Larry Darrant has burst in up on his older brother, Keith Darrant,
A Polish girl. She—her father died over here when she was sixteen, and left her all alone. There was a mongrel living in the same house who married her—or pretended to. She's very pretty, Keith. He left her with a baby coming. She lost it, and nearly starved. Then another fellow took her on, and she lived with him two years, till that brute turned up again and made her go back to him. He used to beat her black and blue. He'd left her again when—I met her. She was taking anybody then.
[He stops, passes his hand over his lips, looks up at KEITH, and goes on defiantly]
I never met a sweeter woman, or a truer, that I swear. Woman! She's only twenty now! When I went to her last night, that devil had found her out again. He came for me—a bullying, great, hulking brute. Look! [He touches a dark mark on his forehead] I took his ugly throat, and when I let go—[He stops and his hands drop.]
[In a smothered voice] Dead, Keith. I never knew till afterwards that she was hanging on to him—to h-help me. [Again he wrings his hands.]
John Gaslworthy, The First and the Last [Project Gutenberg]
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