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16 Cathy becomes a widow

 

18001 On the evening after the burialHeathcliff came to fetch Cathy

Why not let her stay here with me?’I begged

I'm looking for someone to rent the Grange from me,’he answered.‘You'll stay on here as housekeeperEllenbut Cathy must come to Wuthering HeightsFrom now on she'll have to work for her food.’

I shall work'replied Cathy.‘And I'll look after LintonHe's all I've got to love in the worldI'm just sorry for youMr HeathcliffYou have nobody to love youYou are as lonely and miserable as the devilNobody will cry for you when you dieI'm glad I'm not you!’

Go and get your clothesyou wicked girl,’he said.‘We'll be leaving in a few minutes.’When she had gonehe walked across the room to look at the picture of Cathy's motherCatherinewhich was hanging on the wall

Do you know what I did yesterdayEllen?’he saidturning quickly away from the picture.‘I went to the churchyardand asked the man who was digging Edgar's grave to open the lid of Catherine's coffin for meHer face looked just the sameI could not stop looking at herWhen the man closed the lidI broke open one side of her coffinthe side away from Edgar's graveand covered it up with earthAnd I bribed the man to bury me there when I dienext to herand to take the side of my coffin away tooso that I shall have her in my armsnot Edgar!’

You were very wickedMr Heathcliffto disturb the dead!’

I disturbed nobodyEllenand I feel much happier nowShe is the one who has disturbed meFor eighteen years she has haunted meYou know I was wildalmost madafter she diedFor days I prayed for her ghost to return to meOn the day of her burialI went to her grave in the eveningThere was a bitter windand snow on the groundI wanted so much to have her in my arms againSo I dug down through the loose earth to her coffinand was about to pull the lid offwhen I felt a warm breath on my faceShe seemed to be with menot in the earthbut close to meI was so happy that she was with me againI filled in the graveand ran eagerly home to the HeightsI looked impatiently round for herI could feel her but I could not see herAnd since thenshe has played plenty of tricks on me like thatWhen I sleep in her bedroomI can hear her outside the windowor entering the roomor even breathing close to mebut when I open my eyesI'm always disappointedSlowlyslowlyshe's killing mewith the ghost of a hope that's lasted eighteen years!’

He was talking almost to himselfso I did not answerWhen Cathy came inhe stood upready to go

GoodbyeEllen!’whispered my dear little mistress.‘Come and visit me!’As she kissed meher face felt as cold as ice

Ohno you won'tEllen'said Heathcliff.‘I'll send for you if I want you!’and together they left the Grange

I haven't seen Cathy since thenOnce I went to the Heights to visit herbut I was not allowed to see herAbout six weeks ago I had a long conversation with Zillahthe housekeeperwho gave me news of CathyIt appeared thatwhen she ar rived at the Heightsshe did her best to look after her sick husbandHe was obviously dyingalthough Heathcliff refused to call the doctorOnly a few weeks after her arrivalLinton died in the nightwith only Cathy by his bedsideHeathcliff inherited all of Linton'sand what had been Cathy'sfortuneso Cathy is now very poor

She must be very miserableand very lonelyin that darkunpleasant houseHeathcliff hates herand Joseph and Zillah don't speak to herbecause they think she's too proudPoor Hareton would like to be friendly with herbut she scorns him because he's uneducatedI would like to leave my job hererent a little cottage and ask Cathy to come and live with mebut Mr Heathcliff will never permit thatOf courseif she married againshe could leave that housebut I can't arrange that

 


 

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