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Carnac's Folly   By: (1862-1932)

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First Page:

CARNAC'S FOLLY

By Gilbert Parker

CONTENTS:

BOOK I I. IN THE DAYS OF CHILDHOOD II. ELEVEN YEARS PASS III. CARNAC'S RETURN IV. THE HOUSE ON THE HILL V. CARNAC AS MANAGER VI. LUKE TARBOE HAS AN OFFER VII. "AT OUR PRICE" VIII. JOHN GRIER MAKES ANOTHER OFFER IX. THE PUZZLE X. DENZIL TELLS HIS STORY XI. CARNAC'S TALK WITH HIS MOTHER XII. CARNAC SAYS GOOD BYE

BOOK II XIII. CARNAC'S RETURN XIV. THE HOUSE OF THE THREE TREES XV. CARNAC AND JUNTA XVI. JOHN GRIER MAKES A JOURNEY XVII. THE READING OF THE WILL

BOOK III XVIII. A GREAT DECISION XIX. CARNAC BECOMES A CANDIDATE XX. JUNIA AND TARBOE HEAR THE NEWS XXI. THE SECRET MEETING XXII. POINT TO POINT XXIII. THE MAN WHO WOULD NOT XXIV. THE BLUE PAPER XXV. DENZIL TAKES A HAND IN THE GAME XXVI. THE CHALLENGE XXVII. EXIT XXVIII. A WOMAN WRITES A LETTER XXIX. CARNAC AND HIS MOTHER XXX. TARBOE HAS A DREAM XXXI. THIS WAY HOME XXXII. 'HALVES, PARDNER, HALVES'

CHAPTER I. IN THE DAYS OF CHILDHOOD

"Carnac! Carnac! Come and catch me, Carnac!" It was a day of perfect summer and hope and happiness in the sweet, wild world behind the near woods and the far circle of sky and pine and hemlock. The voice that called was young and vibrant, and had in it the simple, true soul of things. It had the clearness of a bugle call ample and full of life and all life's possibilities. It laughed; it challenged; it decoyed.

Carnac heard the summons and did his best to catch the girl in the wood by the tumbling stream, where he had for many an hour emptied out his wayward heart; where he had seen his father's logs and timbers caught in jams, hunched up on rocky ledges, held by the prong of a rock, where man's purpose could, apparently, avail so little. Then he had watched the black bearded river drivers with their pike poles and their levers loose the key logs of the bunch, and the tumbling citizens of the woods and streams toss away down the current to the wider waters below. He was only a lad of fourteen, and the girl was only eight, but she Junia was as spry and graceful a being as ever woke the echoes of a forest.

He was only fourteen, but already he had visions and dreamed dreams. His father John Grier was the great lumber king of Canada, and Junia was the child of a lawyer who had done little with his life, but had had great joy of his two daughters, who were dear to him beyond telling.

Carnac was one of Nature's freaks or accidents. He was physically strong and daring, but, as a boy, mentally he lacked concentration and decision, though very clever. He was led from thing to thing like a ray of errant light, and he did not put a hand on himself, as old Denzil, the partly deformed servant of Junia's home, said of him on occasion; and Denzil was a man of parts.

Denzil was not far from the two when Junia made her appeal and challenge. He loved the girl exceedingly, and he loved Carnac little less, though in a different way. Denzil was French of the French, with habit of mind and character wholly his own.

Denzil's head was squat upon his shoulders, and his long, handsome body was also squat, because his legs were as short, proportionately, as his mind was long. His face was covered by a well cared for beard of dark brown, streaked with grey; his features were rugged and fine; and his eyes were like two coals burning under a gnarled headland; for his forehead, ample and full, had lines which were not lines of age, but of concentration. In his motions he was quiet and free, yet always there was a kind of stealthiness in his movements, which made him seem less frank than he really was... Continue reading book >>




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