Jane Eyre HTML version

Chapter 24
As I rose and dressed, I thought over what had happened, and wondered if it
were a dream. I could not be certain of the reality till I had seen Mr. Rochester
again, and heard him renew his words of love and promise.
While arranging my hair, I looked at my face in the glass, and felt it was no longer
plain: there was hope in its aspect and life in its colour; and my eyes seemed as
if they had beheld the fount of fruition, and borrowed beams from the lustrous
ripple. I had often been unwilling to look at my master, because I feared he could
not be pleased at my look; but I was sure I might lift my face to his now, and not
cool his affection by its expression. I took a plain but clean and light summer
dress from my drawer and put it on: it seemed no attire had ever so well become
me, because none had I ever worn in so blissful a mood.
I was not surprised, when I ran down into the hall, to see that a brilliant June
morning had succeeded to the tempest of the night; and to feel, through the open
glass door, the breathing of a fresh and fragrant breeze. Nature must be
gladsome when I was so happy. A beggar-woman and her little boy--pale, ragged
objects both--were coming up the walk, and I ran down and gave them all the
money I happened to have in my purse--some three or four shillings: good or
bad, they must partake of my jubilee. The rooks cawed, and blither birds sang;
but nothing was so merry or so musical as my own rejoicing heart.
Mrs. Fairfax surprised me by looking out of the window with a sad countenance,
and saying gravely--"Miss Eyre, will you come to breakfast?" During the meal she
was quiet and cool: but I could not undeceive her then. I must wait for my master
to give explanations; and so must she. I ate what I could, and then I hastened
upstairs. I met Adele leaving the schoolroom.
"Where are you going? It is time for lessons."
"Mr. Rochester has sent me away to the nursery."
"Where is he?"
"In there," pointing to the apartment she had left; and I went in, and there he
"Come and bid me good-morning," said he. I gladly advanced; and it was not
merely a cold word now, or even a shake of the hand that I received, but an
embrace and a kiss. It seemed natural: it seemed genial to be so well loved, so
caressed by him.
"Jane, you look blooming, and smiling, and pretty," said he: "truly pretty this
morning. Is this my pale, little elf? Is this my mustard-seed? This little sunny-
faced girl with the dimpled cheek and rosy lips; the satin-smooth hazel hair, and
the radiant hazel eyes?" (I had green eyes, reader; but you must excuse the
mistake: for him they were new-dyed, I suppose.)
"It is Jane Eyre, sir."
"Soon to be Jane Rochester," he added: "in four weeks, Janet; not a day more.
Do you hear that?"