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bottom, and it isn't. We think if we just defy the friends we have and
go out into the world everything will become easy and splendid.
One doesn't realize that even the sort of civilization one has at
Morningside Park is held together with difficulty. By policemen one
"This isn't a world for an innocent girl to walk about in. It's a world
of dirt and skin diseases and parasites. It's a world in which the
law can be a stupid pig and the police-stations dirty dens. One wants
helpers and protectors--and clean water.
"Am I becoming reasonable or am I being tamed?
"I'm simply discovering that life is many-sided and complex and
puzzling. I thought one had only to take it by the throat.
"It hasn't GOT a throat!"
One day the idea of self-sacrifice came into her head, and she made, she
thought, some important moral discoveries.
It came with an extreme effect of re-discovery, a remarkable novelty.
"What have I been all this time?" she asked herself, and answered, "Just
stark egotism, crude assertion of Ann Veronica, without a modest rag of
religion or discipline or respect for authority to cover me!"
It seemed to her as though she had at last found the touchstone of
conduct. She perceived she had never really thought of any one but
herself in all her acts and plans. Even Capes had been for her merely an
excitant to passionate love--a mere idol at whose feet one could enjoy
imaginative wallowings. She had set out to get a beautiful life, a free,
untrammelled life, self-development, without counting the cost either
for herself or others.
"I have hurt my father," she said; "I have hurt my aunt. I have hurt and
snubbed poor Teddy. I've made no one happy. I deserve pretty much what
"If only because of the way one hurts others if one kicks loose and
free, one has to submit....
"Broken-in people! I suppose the world is just all egotistical children
and broken-in people.
"Your little flag of pride must flutter down with the rest of them, Ann
"Compromise and kindness.
"Who are YOU that the world should lie down at your feet?
"You've got to be a decent citizen, Ann Veronica. Take your half loaf
with the others. You mustn't go clawing after a man that doesn't belong
to you--that isn't even interested in you. That's one thing clear.
"You've got to take the decent reasonable way. You've got to adjust
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