Then, too, is the time for the moonlit boating where the Potomac narrows between steep and romantic banks of a sylvan wildness, and where the long oars of the swift rowers bear you as if on wings; for picnics to Rock Creek, a region of rude beauty, where the woods abound in lupines and pink azaleas, and the great white dogwood boughs stretch away into the darkness of the forest like a press of moonbeams, and where at dark your horses ford the stream and climb the hill, and bring you over the Georgetown Heights, past villas half-guessed by starlight among their gardens and fountains, and in by a market picturesque with a hundred torches flaring over the heads of mules and negroes and venders and higglers piles of game, crisp vegetables and scarlet berries.
Evelina's dreadful familiarity with it all, her fluency about things which Ann Eliza half-guessed and quickly shuddered back from, seemed even more alien and terrible than the actual tale she told.
The imagination was left the vision of more leagues of wild animals even to the half-guessed azure mountains and beyond. I had seen abundant game elsewhere in Africa, but nothing like the multitudes inhabiting the Kapiti Plains at that time of year. In other seasons this locality is comparatively deserted.
I worked as I had never worked before, and not once did I know whose property I thus saved. At first I groped in the darkness, seizing what I could; then gradually, like the glow of a red dawn, a strange light grew, showing dimly and ruddily the half-guessed features of the place. It glowed, this light, increasing in power as heating metal slowly turns red.
The carriage swayed and swung dangerously. Keith drove, every faculty concentrated. No one spoke. The dim and ghostly half-guessed forms of things at night streamed past. "Who sent that letter?" demanded Keith finally. "Mex wouldn't tell me," replied Krafft. "How long ago did he deliver it?" "About an hour." The horse plunged frantically under the lash as this reply reached Keith.
Indeed, it seemed to her that that inseparable companion of her inmost thoughts had prompted her to linger outside the door at Flint House on this afternoon so that she should overhear her father's words catch that sinister fragment of a sentence which compelled her to refuse the love of Charles until she had learnt the truth. She could not listen to him with that secret half-guessed.
Once a bull-elk, nearly a six-footer, but he loomed large as an elephant, came clacking past between the ranked tree-boles, stopping a moment to straddle a sapling and browse; while the wolverine, sitting motionless and wide-legged, watched him. Once a lynx, with its eternal, set grin, floated by, half-seen, half-guessed, as if a wisp of wood mist had broken loose and was floating about.
Here in the long north rooms, hermetically quiet, was the heart of the treasure of the ancient island. Here, saved inexplicably from the wreck of the past, were a thousand testimonies to that lost and but half-guessed art of the elder world.
There were few endearments, fewer still of the half-told, half-guessed confidences which, by their very fragmentary nature only serve to add emphasis to a comprehension that can construct a living, vital intimacy out of such slight materials. Indeed, there was no especial effort at spiritual comprehension between them.
Below him the country lay spread like a relief map valley, lesser ranges, foothills, far-off plain, the green of trees, the brown of grass and harvest, the blue of glimpsed water, the haze of heat and great distance, the thread-like gossamer of roads, the half-guessed shimmer of towns and cities in the mirage of summer, all the opulence of earth and the business of human activity.