Full text: Mrs. Dalloway

MRS. DALLOWAY 
Not for herself. She felt only how Sally was being 
mauled already, maltreated; she felt his hostility; his 
jealousy; his determination to break into their com- 
panionship. All this she saw as one sees a landscape in 
a flash of lightning—and Sally (never had she admired 
her so much!) gallantly taking her way unvanquished. 
She laughed. She made old Joseph tell her the names 
of the stars, which he liked doing very seriously. She 
stood there : she listened. She heard the names of the 
stars. 
“Oh this horror!” she said to herself, as if she had 
known all along that something would interrupt, would 
embitter her moment of happiness. 
Yet how much she owed Peter Walsh later. Always 
when she thought of him she thought of their quarrels 
for some reason—because she wanted his good opinion 
so much, perhaps. She owed him words: “senti- 
mental,” “civilised”; they started up every day of her 
life as if he guarded her. A book was sentimental; an 
attitude to life sentimental. ‘‘ Sentimental,” perhaps 
she was to be thinking of the past. What would he 
think, she wondered, when he came back? 
That she had grown older? Would he say that, or 
would she see him thinking when he came back, that 
she had grown older? It was true. Since her illness she 
had turned almost white. 
Laying her brooch on the table, she had a sudden 
spasm, as if, while she mused, the icy claws had had the 
chance to fix in her. She was not old yet. She had just 
broken into her fifty-second year. Months and months 
of it were still untouched. June, July, August! Each 
still remained almost whole, and, as if to catch the 
falling drop, Clarissa (crossing to the dressing-table) 
plunged into the very heart of the moment, transfixed 
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