He was not famous as a charitable person, but he had, for all that, unobtrusively held out a helping hand to a good many struggling men in need of it during his career, and there were now certain conjectures and suspicions lying half-formulated at the back of his mind.
And yet Hilda never put any of those thoughts into words, though in her books she loved best those words that expressed her half-formulated feelings. Had she been removed to the noise and the whirl of city life, she would very probably have known how to define what she had lost, she might even have made others feel what she herself had so keenly felt.
He tried to think, to plan; but in the midst of it all half-formulated schemes deserted him because of the sudden action of one of them. He had taken something from his pocket, and now he and another stooped over the prostrate figure of the girl.
She did not always express herself clearly, but Gladwyne saw that she did not place him in the same category as his father and he recognized her half-formulated thought that it would have been better had he grown up under the latter's firmer guidance. "Wonders never cease, mother," he responded with an attempt at lightness. "It's difficult to imagine your being influenced by the latest propaganda.
No, not to Waldron. Yet wander they did, despite her; and with persistence they followed channels till then quite unknown to her. What might these channels be? And whither, I ask again, did the girl's memories and fancies, her wondering thoughts, her vague, half-formulated longings, lead?
Yet they were familiar, friendly to Andrews. He kept feeling a half-formulated desire to be up there too, crowded under a beam, grimacing through heavy wreaths of pomegranates and acanthus leaves, the incarnation of old rich lusts, of clear fires that had sunk to dust ages since.
As he dawdled over his cup of muddy coffee he had a curious sense that his mind was intent on keeping at bay some half-formulated fear. He felt pursued, as by an indistinct dream. Yet he was cunning enough to pretend that this something was too illusive to capture outright, so he turned his thoughts to all manner of remote things.
"If this thing is what it appears to be, if it isn't merely some freakish bit of stone weathered off somewhere, why, it means my God, what doesn't it mean?" He shuddered, and glanced fearfully about him; all his calculations already seemed crashing down about him; all his plans, half-formulated, appeared in ruin.
Even in the midst of her anxiety and pain, Miss Gannion felt the power of its flexible modulation; and her half-formulated condemnation of Lorimer stayed itself. Thayer broke the silence which followed, and his accent was resonant again. "There's no especial use in thrashing over the past. The present is none too good; but my question is simply in relation to the future." "And the question is?"
He tried to realise what he had looked for when he had asked her to marry him, and could not do so clearly; but there was in the back of his mind a half-formulated notion that it had been a cheerful companion, somebody to amuse him. She scarcely seemed likely to do the latter now.