“Most lives are not distinguished by great achievements. They are measured by an infinite number of small ones. Each time you do a kindness for someone or bring a smile to his face, it gives your life meaning. Never doubt your value, little friend. The world would be a dismal place without you in it. (tweaked version of a passage from Scandal in Spring)”
“To put to rest any doubts you might have… I’m jealous of every man who comes within ten feet of you. I’m jealous of the clothes on your skin and the air you breathe. I’m jealous of every moment you spend out of my sight”
“Daisy had known the novel was silly even as she had read it, but that had not detracted one bit from her enjoyment.”
“Over the years I’ve collected a thousand memories of you, every glimpse, every word you’ve ever said to me. All those visits to your family’s home, those dinners and holidays—I could hardly wait to walk through the front door and see you.” The corners of his mouth quirked with reminiscent amusement. “You, in the middle of that brash, bull-headed lot…I love watching you deal with your family. You’ve always been everything I thought a woman should be. And I have wanted you every second of my life since we first met.”
“A book had always been a door to another world... a world much more interesting and fantastical than reality. But she had finally discovered that life could be even more wonderful than fantasy.
And that love could fill the real world with magic.”
“She let a teasing tone enter her voice. 'Is there any emergency for which you are not prepared, Mr Swift?'
'Miss Bowman, if I had enough pockets I could save the world.”
“One of the servants had reported that Daisy had been sneaking around the house at night, deliberately tripping all the traps to keep the mice from being killed.
“Is this true, daughter?” Thomas Bowman had rumbled, his gaze filled with ire as he stared at Daisy.
“It could be,” she had allowed. “But there is another explanation.”
“And what is that?” Bowman had asked sourly.
Her tone turned congratulatory. “I think we are hosting the most intelligent mice in New York!”
“Daisy has a unique spirit. A warm and romantic nature. If she is forced into a loveless marriage, she will be devastated. She deserves a husband who will cherish her for everything she is, and who will protect her from the harsher realities of the world. A husband who will allow her to dream."
“It's me, love," he said softly. "Everything's all right."
Daisy managed to whisper through dry lips. "If you're a ghost...I hope you haunt me forever."
Matthew sat on the floor and reached for her cold hands. "Would a ghost use the door?" he asked gently, bringing her fingers to his scratched, battered face.”
“On Monday they went out for a private picnic.
On Tuesday they went for a carriage drive.
On Wednesday they went to pick bluebells.
On Thursday they fished at the lake, returning with damp clothes and sun-glazed complexions, laughing together at a joke they didn't share with anyone else.
On Friday they danced together at an impromptu musical evening, looking so well matched one of the guests remarked it was a pleasure to watch them.
On Saturday Matthew woke up wanting to murder someone.”
“Some things are better when it’s raining. Like reading. Or sleeping. Or this.”
“Lying in bed with me?”
“Matthew wanted hours, days, weeks alone with her... he wanted all her thoughts and smiles and secrets. The freedom to lay his soul bare before her.”
“As Marcus considered various ways to open the subject of Daisy, Swift surprised him with a blunt statement. “My lord, there is something I would like to discuss with you.”
Marcus adopted a pleasantly encouraging expression. “Very well.”
“It turns out that Miss Bowman and I have reached an…understanding. After considering the logical advantages on both sides, I have made a sensible and pragmatic decision that we should—”
“How long have you been in love with her?” Marcus interrupted, inwardly amused.
Swift let out a tense sigh. “Years,” he admitted.”
“I want to know what your five-dollar wish was for.”
“Is that all?” He smiled beneath her exploring fingertips. “I wished you would find someone who wanted you as much as I did. But I knew it wouldn’t come true.”
The candlelight slid over Daisy’s delicate features as she raised her head to look at him. “Why not?”
“Because I knew no one could ever want you as much as I do.”
Daisy levered herself farther over him until her hair tumbled in a dark curtain around them both.
“What was your wish?” Matthew asked, combing his fingers through the fall of shimmering hair.
“That I could find the right man to marry.” Her tender smile stopped his heart. “And then you appeared.”
“I thought I would spend the rest of my life searching for little reminders of you...”
“Thunderstorms and rainbows wrapped together in a convenient pocket-sized parcel.”
“Spectacles, on that strong-featured face…and his hair mussed as if he had been tugging absently on the front locks. All that combined with a plenitude of muscles and masculine virility was astonishingly…erotic. “When did you start wearing those?” Daisy managed to ask.
“About a year ago.” He smiled ruefully and removed the spectacles with one hand. “I need them to read. Too many late nights poring over contracts and reports.”
“They…they are very becoming.”
