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A Changed Man 17

一个悔过自新的人 17
This was the first time she had seen or heard of d’Urberville since she had left Trantridge.
And although he stood there openly as a preacher,as a religious man,she still felt afraid of him.
He had changed his clothes,his hair,his moustache and his expression,but could she really believe that he had changed his most secret thoughts and beliefs?
As soon as she recovered from her surprise,she moved away so that he would not notice her.
But he suddenly caught sight of her,and the effect on him was electric.
His enthusiasm faded,his voice hesitated,his lips trembled,his eyes dropped in confusion.Tess walked rapidly away along the road.
However,as she walked she felt he must be looking at her back as she walked away.
And now she knew she could never escape the past,as she had hoped.
Reminders of her past would surround her until she died.
As she walked uphill she heard footsteps behind her,and,turning,saw that it was the one person in the whole world she did not want to meet this side of the grave.
‘Tess!’he said.‘I'm Alec d’Urberville!’
‘I see you are,’she said coldly.They walked on together.
‘You may wonder why I'm following you.Well,I feel you are the person I would most like to save from hell.So I have come to do that.’
‘Have you saved yourself?’Tess asked bitterly.
‘God has done it all,not me!I must tell you how I came to believe in Him.Have you ever heard of the parson of Emminster,old Mr Clare?A very strict,sincere man.’
‘I have,’said Tess.
‘Well,he came to Trantridge once and tried to show me how wicked my life was.I insulted him at the time.
But later my mother died,and somehow I began to think about what old Mr Clare said.Since then my one desire has been to help others to understand God too…’
‘Don't go on!’cried Tess.‘I can't believe in such a sudden change!I almost hate you for talking to me like this, when you know how you've ruined my life!
You enjoy yourself for a while and then you make sure of your place in heaven!’As she spoke she looked him full in the face with her great beautiful eyes.
‘Don't look at me like that!’said Alec.‘Your eyes remind me of—well,women's faces have too much power over me.Don't look at me!It might be dangerous for you!’
Eventually they came to a crossroads,where a strange stone stood.It was a lonely,unfriendly place,where people did not like to stay for long.Alec stopped here.
‘I must go to the right here.I'm preaching at six this evening.Tell me,how has your life been since we last met?’
Tess told him about the baby.Alec was shocked.
‘You should have told me!But before we part,come,put your hand on this stone.It was once a holy cross.
I'm afraid of your power over me.Swear on the cross that you will never tempt me into wickedness!’
‘Good God!How can you ask such an unnecessary thing!I don't want to see you ever again!’
‘No,but swear it.’
Tess placed her hand on the stone and swore.
‘I shall pray for you,’called Alec as he walked away.‘Who knows,we may meet again!’
Tess went on her way,feeling upset,and soon met a man on the road.
He told her that the cross was not religious,but marked the place where a criminal was put to death and buried.
Trembling a little at this information,she finally arrived at Flintcomb-Ash.
One day the following week when Tess was working in the fields as usual,Alec d’Urberville came to see her.
He explained to her that he intended to sell his land at Trantridge and go to help poor people in Africa.
‘Will you help me put right the wicked thing I did to you?Will you be my wife?’
‘Oh no,sir!’she cried,horrified.
‘Why not?’Disappointment was visible in his face.It was not only duty which pushed him to make this offer,but also his old passion for her.
‘You know I don't love you,’answered Tess.‘In fact,I love somebody else.’
‘Perhaps that is only a passing feeling…’ ‘No!’
‘Yes!Why not?You must tell me!’
‘Well,then… I have married him.’
‘Ah!’he cried and looked hard at her.
‘It's a secret here,’she begged.‘Please don't tell anybody.’
‘Who is he?’asked d’Urberville.‘Where is he?Why isn't he here to look after you?What sort of husband can he be,leaving you to work like this?’
‘Don't ask!’cried Tess,her eyes flashing.
‘Your eyes!’whispered Alec.‘I thought I no longer felt anything for you,but when I look into your eyes…’He took her hand.
She pulled it quickly away.
‘Go now,please,in the name of your new religion,go!Respect me and my husband!’
‘Don't worry,I can control myself.I just hoped that our marriage would take away the bad in both of us.But that plan is no good now.’He walked slowly away,his head bent in thought.
The farmer approached at that moment and was angry with Tess for wasting time talking to a stranger.
Tess preferred hard words from this man of stone to sweet ones from Alec d’Urberville.
For a moment,however,she imagined escaping from her present hard life by marrying Alec,but rejected it immediately.
At home that night she began a letter to Clare,telling him of her great love for him.
Reading between the lines he would have seen her secret fear for the future.
But again she could not finish the letter,thinking of his offer to lzz,and so he never received it.
On a Sunday in February she was eating her lunch in the cottage where she lived,when d’Urberville knocked at the door.He rushed in and threw himself into a chair.
‘Tess!’he cried desperately.‘I can't help it!I can't stop thinking of you!Pray for me,Tess!’
Tess did not pity him.‘I cannot because I don't believe God would change His plans just because I asked Him.’
‘Who told you that?’
‘My husband.’
‘Ah,your dear husband… Tell me what he believes.’
Tess explained,as clearly as she could remember,Angel's beliefs.Alec watched her closely.
