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|Anne's House of Dreams||Lucy Maud Montgomery|
Gilbert And Anne Disagree
|Page 2 of 4||
"Gilbert!" Anne's voice was full of protest. "Surely you don't mean it!"
"I do, indeed. And I have decided that it is my duty to broach the subject to Leslie."
"Gilbert Blythe, you shall NOT do any such thing," cried Anne vehemently. "Oh, Gilbert, you won't--you won't. You couldn't be so cruel. Promise me you won't."
"Why, Anne-girl, I didn't suppose you would take it like this. Be reasonable--"
"I won't be reasonable--I can't be reasonable--I AM reasonable. It is you who are unreasonable. Gilbert, have you ever once thought what it would mean for Leslie if Dick Moore were to be restored to his right senses? Just stop and think! She's unhappy enough now; but life as Dick's nurse and attendant is a thousand times easier for her than life as Dick's wife. I know--I KNOW! It's unthinkable. Don't you meddle with the matter. Leave well enough alone."
"I HAVE thought over that aspect of the case thoroughly, Anne. But I believe that a doctor is bound to set the sanctity of a patient's mind and body above all other considerations, no matter what the consequences may be. I believe it his duty to endeavor to restore health and sanity, if there is any hope whatever of it."
"But Dick isn't your patient in that respect," cried Anne, taking another tack. "If Leslie had asked you if anything could be done for him, THEN it might be your duty to tell her what you really thought. But you've no right to meddle ."
"I don't call it meddling. Uncle Dave told Leslie twelve years ago that nothing could be done for Dick. She believes that, of course."
"And why did Uncle Dave tell her that, if it wasn't true?" cried Anne, triumphantly. "Doesn't he know as much about it as you?"
"I think not--though it may sound conceited and presumptuous to say it. And you know as well as I that he is rather prejudiced against what he calls `these new-fangled notions of cutting and carving.' He's even opposed to operating for appendicitis."
"He's right," exclaimed Anne, with a complete change of front. `I believe myself that you modern doctors are entirely too fond of making experiments with human flesh and blood."
"Rhoda Allonby would not be a living woman today if I had been afraid of making a certain experiment," argued Gilbert. "I took the risk--and saved her life."
"I'm sick and tired of hearing about Rhoda Allonby," cried Anne--most unjustly, for Gilbert had never mentioned Mrs. Allonby's name since the day he had told Anne of his success in regard to her. And he could not be blamed for other people's discussion of it.
Gilbert felt rather hurt.
"I had not expected you to look at the matter as you do, Anne," he said a little stiffly, getting up and moving towards the office door. It was their first approach to a quarrel.
But Anne flew after him and dragged him back.
"Now, Gilbert, you are not `going off mad.' Sit down here and I'll apologise bee-YEW-ti-fully, I shouldn't have said that. But--oh, if you knew--"
Anne checked herself just in time. She had been on the very verge of betraying Leslie's secret.
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|Anne's House of Dreams
Lucy Maud Montgomery
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