Yes! the unfortunate man had wept!
Too Long; Didn't ReadYes! the unfortunate man had wept! Some recollection doubtless had flashed across his brain, and to use Cyrus Harding’s expression, by those tears he was once more a man.
The colonists left him for some time on the plateau, and withdrew themselves to a short distance, so that he might feel himself free; but he did not think of profiting by this liberty, and Harding soon brought him back to Granite House. Two days after this occurrence, the stranger appeared to wish gradually to mingle with their common life. He evidently heard and understood, but no less evidently was he strangely determined not to speak to the colonists; for one evening, Pencroft, listening at the door of his room, heard these words escape from his lips:—
“No! here! I! never!”
The sailor reported these words to his companions.
“There is some painful mystery there!” said Harding.
The stranger had begun to use the laboring tools, and he worked in the garden. When he stopped in his work, as was often the case, he remained retired within himself, but on the engineer’s recommendation, they respected the reserve which he apparently wished to keep. If one of the settlers approached him, he drew back, and his chest heaved with sobs, as if overburdened!
Was it remorse that overwhelmed him thus? They were compelled to believe so, and Gideon Spilett could not help one day making this observation,—
“If he does not speak it is because he has, I fear, things too serious to be told!”
They must be patient and wait.