Saturday, November 10, 2012

the last book I ever read (The Talented Mr. Ripley, excerpt two)

from The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith:

Tom walked mechanically up the hill. He imagined Dickie in Marge's house now, narrating to her the story of Carlo in the bar, and his peculiar behaviour on the road afterward. Tom knew what Marge would say: 'Why don't you get rid of him, Dickie?' Should he go back and explain to them, he wondered, force them to listen? Tom turned around, looking up at the inscrutable square front of Marge's house up on the hill, at its empty, dark-looking window. His denim jacket was getting wet from the rain. He turned its collar up. Then he walked on quickly up the hill towards Dickie's house. At least, he thought proudly, he hadn't tried to wheedle any more money out of Mr. Greenleaf, and he might have. He might have, even with Dickie's co-operation, if he had ever approached Dickie about it when Dickie had been in a good mood. Anybody else would have, Tom thought, anybody, but he hadn't, and that counted for something.

He stood at the corner of the terrace, staring out at the vague empty line of the horizon and thinking of nothing, feeling nothing except a faint, dreamlike lostness and aloneness. Even Dickie and Marge seemed far away, and what they might be talking about seemed unimportant. He was alone. That was the only important thing. He began to feel a tingling fear at the end of his spine, tingling over his buttocks.

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