Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Beauchampe; or, The Kentucky Tragedy. A Tale of Passion. >> Chapter X >> Page 96

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Page 96

Novel (Romance) | Lea and Blanchard | 1842
Transcription 96 BEAUCHAMPE.

truth, when I tell you that I am cut off from the world--
it matters not how, nor why. It is so,�and the less I
see of it the better. When you know this, you will un-
derstand why it is that I should prefer not to see you."
Ah ! but not why I should not seek to see you. No,
Miss Cooke, your dreary destiny does not lessen my
willingness to soothe to share it."
That can never be."
Do not say so. If you knew my heart "" Keep its secrets, Mr. Beauchampe. Enough, sir,
that I know my own. That, sir, has but one prayer, and that is for peace, but one passion, and that, sir, 1,
Is�speak, say, Miss Cooke, tell me what this passion
is? Relieve me; but tell me not that you love another.
Not that,�any thing but that.""Love!" she exclaimed scornfully�" love! no, sir, I
do not love. Happily, I am free from any such weakness
that weakness of my sex !"
Call it not a weakness, dear Miss Cooke, but a
strength�a strength of the heart, not peculiar to your
sex, but the source of what is lofty and ennobling in the
heart of man."
Ay, he has a precious stock of it, no doubt ; but no
more of this, Mr. Beauchampe. 1 have my passion, per-
haps, but surely love makes no part of it."
What then'!"" Hate !"
Hate ! ha ! can it be that you hate, Miss Cooke'!"" Ay, sir, it is possible.. Hate is my passion, not the
only one, since it produces another bearing its own like-
ness."
And that?
�"
Is revenge !�Ask yourself, with these passions reign-
ing in my heart, whether there is room for any thing more
for any other ! There is not, and you may not deceive
yourself with the vain hope to plant any feebler passion
in a spot which bears such poisonous weeds."
Thus speaking she left the room, and, astounded by
her vehemence, and by the strange though imperfect
revelation which she had made, Beauchampe found him-
self alone!