Sunday, October 18, 2009

excerpt from Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

found stereo card (The Heavenly Twins)

scene with Mrs. Danvers, the housekeeper of Manderley, and the newlywed, second Mrs. de Winter, the narrator and heroine of the story:

"... You would not think she had been gone now for so long, would you, not by the way the rooms are kept? You would think she had just gone out for a little while and would be back in the evening."

I forced a smile. I could not speak. My throat felt dry and tight.

"It's not only this room," she said. "It's in many rooms in the house. In the morning-room, in the hall, even in the little flower-room. I feel her everywhere. You do too, don't you?"

She stared at me curiously. Her voice dropped to a whisper. "Sometimes, when I walk along the corridor here, I fancy I hear her just behind me. That quick, light footstep. I could not mistake it anywhere. And in the minstrels' gallery above the hall. I've seen her leaning there, in the evenings in the old days, looking down at the hall below and calling to the dogs. I can fancy her there now from time to time. It's almost as though I catch the sound of her dress sweeping the stairs as she comes down to dinner." She paused. She went on looking at me, watching my eyes. "Do you think she can see us, talking to one another now?" she said slowly. "Do you think the dead come back and watch the living?"

I swallowed. I dug my nails into my hands.

"I don't know," I said. "I don't know." My voice sounded high-pitched and unnatural. Not my voice at all.

"Sometimes I wonder," she whispered. "Sometimes I wonder if she comes back here to Manderley and watches you and Mr. de Winter together."

We stood there by the door, staring at one another. I could not take my eyes away from hers. How dark and sombre they were in that white skull's face of hers, how malevolent, how full of hatred. ..." (Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier, Pocket Books, NY ©1968)

Kym Hepworth / Haunted / Vellum & inkjet on paper / 13 3/8 x 11 in. / 2005

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