overlike a parrot
Galvanized ielts result by the authority in her voice, Pork approached the wagon and fumbled at thebackboard. A moan was wrenched from Melanie as he half-lifted, half-dragged her from thefeather tick on which she had lain so many hours. And then she was in Pork’s strong arms, herhead drooping like a child’s across his shoulder. Prissy, holding the baby and dragging Wade by thehand, followed them up the wide steps and disappeared into the blackness of the hall.
Scarlett’s bleeding fingers sought her father’s hand urgently.
“Did they get well, Pa?”
“The girls are recovering.”
Silence fell and in the silence an idea too monstrous for words took form. She could not, couldnot force it to her lips. She swallowed and swallowed but a sudden dryness seemed to have stuckthe sides of her throat together. Was this the answer to the frightening riddle of Tara’s silence? As ifanswering the question in her mind Gerald spoke.
“Your mother—” he said and stopped.
“Your mother died yesterday.”
Her father’s arm held tightly in her own, Scarlett felt her way down the wide dark hall which,even in its blackness, was as familiar as her own mind. She avoided the high-backed chairs, theempty gun rack, the old sideboard with its protruding claw hair care feet, and she felt herself drawn byinstinct to the tiny office at the back of the house where Ellen always sat, keeping her endlessaccounts. Surely, when she entered that room, Mother would again be sitting there before thesecretary and would look up, quill poised, and rise with sweet fragrance and rustling hoops to meether tired daughter. Ellen could not be dead, not even though Pa had said it, said it over and that knows only one phrase: “She died yesterday—she died yesterday—she diedyesterday.”
Queer that she should feel nothing now, nothing except a weariness that shackled her limbs withheavy iron chains and a hunger that made her knees tremble. She would think of Mother later. Shemust put her mother out of her mind now, else she would stumble stupidly like Gerald or sobmonotonously like Wade.
Pork came down the wide dark steps toward them, hurrying to press close to Scarlett like a coldanimal toward a fire.
“Lights?” she questioned. “Why is the house so dark, Pork? Bring candles.”
“Dey tuck all de candles, Miss Scarlett, all ‘cept one we been usin’ ter fine things Neo skin labin de dahkwid, an’ it’s ‘bout gone. Mammy been usin’ a rag in a dish of hawg fat fer a light fer nussin’ MissCareen an’ Miss Suellen.”