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  The Angel Of The Revolution George Chetwynd Griffith

Learning The Part

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It was nearly eleven the next morning by the time Arnold and Colston had finished breakfast. This was mostly due to the fact that Arnold had passed an almost entirely sleepless night, and had only begun to doze off towards morning. The events of the previous evening kept on repeating themselves in various sequences time after time, until his brain reeled in the whirl of emotions that they gave rise to.

Although of a strongly mathematical and even mechanical turn of mind, the young engineer was also an enthusiast, and therefore there was a strong colouring of romance in his nature which lifted him far above the level upon which his mere intellect was accustomed to work.

Where intellect alone was concerned--as, for instance, in the working out of a problem in engineering or mechanics--he was cool, calculating, and absolutely unemotional. His highly-disciplined mind was capable of banishing every other subject from consideration save the one which claimed the attention of the hour and of incorporating itself wholly with the work in hand until it was finished.

These qualities would have been quite sufficient to assure his success in life on conventional lines. They would have made him rich, and perhaps famous, but they would never have made him a great inventor; for no one can do anything really great who is not a dreamer as well as a worker.

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It was because he was a dreamer that he had sacrificed everything to the working out of his ideal, and risked his life on the chance of success, and it was for just the same reason that the tremendous purposes of the Brotherhood had been able to fire his imagination with luridly brilliant dreams of a gigantic world-tragedy in which he, armed with almost supernatural powers, should play the central part.

This of itself would have been enough to make all other considerations of trivial moment in his eyes, and to bind him irrevocably to the Brotherhood. He saw, it is true, that a frightful amount of slaughter and suffering would be the price either of success or failure in so terrific a struggle; but he also knew that that struggle was inevitable in some form or other, and whether he took a part in it or not.

But since the last sun had set a new element had come into his life, and was working in line with both his imagination and his ambition. So far he had lived his life without any other human love than what was bound up with his recollections of his home and his boyhood. As a man he had never loved any human being. Science had been his only mistress, and had claimed his undivided devotion, engrossing his mind and intellect completely, but leaving his heart free.

And now, as it were in an instant, a new mistress had come forward out of the unknown. She had put her hand upon his heart, and, though no words of human speech had passed between them, save the merest commonplaces, her soul had said to his, "This is mine. I have called it into life, and for me it shall live until the end."

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The Angel Of The Revolution
George Chetwynd Griffith

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