’
‘Conceited?’ said Catherine, staring at her cousin.
‘So Arthur says, and Arthur knows about him.’
‘Oh, don’t tell him!’ said Catherine.
‘Don’t tell him! I have told him that many times.’
Half an hour later Catherine saw her Aunt Penniman sitting by a window, with Morris Townsend - she already knew the name very well - standing in front of her. He was saying clever things, and Mrs Penniman was smiling.
Catherine moved away quickly; she did not want him to turn round and see her. But she was glad he was talking to Mrs Penniman because it seemed to keep him near to her.
In the carriage, as they drove home, Catherine was very quiet, and Doctor Sloper talked with his sister.
‘Who was that young man you spent so much time with?’ he asked. ‘He seemed very interested in you.’
‘He was not interested in me,’ said Mrs Penniman. ‘He talked to me about Catherine.’
‘Oh, Aunt Penniman!’ Catherine murmured.
‘He is very handsome and very clever,’ her aunt went on. ‘He spoke in a - in a very charming way.’
The Doctor smiled. ‘He is in love with Catherine, then?’
‘Oh, father!’ murmured the girl, thankful that it was dark in the carriage.
‘I don’t know that; but he admired her dress.’
Admiring just the dress, instead of the person, might not seem very enthusiastic, but Catherine did not think this. She was deeply pleased.
Her father looked, with a cool little smile, at her expensive red and gold dress. ‘You see,’ he said, ‘he thinks you have eighty thousand dollars a year.’
‘I don’t believe he thinks of that,’ said Mrs Penniman; ‘he is too fine a gentleman.’
‘He must be extremely fine not to think of that!’
‘Well, he is!’ Catherine cried, before she knew it.
‘I thought you had gone to sleep,’ her father answered. ‘The hour has come!’ he added to himself.
‘Lavinia is going to arrange a romance for Catherine.’
A few days after Mrs Almond’s party, Morris Townsend and his cousin called at Washington Square. Catherine and her aunt were sitting together by the fire in the parlour.
Arthur Townsend sat and talked to Catherine, while his companion sat next to Mrs Penniman. Catherine, usually so easy to please, tonight found Arthur rather uninteresting. She kept looking over at the other side of the room, where Morris Townsend was deep in conversation with her aunt. Every few minutes he looked over at Catherine and smiled, and she wished that she was sitting nearer to him.
Arthur seemed to notice that Catherine was interested in his companion. ‘My cousin asked me to bring him,’ he explained. ‘He seemed to want very much to come. I told him I wanted to ask you first, but he said that Mrs Penniman had invited him.’
‘We are very glad to see him,’ said Catherine. She wished to talk more about him, but she did not know what to say. ‘I never saw him before,’ she went on.
Arthur Townsend stared. ‘But he told me he talked with you for over half an hour the other night.’
‘I mean before the other night. That was the first time.’
‘Oh, he has been away from New York - he has been all round the world.’
‘My aunt likes him very much,’ said Catherine.
‘Most people like him - he’s so brilliant - though I know some people who say my cousin is too clever.’
Catherine listened with extreme interest. If Morris Townsend had a fault, it would naturally be that one, she thought. After a moment she asked, ‘Now that he has come back, will he stay here always?’
‘If he can find something to do,’ said Arthur. ‘He’s looking around for some kind of employment or business, but he can’t find anything.’
‘I am very sorry,’ said Catherine.
‘Oh, he doesn’t mind,’ Arthur said. ‘He isn’t in a hurry.
Catherine thought about this, then asked, ‘Won’t his father take him into his business - his office?’
‘He hasn’t got a father - he has only got a sister,’ said Arthur Townsend. And he looked across at his cousin and began to laugh. ‘Morris, we’re talking about you.’
Morris Townsend paused in his conversation with Mrs Penniman, and stared, with a little smile. Then he stood up.
‘I’m afraid I was not talking about you,’ he said to Catherine’s companion. ‘Though I can’t pretend that Miss Sloper’s name did not enter our conversation.’
Catherine thought that this was a wonderfully clever thing to say, but she was embarrassed by it, and she also got up. Morris Townsend stood looking at her and smiling; he put out his hand to say goodbye. He was going, and though he had not said anything to Catherine, she was still glad that she had seen him.
‘I will tell her what you have said - when you go!’ said Mrs Penniman with a little laugh.
Catherine blushed - she felt they were almost laughing at her. What in the world had this beautiful young man said? She saw that he was looking at her kindly.
‘I have not talked with you,’ he said, ‘and that was what I came for. But it will be a good reason for coming another time. I am not afraid of what your aunt will say when I go.’
After the two young men had left, Catherine, who was still blushing, gave Mrs Penniman a serious look.
‘What did you say you would tell me?’ she asked.
Mrs Penniman smiled and nodded a little. ‘It’s a great secret, my dear child, but he is coming here to court you!’
Catherine was serious still. ‘Is that what he told you?’
‘He didn’t say so exactly, but he left me to guess it. I’m good at guessing.’ Mrs Penniman gave her niece a soft little kiss. ‘You must be very nice to him.’
Catherine stared - she was amazed. ‘I don’t understand you,’ she said. ‘He doesn’t know me.’
‘Oh yes, he does. He knows you more than you think. I have told him all about you.’
‘Oh, Aunt Penniman!’ said Catherine in a frightened voice. ‘He is a stranger - we don’t know him.’
‘My dear Catherine, you know very well that you admire him.’
‘Oh, Aunt Penniman!’ said Catherine again. Perhaps she did admire him - though this did not seem to her a thing to talk about. But she could not believe that this brilliant stranger wished to court her; only a romantic woman like her aunt would believe that.
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