Online sell secrets to make money

Online sell secrets to make money

An artist might have had some such poetic fancy, and would certainly have looked lovingly on the alluring colors and forms of decay. But Miss Greeby was no artist, and prided herself upon being an aggressively matter-of-fact young woman. With her big boots slapping the ground and her big hands thrust into the pockets of her mannish jacket, she bent her head in a meditative fashion and trudged briskly onward. What romance her hard nature was capable of, was uppermost now, but it had to do strictly with her personal feelings and did not require the picturesque autumn landscape to improve or help it in any way. One man's name suggested romance to bluff, breezy Clara Greeby, and that name was Noel Lambert. She murmured it over and over again to her heart, and her hard face flushed into something almost like beauty, as she remembered that she would soon behold its owner. "But he won't care," she said aloud, and threw back her head defiantly: then after a pause, she breathed softly, "But I shall make him care."

If she hoped to do so, the task was one which required a great amount of skill and a greater amount of womanly courage, neither of which qualities Miss Greeby possessed. She had no skill in managing a man, as her instincts were insufficiently feminine, and her courage was of a purely rough-and-tumble kind. She could have endured hunger and thirst and cold: she could have headed a forlorn hope: she could have held to a sinking ship: but she had no store of that peculiar feminine courage which men don't understand and which women can't explain, however much they may exhibit it. Miss Greeby was an excellent comrade, but could not be the beloved of any man, because of the very limitations of semi-masculinity upon which she prided herself. Noel Lambert wanted a womanly woman, and Lady Agnes was his ideal of what a wife should be. Miss Greeby had in every possible way offered herself for the post, but Lambert had never cared for her sufficiently to endure the thought of passing through life with her beside him. He said she was "a good sort"; and when a man says that of a woman, she may be to him a good friend, or even a platonic chum, but she can never be a desirable wife in his eyes. What Miss Greeby lacked was sex, and lacking that, lacked everything. It was strange that with her rough common sense she could not grasp this want. But the thought that Lambert required what she could never give—namely, the feminine tenderness which strong masculine natures love—never crossed her very clear and mathematical mind.

So she was bent upon a fool's errand, as she strode towards the Abbot's Wood, although she did not know it. Her aim was to capture Lambert as her husband; and her plan, to accomplish her wish by working on the heart-hunger he most probably felt, owing to the loss of Agnes Pine. If he loved that lady in a chivalrous fashion—and Miss Greeby believed that he did—she was absolutely lost to him as the wife of another man. Lambert would never degrade her into a divorce court appearance. And perhaps, after all, as Miss Greeby thought hopefully, his love for Sir Hubert's wife might have turned to scorn that she had preferred money to true love. But then, again, as Miss Greeby remembered, with a darkening face, Agnes had married the millionaire so as to save the family estates from being sold. Rank has its obligation, and Lambert might approve of the sacrifice, since he was the next heir to the Garvington title. "We shall see what his attitude is," decided Miss Greeby, as she entered the Abbot's Wood, and delayed arranging her future plans until she fully understood his feelings towards the woman he had lost. In the meantime, Lambert would want a comrade, and Miss Greeby was prepared to sink her romantic feelings, for the time being, in order to be one.

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The forest—which belonged to Garvington, so long as he paid the interest on the mortgage—was not a very large one. In the old days it had been of greater size and well stocked with wild animals; so well stocked, indeed, that the abbots of a near monastery had used it for many hundred years as a hunting ground. But the monastery had vanished off the face of the earth, as not even its ruins were left, and the game had disappeared as the forest grew smaller and the district around became more populous. A Lambert of the Georgian period—the family name of Lord Garvington was Lambert—had acquired what was left of the monastic wood by winning it at a game of cards from the nobleman who had then owned it. Now it was simply a large patch of green in the middle of a somewhat naked county, for Hengishire is not remarkable for woodlands. There were rabbits and birds, badgers, stoats, and such-like wild things in it still, but the deer which the abbots had hunted were conspicuous by their absence. Garvington looked after it about as much as he did after the rest of his estates, which was not saying much. The fat, round little lord's heart was always in the kitchen, and he preferred eating to fulfilling his duties as a landlord. Consequently, the Abbot's Wood was more or less public property, save when Garvington turned crusty and every now and then cleared out all interlopers. But tramps came to sleep in the wood, and gypsies camped in its glades, while summer time brought many artists to rave about its sylvan beauties, and paint pictures of ancient trees and silent pools, and rugged lawns besprinkled with rainbow wild flowers. People who went to the Academy and to the various art exhibitions in Bond Street knew the Abbot's Wood fairly well, as it was rarely that at least one picture dealing with it did not appear.

