I knownothing of the lumber business

E LAST GOOD-BY had been said and the last sound of wheels and hooves diedaway, Scarlett went into Ellen’s office and removed a gleaming object from where she had hiddenit the night before between the yellowed papers in the pigeon-holes of the secretary. Hearing Porksniffling in the dining room as he went about laying the table for dinner she called to him. He cameto her, his black face as forlorn as a lost and masterless hound.
“Pork,” she said sternly, “you cry just once more ancheap louis vuitton bags ukd I’ll—I’ll cry, too. You’ve got to stop.”
“Yas’m. Ah try but eve’y time Ah try Ah thinks of Mist’ Gerald an’—”
“Well, don’t think. I can stand everybody else’s tears but not yours. There.” she broke off gently,“don’t you see? I can’t stand yours because I know how you loved him. Blow your nose, Pork. I’vegot a present for you.”
A little interest flickered in Pork’s eyes as he blew his nose loudly but it was more politenessthan interest.
“You remember that night you got shot robbing somebody’s hen house?”
“Lawd Gawd, Miss Scarlett! Ah ain’ never—”
“Well, you did, so don’t lie to me about it at this late date. You remember I said I was going togive you a watch for being so faithful?”
“Yas’m, Ah ‘members. Ah figgered you’d done fergot.”
“No, I didn’t forget and here it is.”
She held out for him a massive gold watch, heavily embossed, from which dangled a chain withmany fobs and seals.
“Fo’ Gawd, Miss Scarlettcheap louis vuitton handbags!” cried Pork. “Dat’s Mist’ Gerald’s watch! Ah done seen him look atdat watch a milyun times!”
“Yes, it’s Pa’s watch, Pork, and I’m giving it to you. Take it.”
“Oh, no’m!” Pork retreated in horror. “Dat’s a w’ite gempmum’s watch an’ Mist’ Gerald’s terboot. Huccome you talk ‘bout givin’ it ter me, Miss Scarlett? Dat watch belong by rights ter lilWade Hampton.”
“It belongs to you. What did Wade Hampton ever do for Pa? Did he look after him when he wassick and feeble? Did he bathe him and dress him and shave him? Did he stick by him when theYankees came? Did he steal for him? Don’t be a fool, Pork. If ever anyone deserved a watch, youdo, and I know Pa would approve. Here.”
She picked up the black hand and laid the watch in the palm. Pork gazed at it reverently andslowly delight spread over his face.
“Fer me, truly, Miss Scarlett?”
“Yes, indeed.”
“Well’m—thankee, Ma’m.”
“Would you like for me to take it to Atlanta and have it engraved?”
“Whut’s dis engrabed mean?” Pork’s voice was suspicious.
“It means to put wrilouis vuittonting on the back of it, like—like ‘To Pork from the O’Haras—Well donegood and faithful servant.’ ”
“No’m—thankee. Ma’m. Never mind de engrabin’.” Pork retre cheap louis vuitton ated a step, clutching the watchfirmly.
A little smile twitched her lips.
“What’s the matter, Pork? Don’t you trust me to bring it back?”
“Yas’m, Ah trus’es you—only, well’m, you mout change yo’ mind.”
“I wouldn’t do that.”
“Well’m, you mout sell ilouis vuitton wholesalet. Ah spec it’s wuth a heap.”
“Do you think I’d sell Pa’s watch?”
“Yas’m—ef you needed de money.”
“You ought to be beat for that, Pork. I’ve a mind to take the watch back.”
“No’m, you ain’!” The first faint smile of the day showed on Pork’s grief-worn face. “Ah knowsyou— An’ Miss Scarlett—”
“Yes, Pork?”
“Ef you wuz jes’ half as nice ter w’ite folks as you is ter niggers, Ah spec de worl’ would treatyou better.”
“It treats me well enough,” she said. “Now, go find Mr. Ashley and tell him I want to see himhere, right away.”
Ashley sat on Ellen’s little writing chair, his long body dwarfing the frail bit of furniture whileScarlett offered him a half-interest in the mill. Not once did his eyes meet hers and he spoke noword of interruption. He sat looking down at his hands, tlouis vuitton handbagsurning them over slowly, inspecting ficheap louis vuitton beltsrstpalms and then backs, as though he had never seen them before. Despite hard work, they were stillslender and sensitive looking and remarkably well tended for a farmer’s hands.
His bowed head and silence disturbed her a little and she redoubled her efforts to make the millsound attractive. She brought to bear, too, all the charm of smile and glance she possessed but theywere wasted, for he did nlouis vuitton outletot raise his eyes. If he would only look at her! She made no mention ofthe information Will had given her of Ashley’s determination to go North and spoke with the outward assumption that no obstacle stood in the way of his agreement with her plan. Still he didnot speak and finally, her words trailed into silence. There was a determined squareness about hisslender shoulders that alarmed her. Surely he wouldn’t refuse! What earthl y reason could he havefor refusing?
