Excerpt: ... sometimes lack cleverness. But I know very well that I was not as I should have been, and I beg your pardon. That is the reason why I came. Let us be good friends, since there is yet time." He repeated, with sombre softness, that he loved her. The first hours of that love had been easy and delightful. He had only desired to see her, and to see her again. But soon she had troubled him. The evil had come suddenly and violently one day on the terrace of Fiesole. And now he had not the courage to suffer and say nothing. He had not come with a fixed design. If he spoke of his passion he spoke by force and in spite of himself; in the strong necessity of talking of her to herself, since she was for him the only being in the world. His life was no longer in himself, it was in her. She should know it, then, that he was in love with her, not with vague tenderness, but with cruel ardor. Alas! his imagination was exact and precise. He saw her continually, and she tortured him. And then it seemed to him that they might have joys which should make life worth living. Their existence might be a work of art, beautiful and hidden. They would think, comprehend, and feel together. It would be a marvellous world of emotions and ideas. "We could make of life a delightful garden." She feigned to think that the dream was innocent. "You know very well that I am susceptible to the charm of your mind. It has become a necessity to see you and hear you. I have allowed this to be only too plain to you. Count upon my friendship and do not torment yourself." She extended her hand to him. He did not take it, but replied, brusquely: "I do not desire your friendship. I will not have it. I must have you entirely or never see you again. You know that very well. Why do you extend your hand to me with derisive phrases? Whether you wished it or not, you have made me desperately in love with you. You have become my evil, my suffering, my torture, and you ask me to be an agreeable friend....
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Geboren am 16.04.1844 in Paris, gestorben am 12.10.1924 in Saint-Cyr-sur-Loire bei Tours. Sein richtiger Name ist Jaques-Anatole François Thibault. Er war Sohn eines Buchhändlers und Antiquars. Er besuchte die Schule in Paris, arbeitete als Lektor und später 10 Jahre als Bibliothekar. Seine erste Ehe (1877) wurde 1892 geschieden. 1896 wurde er Mitglied der Académie Française. Anatole France erhielt 1921 den Nobelpreis für Literatur. Seine Bücher wurden 1922 auf den Index der katholischen Kirche gesetzt.
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