The Children of the Castle

The Children of the Castle
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Книга "The Children of the Castle", автором которой является Mrs. Molesworth, представляет собой захватывающую работу в жанре Зарубежная классика. В этом произведении автор рассказывает увлекательную историю, которая не оставит равнодушными читателей.

Автор мастерски воссоздает атмосферу напряженности и интриги, погружая читателя в мир загадок и тайн, который скрывается за хрупкой поверхностью обыденности. С прекрасным чувством языка и виртуозностью сюжетного развития, Mrs. Molesworth позволяет читателю погрузиться в сложные эмоциональные переживания героев и проникнуться их судьбами. Molesworth настолько живо и точно передает неповторимые нюансы человеческой психологии, что каждая страница книги становится путешествием в глубины человеческой души.

"The Children of the Castle" - это не только захватывающая история, но и искусство, проникнутое глубокими мыслями и философскими размышлениями. Это произведение призвано вызвать у читателя эмоциональные отклики, задуматься о важных жизненных вопросах и открыть новые горизонты восприятия мира.

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Chapter One.

Ruby and Mavis

“Hast thou seen that lordly castle, That castle by the sea? Golden and red above it The clouds float gorgeously.”

Trans. of Uhland: Longfellow.

Do you remember Gratian – Gratian Conyfer, the godson of the four winds, the boy who lived at the old farmhouse up among the moors, where these strange beautiful sisters used to meet? Do you remember how full of fancies and stories Gratian’s little head was, and how sometimes he put them into words to please Fergus, the lame child he loved so much? The story I am now going to tell you is one of these. I think it was their favourite one. I can not say that it is in the very words in which Gratian used to tell it, for it was not till long, long after those boyish days that it came to be written down. But all the same it is his story.

How long ago it was I cannot say, nor can I tell you exactly where it was. This is not a story for which you will require an atlas, nor a history of England or of any other country, nor a dictionary of dates. All those wise and clever and useful things you may put out of your heads for a bit. I am just going to tell you a story. It was somewhere and somewhen, and I think that will do.

The “it” was a castle – and something else. But first about the castle. It was really worthy of the name, for it was very old and very strong, and in ancient days it had been used as a place of defence, and had a look about it of not having forgotten this. (I am afraid this sounds a very little historical. I must take care.) It was very big too, towering over the sea-washed cliffs on which it stood as if defying the winds and the waves to do their worst, frowning at them with the little round window-eyes of its turrets, like a cross old ogre. But it was a two-faced castle; it was only on one side – the rocky side, where the cliffs went down precipitously to the water – that it looked grim and forbidding. Inland, you could scarcely have believed it was the same castle at all. For here, towards the sunny south, it seemed to change into a gracious, comfortable, hospitably-inviting mansion; it did not look nearly so high on this side, for the ivy-covered turrets had more the effect of dimly dark trees in the background, and the bright wide-windowed rooms opened on to trim lawns and terraces gay with flowers. That was the case in summer-time at least. The whole look of things varied a good deal according to the seasons. In winter, grim as it was, I don’t know but that the fortress-front, so to speak, of the great building had the best of it. For it was grand to watch the waves breaking down below when you knew you were safe and cosy behind the barred panes of the turret windows, those windows pierced in the walls through such a thickness of stone that each was like a little room within a room. And even in winter there were wonderful sunsets to be seen from the children’s favourite turret-room – the one which had two windows to the west and only one to the cold north.

For the “something else” was the children. Much more interesting than the castle – indeed, what would any castle or any house be without them? Not that the castle was not a very interesting place to live in, as you will hear, but all places, I think, need people to bring out their interest. People who have been, sometimes, and sometimes, people that still are. There was a mixture of both in my castle. But first and foremost I will tell you of the children, whose home it was, and perhaps is yet.

There were only two of them, only two, that is to say, who lived there regularly; they were girls, twin-sisters, Ruby and Mavis were their names, and at this time they were nearly twelve years old. I will not say much in description of them, it is best to let you find out about them for yourselves. They were almost exactly the same size; Ruby perhaps a very little the taller, and at first sight every one thought them exceedingly like each other. And so they were, so far as the colour of their hair, the shape of their features, their eyes and complexions went. They were pretty little girls, and they made a pretty pair. But the more you got to know them the less alike you got to think them, till at last you be an to wonder how you ever could have thought them like at all! And even almost at the first glance some differences were to be seen. Ruby was certainly the prettier. Her eyes were brighter, her colour more brilliant, her way of walking and holding herself more graceful, even her very manner of talking was more interesting and attractive.

“What a charming child she is,” said strangers always. “Such pretty winning ways, so sweet and unselfish, so clever and intelligent! What a pity that dull little Mavis is not more like her – why, I thought them the image of each other at first, and now I can scarcely believe they are sisters. I am sure poor Ruby must find Mavis very trying, she is so stupid; but Ruby is so good and patient with her – it quite adds another charm to the dear child.”

This opinion or one like it was always the first expressed – well, perhaps not

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