“Ashley,” she began again and paused. She had not intended using her pregnancy as anargument, had shrunk from the thought of Ashley even seeing her so bloated and ugly, but as herother persuasions seemed to have made no impression, she decided to use it and her helplessnessas a last card.
“You must come to Atlanta. I do need your help so badly now, because I can’t look after themills. It may be months before I can because—you see—well, because …”
“Please!” he said roughly. “Good God, Scarlett!”
He rose and went abruptly to the window and stood with his back to her, watching the solemnsingle file of ducks parade across the barnyard.
“Is that—is that why you won’t look at me?” she questioned forlornly. “I know I look—”
He swung around in a flash and his gray eyes met hers withcheap louis vuitton shoes an intensity that made her hands goto her throat.
“Damn your looks!” he said with a swift violence. “You know you always look beautiful to me.”
Happiness flooded her until her eyes were liquid with tears.
“How sweet of you to say that! For I was so ashamed to let you see me—”
“You ashamed? Why should you be ashamed? I’m the one to feel shame and I do. If it hadn’tbeen for my stupidity you wouldn’t be in this fix. You’d never have married Frank. I should neverhave let you leave Tara last winter. Oh, fool that I was! I should have known you—known youwere desperate, so desperate that you’d—I should have—I should have—” His face went haggard.
Scarlett’s heart beat wildly. He was regretting that he had not run away with her!
“The least I could have done was go out and commit highway robbery or murder to get the taxmcheap louis vuittononey for you when you had taken us in as beggars. Oh, I messed it up all the way around!”
Her heart contracted with disappointment and some of the happiness went from her, for thesewere not the words she hoped to hear.
“I would have gone anyway,” she said tiredly. “I couldn’t have let you do anything like that. Andanyway, it’s done now.”
“Yes, it’s done now,” he said with slow bitterness. “You wouldn’t have let me do anythingdishonorable but you would sell yourself to a man you didn’t love—and bear his child, so that myfamily and I wouldn’t starve. It was kind of you to shelter my helplessness.”
The edge in his voice spoke of a raw, unhealed wound that ached within him and his wordsbrought shame to her eyes. He was swift to see it and his face changed to gentleness.
“You didn’t think I was blaming you? Dear God, S Cheap Louis Vuitton Bags/Shoes/Belts/Luggage/Sunglasses/Wallets UK Sale carlett! No. You are the bravest woman I’veever known. It’s myself I’m blaming.”
He turned and looked out of the window again and the shoulders presented to her gaze did notlook quite so square. Scarlett waited a long moment in silence, hoping that Ashley would return tothe mood in which he spoke of her beauty, hoping he would say more words that she couldtreasure. It had been so long since she had seen him and she had lived on memories until they wereworn thin. She knew he still loved her. That fact was evident, in every line of him, in every bitter,self-condemnatory word, in his resentment at her bearing Frank’s child. She so longed to hear himsay it in words, longed to speak words herself that would provoke a confession, but she dared not.
She remembered her promise given last winter in the orchard, that she would necheap louis vuitton bagsver again throwherself at his head. Sadly she knew that promise must be kept if Ashley were to remain near her.
One cry from her of love and longing, one look that pleaded for his arms, and the matter would besettled forever. Ashley would surely go to New York. And he must not go away.
“Oh, Ashley, don’t blame yourself! How could it be your fault? You will come to Atlanta andhelp me, won’t you?”
“But, Ashley,” her voice was beginning to break with anguish and disappointment, “But I’dcounted on you. I do need you so. Frank can’t help me. He’s so busy with the store and if you don’tcome I don’t know where I can get a man! Everybody in Atlanta who is smart is busy with his ownaffairs and the others are so incompetent and—”
“It’s no use, Scarlett.”
“You mean you’d rather go to New York and live among Yankees than come to Atlanta?”
“Who told you that?” He turned and faced her, faint annoyance wrinkling his forehead.
“Yes, I’ve decided to go North. An old friend who made the Grand Tour with me before the warhas offered me a position in his father’s bank. It’s better so, Scarlett. I’d be no good to you. I knownothing of the lumber business.”
“But you know less about banking and it’s much harder! And I know I’d make far moreallowances for your inexperience than Yankees would!”
He winced and she knew she had said the wrong thing. He turned and looked out of the windowagain.
“I don’t want allowances made for me. I want to stand on my own feet for what I’m worth.

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