“Are they?” Continuing to smile, Swift shook his head, as if it had not occurred to him to wonder about his appearance.”
“All I would ever ask of a wife,” he murmured, “is that she would bear me some affection. That she might be happy to see me at the end of the day.”
“Perhaps, in spite of all she had heard about the ideal of a perfect marriage, there was no such thing. Perhaps every marriage was a unique creation. It was a comforting thought. And it filled her with hope.”
“I don’t have any mottoes. If I did I would forever be contradicting them.”
“No,” Lillian said frankly. “But much as I hate to admit it, that puts us in a minority. Swift is liked by everyone in the northern hemisphere, including Westcliff and his friends, my friends, the servants, the neighbors—”
“You are exaggerating—”
“—children, animals and the higher order of plants,” Lillian finished sardonically. “If root vegetables could talk, I’ve no doubt they would say they like him, too.”
Daisy, who was sitting by the window with a book, looked up with a sudden grin. “His charm doesn’t extend to poultry,” she said. “He has a problem with geese.” Her smile turned quizzical. “Thank you for being so accommodating, Lillian. I expected you to make a fuss about the betrothal.”
“Daisy glanced up into her husband’s sparkling eyes. “You’re being scandalous, Mr. Swift,” she whispered. “This is nothing,” Matthew replied in an undertone, his expression soft with love. “I’m saving my worst behavior for tonight.”
“Daisy,” Westcliff said gently, “most lives are not distinguished by great achievements. They are measured by an infinite number of small ones. Each time you do a kindness for someone or bring a smile to his face, it gives your life meaning. Never doubt your value, little friend. The world would be a dismal place without Daisy Bowman in it.”
“When he had explained why investors who wanted low risk and moderate returns should put their capital into national debt shares, Daisy had interrupted him by asking, “Father, wouldn’t it be wonderful if hummingbirds had tea parties and we were small enough to be invited?”
“Daisy Bowman,” he said unevenly, “I’d spend eternity in hell for one hour with you.” “Is that how long it takes? An hour?” His reply was rueful. “Sweetheart, at this point it would be a miracle if I lasted one minute.”
“And since Evie's husband, St. Vincent, had decided not to go fishing, Evie said
she would rather remain in bed with him.
"You would have much more fun fishing with me," Daisy had told her.
"No," Evie had said decisively, "I wouldn't.”
“Please be real,” she gasped. “Please don’t be a dream.” “I’m real,” Matthew said huskily. “Don’t cry so hard, there’s no—oh, Daisy, love—” He gripped her head in his hands and pressed comforting words against her lips while she struggled to get even closer to him. He eased her to the floor, using the reassuring weight of his body to subdue her.”
“Matthew. I’m here. I’m yours. I want to do everything you’ve ever imagined doing with me.”
“He approached her with great care. Sinking to his haunches, he contemplated her with immeasurable tenderness and concern. One of his big hands moved, shoving aside some of the books until the space between their bodies was clear. “It’s me, love,” he said softly. “Everything’s all right.”
“Where there is to be creative action, it is quite beside the point to discuss what we should or should not do in order to be right or good. A mind that is single and sincere is not interested in being good, in conducting relations with other people so as to live up to a rule. Nor, on the other hand, is it interested in being free, in acting perversely just to prove its independence. Its interest is not in itself, but in the people and problems of which it is aware; these are “itself.” It acts, not according to the rules, but according to the circumstances of the moment, and the “well” it wishes to others is not security but liberty.”
“You do not come to the thee-ator and it will wither your soul." (Madam Leadora Seamstress for the Royal Magnificent Theater)”
“Oh, we’re smart,” he said, the same way. “It’s the same thing,” he cried; “all we use it for is power. Yes, we’ve got them scared all right, all of them, except the tame things we’ve taken the souls out of. We’re the cocks of the dung-heap, all right; the bullies of the globe.” “We’re not hunting rabbits tonight,” I reminded him. “No; our own kind. A wolf wouldn’t do that; not a mangy coyote. That’s the hunting we like now, our own kind. The rest can’t excite us any more.” “We don’t have to hunt men often,” I told him. “Most people never have. They get along pretty well together.” “Oh, we love each other,” he said. “We labor for each other, suffer for each other, admire each other. We have all the pack instincts, all right, and nice names for them.”
“Two centuries ago, a former European colony decided to catch up with Europe. It succeeded so well that the United States of America became a monster, in which the taints, the sickness, and the inhumanity of Europe have grown to appalling dimensions.”
“Hey,darling", I say quietly, my voice gruff and low, thick with emotion. "You lost?" She blushes.Duck, I've missed that blush. "Um ...yeah, I did." I chuckled.”
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