e suddenly became dim; Simon rose irritably and went to the single window, where he raised the green shade to its greatest height. Storm-clouds rolling up from the west had obscured the descending sun so that the countryside, with its rolling fields of grain and patches of thick woodland, which a moment since had been laved in a golden flood, now looked grim and gray beneath the deepening shadows. The tanner studied the gloomy prospect with angry eyes, finding in it some reflection of his own situation, and the face which he raised to the heavens was as black as the clouds themselves.
His was the startled, half-uncomprehending fury of the bull at the first stinging dart of the picador. Domineering and ever dominant, he had been accustomed throughout his life to impose his will upon others. Shrewd and capable in his chosen business, successful in the limited area of his activities, he had come perilously close to believing himself omnipotent, not only in all that pertained to his own destiny, but in the