A Voyage to Arcturus HTML version

Chapter 12. Spadevil
Maskull found that his new organs had no independent function of their own, but only
intensified and altered his other senses. When he used his eyes, ears, or nostrils, the same
objects presented themselves to him, but his judgment concerning them was different.
Previously all external things had existed for him; now he existed for them. According to
whether they served his purpose or were in harmony with his nature, or otherwise, they
had been pleasant or painful. Now these words "pleasure" and "pain" simply had no
The other two watched him, while he was making himself acquainted with his new
mental outlook. He smiled at them.
"You were quite right, Tydomin," he said, in a bold, cheerful voice. "We have been fools.
So near the light all the time, and we never guessed it. Always buried in the past or future
- systematically ignoring the present - and now it turns out that apart from the present we
have no life at all."
"Thank Spadevil for it,,, she answered, more loudly than usual.
Maskull looked at the man's dark, concrete form. "Spadevil, now I mean to follow you to
the end. I can do nothing less."
The severe face showed no sign of gratification - not a muscle relaxed.
"Watch that you don't lose your gift," he said gruffly.
Tydomin spoke. "You promised that I should enter Sant with you."
"Attach yourself to the truth, not to me. For I may die before you, but the truth will
accompany you to your death. However, now let us journey together, all three of us."
The words had not left his mouth before he put his face against the fine, driving snow,
and pressed onward toward his destination. He walked with a long stride; Tydomin was
obliged to half run. in order to keep up with him. The three travelled abreast; Spadevil in
the middle. The fog was so dense that it was impossible to see a hundred yards ahead.
The ground was covered by the green snow. The wind blew in gusts from the Sant
highlands. and was piercingly cold.
"Spadevil, are you a man. or more than a man?" asked Maskull.
"He that is not more than a man is nothing."
"Where have you now come from?"