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مجموعه: کتاب های فوق متوسط / کتاب: لورنا دون / درس 6

کتاب های فوق متوسط

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Chapter 5 Return to the Valley

Soon after Uncle Reuben went home, I decided to visit the Doone valley again. I put on expensive new clothes, forgetting about the effect of water on them. I wanted to look my best. I walked to the waterfall that I had once climbed up. I was a big man now, and the whirlpool and the rocks seemed smaller than I remembered. I climbed up behind the waterfall, as I had done before, and I soon reached the top.

I hid behind the rock and looked out. Spring was very early that year. Already there were fresh young leaves on the trees and small yellow flowers in the grass. The sky was very blue and the birds were singing sweet love songs.

Then I heard a sweet voice, sweeter than all the birds. It was the voice of Lorna Doone. I stayed behind the rocks, because I was afraid that the sweet singer would see me and run away. After a few minutes I looked out and saw her coming towards me, walking by the side of the stream. I could not see her face clearly.

I saw only that her lovely dark hair had white flowers in it. It was sunset, and the soft light over the western hills made shadows behind her. Even now, when I see the sunset, I think of her on that day.

I came out from behind the rocks, and she turned to run away.

I fell down on the grass, as I had fallen seven years ago when I reached the top of the waterfall.

‘Lorna Doone,’ I said. She turned round and smiled. I knew that she had recognized me, but she pretended to be angry.

‘Who are you, sir?’ she cried. ‘And how do you know my name?’

‘I’m John Ridd,’ I answered. ‘The boy who climbed up the waterfall seven years ago.’

‘Yes, I remember.You were so frightened, and hid here in the water. But you’ve forgotten how dangerous this place is.’

I saw that she was afraid for me. Her soft, bright eyes watched me as she spoke, and I could not answer her. I knew that I would love her all my life, but I did not think I was good enough for her. It would be better, I thought, if I left immediately.

‘Miss Lorna, I’ll go,’ I said. ‘I can see that you’re afraid. I know you’d be sad if they killed me. Try to think of me sometimes. I’ll come again, and bring you some fresh eggs from our hens.’

‘Thank you very much,’ she said, ‘but you mustn’t come to look for me.You can leave the eggs in the hole in the rocks that I showed you.’

Then she smiled, and I wanted so much to find the way to her heart. She held her hand out to me and I touched it softly, then turned and climbed back down the rock.

All that week I dreamed of Lorna Doone. I could not work for very long at anything, and everybody thought I was ill. Our servant, John Fry, told people that a mad dog had bitten me. My mother almost believed him. In the evening she sat beside me and asked me questions that I did not want to answer. I only wanted to sit by the fire and think of Lorna Doone.

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