|Newspaper Title||The Daily News (Perth, WA : 1882 - 1950)|
|Trove Title||Adam and Eve|
THE NOVELIST. ADAM AND EVE.
CHAPTER I. "YOU ARE NOT A GENTLEMAN"
"When Adam delved and Eve span Who was then the gentleman?" A grave smile crossed Adam Thorny croft's face as he quoted the old coup- let. The girl to whom he was speak- ing simply shook her head roguishly
at him, and said again— "But you know, Adam, you're not a gentleman." It was that frankly uttered remark of hers which had made him quote the couplet by way of answer; but ap- parently, she was not in the least con- vinced. "No, I suppose not," he said quiet- ly. "And Squire Carnaby is a gentle- man. Well, if he is one, I am not. That's very certain, Eve." The girl did not percieve the gentle irony in his look and voice. She was little more than a child, and her out- look on men and things was, perforce, narrow. How could she be expected to grasp the idea that Adam Thorny- croft, the hard-working farmer, might be a truer gentleman that the white- handed Aristocrat Philip Carnaby, Squire of Nottingby, and master of Nottingby Hall?
Adam was not even the owner of Woodbine Farm. Evera acre was rent- ed from Philip Carnaby. He was just "a son of the soil" —no more. And yet nature had stamped her hall-mark of gentleman on his sun-browned, somewhat rugged-feature face. There was nobility as well as power on his spacious brow, and in his deep-set grey-blue eyes. There was a manly firmness about his full lips, with a hint of manly sweetness, too, when- ever the occasion should require. Altogether, Adam Thornycroft was very far from being an unattractive man, if looked at with discriminating eyes. But whoever expected discrimination —of that sort— from a lovely, laugh- ing girl of seventeen, a creature all dreams and fancies, and nameless be- longings; a creature to whom white hands seem finer things than muscular arms, patrician features, than clever brains, high-bred manners than a man- ly heart?
Foolish, of course; but then, can we expect deep wisdomn from seven- teen? and is not the very foolishness pretty and lovable when it is coupled with a pair of blue eyes like dancing stars, a mouth like a fresh June rose, and a wealth of nut-brown hair clustering about a smooth brow which, for whiteness, might have vied with the lilies on the mere? Adam thought so, and yet, for all his indulgent smile as he looked at the witching face, there was a sharp pain at his heart. He had loved Eve ever since the day when a little creature was left or- old baby, to the farm. Her mother had been Mrs. Thornycroft's dearest friend, and it was only natural that, when the little creature was left or- phaned—with scarcely a relation in the world—Mrs. Thornycroft should try to fill the place of the mother it had lost. Adam hail then been an earnest laced, littlo follow of nine. 'Oh, moth er, call it Evo !' ho had enirontacl, nnd Mrs, Thornycraft remembering i thuf her friend had had u great-aunt numod Evangoline. yielded to too fan i oy of her littlo son. The infant was I named Evangelino, yielded to tho fun ^ its mother ; 'but Adam sot tho fashiou ' in thut house, and his protty play 1 mato was nover called anything but ?Evo.. ' Novri.liut sho had attained tho age *Df Bovonteon, and had completed her '? cducatiou, aha uonsidercil horscm, and not without somo reuson, entitled to ? tho term of gentlewoman. Her fothur had been a clergyman, though poor. i Mrs. Thornyorofl had taken caro ?'? 'that shin should liavo tin excellent etlu cntion.jjher looks were exquisite, her .-, hands and feot wero daintily aristo oratio rJitsp mannew protty and refill : ed. It sho weru not a gentlewoman, ? who could lao claim to that honored , nurno.? ... ' .
i Adam*;nnd sho wero standing in the ' sweet, oild-fasliioned garden at Wood bino Farm ; a garden whero thymu and parsloy, ,nnd mint and luvonder grew r oido by; side with pinks and roses ; ' whoro u few Into primroses clustered ? liko stars nt tho roots of tho coral lndon applo trees, nnd whero gilly llowors nnd lad's-laye perfumed .tho air ? with their sweet, ~ old-fashioned frag rance. . ? „ Adnm wns . nt work' in his shirt \ sleevos, his coat thrown aside. Kyo, in her pretty pink cambric frock, with ? tiainty, hico tucker, leaned against an ? applo Iroo, and watched him with ro guish oyos. 'There's ono thing, Adam,' sho said, 'younvouldn't euro to Ijo a gen tloman, even if you could. You love nothing so much as work, I do bo-, , liovo.' 'And a gentleman doesn't work','. ', said Adam, still with thut pleasant irony, thnt grnvcly indulgent smile still' Urckoring in his eyes, F.vo- didn't pursue the subject, Th'oii' ' cliscimsion 'had arisen out of a petition bIiu had made to him. Sho returned . to it with youth's enpur unllrasinsm. 'Aunt .Tnnet would let mo go to the ball if you asked lier. Oh, Adam, tin — thero'H a dear old fellow, and I'll Jovo you so,' Sho laid a plendinc hand on his. Up i stood quito still, mid suemed to, draw hiH, brealh- shin-ply, An observni1 Bkill 9-1, in- -hiiinan pas.«ion would liavo snen ?\]mi tlmt touch and speech of hors thvillvil him to tho centre of his being,
l.lo' unsweretl rather gravely— 'Mvc, T wonder you, should caro to go' to this. ball. Tho great neojilowill Keep to themselves. They will take no notice of you,' Evo hud her own opinions about that. What lovely r'uI ot seventeon ; but beliovos thai her own loveliness .' is a potent l;oy, able to unlock thn ' doors of ndmimtion and of friendship? .Am^ bosides , Philip Curnuby. hud no ; tiend hor already ; hn had stayed to i, talk to hoc more than twice when they ? root, I 'I fih'ould like to go,' slio Haiti,
without directly answering his objec tion. 'Adam, you are always good to me, Persuade Aunl .lunet, Hhi-'ll sny 'Yes' in a moment if you ask her.' 'If you go, it would mean that I should lmvo to go too ; and I had rather thought of ci'tling out of it.' suld Adam, lie' thought with his mother— Aunt Janet ns Evo always culled her— that tho child was hotter uwuy from (he bull. But he was weak as wnlor when sho looked nt him with those lovely pleading eyes. She had won her little victory, and who know it. Atlnm nlways did as sho asked him. Ilo was tho kindest big brothor in ilio world. 'Well, I'll hco what T can do,' he paid, as ho resumed Inn spade und snt Btoacllly to work, humming to himself ns ho did so — ' 'When Adam delved and Eve span Who was then the gentleman V ' Evo meanwhile Hew into tho house, ami up to her own room, there to tlo bnto with herself tho delicious question us to what sho should wear ut the ball.