I have been sadly distrustful of myself, in this difficult and lamentable matter, ever since I found out my own ignorance of the strength of Laura's unhappy attachment.
His interview with Laura had evidently grieved and surprised him more than he liked to confess.
"Laura! you will never lower yourself by making a confession to him?"
I went in, as usual, through the door between our two bed-rooms, to bid Laura good-night before she went to sleep.
This has frightened me, because it looks as if his one fixed idea about Laura was becoming too much for his mind.
My eyes were on Laura's face while the message was being delivered.
Presently Laura ran against her, and at once began feeling her hands, examining her dress, and trying to find out if she knew her; but not succeeding in this, she turned away as from a stranger, and the poor woman could not conceal the pang she felt, at finding that her beloved child did not know her.
'She then gave Laura a string of beads which she used to wear at home, which were recognised by the child at once, who, with much joy, put them around her neck, and sought me eagerly to say she understood the string was from her home.
'The mother now sought to caress her, but poor Laura repelled her, preferring to be with her acquaintances.
'After a while, on the mother taking hold of her again, a vague idea seemed to flit across Laura's mind, that this could not be a stranger; she therefore felt her hands very eagerly, while her countenance assumed an expression of intense interest; she became very pale; and then suddenly red; hope seemed struggling with doubt and anxiety, and never were contending emotions more strongly painted upon the human face: at this moment of painful uncertainty, the mother drew her close to her side, and kissed her fondly, when at once the truth flashed upon the child, and all mistrust and anxiety disappeared from her face, as with an expression of exceeding joy she eagerly nestled to the bosom of her parent, and yielded herself to her fond embraces.
'Laura accompanied her mother to the door, clinging close to her all the way, until they arrived at the threshold, where she paused, and felt around, to ascertain who was near her.
Such are a few fragments from the simple but most interesting and instructive history of Laura Bridgman.