There was no escaping what he had realized as he fought for warmth in the night. With or without him, the moon and the wind would go on, rising and falling. The land would keep stretching ahead until it hit the sea. People would keep dying. It made no difference if Harold walked, or trembled, or stayed at home.
He saw the reflection of her face in a compact mirror as she painted on her re lips. She did it with such care, he had felt she was trapping something behind the colour. She had touched life, played with it a little, bit it was a slippery bugger, and finally we must close the door, and leave it behind.
It must be the same all over England. People were buying milk, or filing their cars with petrol, or even posting letters. And what no one else knew was the appalling weight of the thing they were carrying inside. The inhuman effort it took sometimes to be normal, and a part of things that appeared both easy and every day. The lonliness of that.