Miss Greeby had explored the wood before and knew exactly where to find the cottage mentioned by Lady Garvington. On the verge of the trees she saw the blue smoke of the gypsies' camp fires, and heard the vague murmur of Romany voices, but, avoiding the vagrants, she took her way through the forest by a winding path. This ultimately led her to a spacious glade, in the centre of which stood a dozen or more rough monoliths of mossy gray and weather-worn stones, disposed in a circle. Probably these were all that remained of some Druidical temple, and archaeologists came from far and near to view the weird relics. And in the middle of the circle stood the cottage: a thatched dwelling, which might have had to do with a fairy tale, with its whitewashed walls covered with ivy, and its latticed windows, on the ledges of which stood pots of homely flowers. There was no fence round this rustic dwelling, as the monoliths stood as guardians, and the space between the cottage walls and the gigantic stones was planted thickly with fragrant English flowers. Snapdragon, sweet-william, marigolds, and scented clove carnations, were all to be found there: also there was thyme, mint, sage, and other pot-herbs. And the whole perfumed space was girdled by trees old and young, which stood back from the emerald beauty of untrimmed lawns. A more ideal spot for a dreamer, or an artist, or a hermit, or for the straying prince of a fairy tale, it would have been quite impossible to find. Miss Greeby's vigorous and coarse personality seemed to break in a noisy manner—although she did not utter a single word—the enchanted silence of the solitary place.

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However, the intruder was too matter-of-fact to trouble about the sequestered liveliness of this unique dwelling. She strode across the lawns, and passing beyond the monoliths, marched like an invader up the narrow path between the radiant flower-beds. From the tiny green door she raised the burnished knocker and brought it down with an emphatic bang. Shortly the door opened with a pettish tug, as though the person behind was rather annoyed by the noise, and a very tall, well-built, slim young man made his appearance on the threshold. He held a palette on the thumb of one hand, and clutched a sheaf of brushes, while another brush was in his mouth, and luckily impeded a rather rough welcome. The look in a pair of keen blue eyes certainly seemed to resent the intrusion, but at the sight of Miss Greeby this irritability changed to a glance of suspicion. Lambert, from old associations, liked his visitor very well on the whole, but that feminine intuition, which all creative natures possess, warned him that it was wise to keep her at arm's length. She had never plainly told her love; but she had assuredly hinted at it more or less by eye and manner and undue hauntings of his footsteps when in London. He could not truthfully tell himself that he was glad of her unexpected visit. For quite half a minute they stood staring at one another, and Miss Greeby's hard cheeks flamed to a poppy red at the sight of the man she loved.

"Well, Hermit." she observed, when he made no remark. "As the mountain would not come to Mahomet, the prophet has come to the mountain."

"The mountain is welcome," said Lambert diplomatically, and stood aside, so that she might enter. Then adopting the bluff and breezy, rough-and-ready-man-to-man attitude, which Miss Greeby liked to see in her friends, he added: "Come in, old girl! It's a pal come to see a pal, isn't it?"

"Rather," assented Miss Greeby, although, woman-like, she was not entirely pleased with this unromantic welcome. "We played as brats together, didn't we?

"Yes," she added meditatively, when following Lambert into his studio, "I think we are as chummy as a man and woman well can be."

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"True enough. You were always a good sort, Clara. How well you are looking—more of a man than ever."

"Oh, stop that!" said Miss Greeby roughly.

"Why?" Lambert raised his eyebrows. "As a girl you always liked to be thought manly, and said again and again that you wished you were a boy."

"I find that I am a woman, after all," sighed the visitor, dropping into a chair and looking round; "with a woman's feelings, too."

"And very nice those feelings are, since they have influenced you to pay me a visit in the wilds," remarked the artist imperturbably.