Beulah (Chapter 7, page 1 of 7)

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Chapter 7

Through quiet, woody dells roamed Beulah's spirit, and, hand in
hand, she and Lilly trod flowery paths and rested beside clear,
laughing brooks. Life, with its grim realities, seemed but a flying
mist. The orphan hovered on the confines of eternity's ocean, and
its silent waves almost laved the feet of the weary child. The room
was darkened, and the summer wind stole through the blinds
stealthily, as if awed by the solitude of the sick-chamber. Dr.
Hartwell sat by the low French bedstead, holding one emaciated hand
in his, counting the pulse which bounded so fiercely in the blue
veins. A fold of white linen containing crushed ice lay on her
forehead, and the hollow cheeks and thin lips were flushed to
vermilion hue. It was not scarlet, but brain fever, and this was the
fifth day that the sleeper had lain in a heavy stupor.

Dr. Hartwell put back the hand he held, and, stooping over, looked long and
anxiously at the flushed face. The breathing was deep and labored,
and, turning away, he slowly and noiselessly walked up and down the
floor. To have looked at him then, in his purple silk robe de
chambre, one would have scarcely believed that thirty years had
passed over his head. He was tall and broad-chested, his head
massive and well formed, his face a curious study. The brow was
expansive and almost transparent in its purity, the dark, hazel eyes
were singularly brilliant, while the contour of lips and chin was
partially concealed by a heavy mustache and board.

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