‘The fact is,you just believe whatever he says.That's just like you women!’
‘Ah,that's because he knows everything!’Tess replied with enthusiasm.‘What is good enough for him is good enough for me.’
‘H'm,interesting,’murmured d’Urberville.‘Perhaps he understands religion better than old Mr Clare.
Perhaps he's right not to attach too much importance to the Bible and to fixed ideas.
Perhaps I was wrong to become a preacher.Today I should be preaching at half-past two,and here I am!My passion for you was too strong for me!’
‘You have let all those people down?They are waiting for you!’
‘What do I care?You are the one woman I have always wanted.
Why have you tempted me away from religion?I can't resist you!’His black eyes flashed passionately.He advanced towards her.
‘I couldn't help your seeing me again!’cried Tess,moving nervously away from him.‘Please leave me!Remember I am married!Remember I can't defend myself!’
Alec stopped,turned,and went out without another word.But he went on thinking of Angel's religious logic,as explained by Tess.
It seemed to make sense.‘That clever husband doesn't know that his ideas may lead me back to her!’he laughed to himself.
In March the threshing-machine came for a day to Flintcomb-Ash.
It was a huge red machine which ate all the corn the farm-workers could feed it.Next to it stood the engine which ran it,and the engineer.
He lived in a world of fire and smoke,and was permanently black,as if he came from hell.
The farmer put Tess next to the threshing-machine,so that she had the hardest and most tiring job of all.
She had little chance to talk or rest,and at lunch time was about to start eating when she noticed d’Urberville approaching.
He had Changed his parson's clothes and now looked just like the young gentleman she had first met at Trantridge.
‘I am here again,you see,’he said,smiling at her.
‘Why do you bother me like this?’she cried.
‘You trouble me!Your eyes look at me night and day.I can't forget them.
Tess,when you told me about that child of ours,my feelings for you became strong again.I have lost interest in religion and it is your fault!’
‘You have stopped preaching?’asked Tess,shocked.
‘I have.What a lot of stupid people they are to listen to a preacher anyway!And I am convinced that your wonderful husband's views are better than old Parson Clare's.
I don't know how I became so enthusiastic!So now,here I am,my love,just as in the old times!’
‘Not like that at all,no,now it's different!’she said firmly.‘Oh why couldn't you stay religious?’
‘Because you've explained your husband's ideas so well to me that I accept them!Ha ha!But seriously,Tess,you need help.
I am here and this husband of yours is not.Come with me!My carriage is waiting the other side of the field!You have tempted me,now share my life for ever!’He put an arm round her waist.
Tess was red with anger but said nothing.She picked up a heavy leather glove and hit him in the face with it.
It was an action which her ancestors must have often practised.Alec jumped up and wiped the blood from his mouth.
‘Remember one thing!’he said angrily,only just controlling himself as he held her by the shoulders.
‘Remember,my lady,if you are any man's wife,you are mine!I will have you again!I'll come back for an answer later on!’
So he left,and the farm-workers started the afternoon's threshing.It went on until the evening,as the work had to be finished that day.
Tess became more and more exhausted and was near to fainting when they finally stopped.Alec d’Urberville,who had been waiting for this moment,appeared at her side.
‘You are so weak,’he said,holding her arm.‘I've told the farmer he should not use women for work with the threshing-machine.It's too hard.I'll walk home with you.’
‘Oh yes,please do!’murmured Tess,too tired to be afraid of him.‘You are kind sometimes.And at least you wanted to put right the wrong by offering to marry me.’
‘If I can't marry you,at least I can help you.I have finished with religion.But you must trust me!I have enough money to help your family and make them comfortable.’
‘Have you seen them lately?’asked Tess quickly.‘God knows they need help…but no—no,I can take nothing from you,either for them or for me!Please leave me alone!’
As soon as she reached her room she wrote a passionate letter to Angel.My own husband,
I must call you that.I must ask you for help—I have no one else!I am so open to temptation,Angel!I cannot tell you who it is.
Can't you come to me now,before anything terrible happens?I know you are far away,but I need help!
I know I deserved the punishment you gave me,but please,Angel,please be kind to me!If you would come,I could die in your arms!
I live only for you.Don't think I shall be bitter because you left me.I am so lonely without you,my darling!
Haven't you ever felt one little bit of your love for me at the dairy?I am the same woman you fell in love with then,the very same.As soon as I met you,the past was dead for me.Can't you see this?
How silly I was to trust that you would always love me!I ought to have known I couldn't be so lucky.
People say I am still rather pretty,Angel.But I don't care about my looks because you are not here.
If you won't come to me,could I come to you?I'm so worried!I'm afraid I may fall into some wicked trap.Save me from what threatens me!
Your faithful heartbroken Tess
你忠实的心碎的妻子 苔丝

重点单词   查看全部解释    
spoke [spəuk]


v. 说,说话,演说

confusion [kən'fju:ʒən]


n. 混乱,混淆,不确定状态

faithful ['feiθfəl]


adj. 如实的,忠诚的,忠实的

permanently ['pə:mənəntli]


adv. 永久地

attach [ə'tætʃ]


v. 附上,系上,贴上,使依恋

logic ['lɔdʒik]


n. 逻辑,逻辑学,条理性,推理

understand [.ʌndə'stænd]


vt. 理解,懂,听说,获悉,将 ... 理解为,认为<

leather ['leðə]


n. 皮革,皮制品
adj. 皮革制的

tiring ['taiəriŋ]


adj. 令人疲倦的,麻烦的

criminal ['kriminl]


adj. 犯罪的,刑事的,违法的
n. 罪犯


关键字: 苔丝