Lost Face by Jack London

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The Project Gutenberg eBook, Lost Face, by Jack London

This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with
almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or
re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.net

Title: Lost Face

Author: Jack London

Release Date: May 12, 2005 [eBook #2429]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ISO-646-US (US-ASCII)


Transcribed from the 1919 Mills and Boon edition by David Price, email

by Jack London


Lost Face
To Build a Fire
That Spot
Flush of Gold
The Passing of Marcus O'Brien
The Wit of Porportuk


It was the end. Subienkow had travelled a long trail of bitterness and
horror, homing like a dove for the capitals of Europe, and here, farther
away than ever, in Russian America, the trail ceased. He sat in the
snow, arms tied behind him, waiting the torture. He stared curiously
before him at a huge Cossack, prone in the snow, moaning in his pain. The
men had finished handling the giant and turned him over to the women.
That they exceeded the fiendishness of the men, the man's cries attested.

Subienkow looked on, and shuddered. He was not afraid to die. He had
carried his life too long in his hands, on that weary trail from Warsaw
to Nulato, to shudder at mere dying. But he objected to the torture. It
offended his soul. And this offence, in turn, was not due to the mere
pain he must endure, but to the sorry spectacle the pain would make of
him. He knew that he would pray, and beg, and entreat, even as Big Ivan
and the others that had gone before. This would not be nice. To pass
out bravely and cleanly, with a smile and a jest--ah! that would have
been the way. But to lose control, to have his soul upset by the pangs
of the flesh, to screech and gibber like an ape, to become the veriest
beast--ah, that was what was so terrible.

There had been no chance to escape. From the beginning, when he dreamed
the fiery dream of Poland's independence, he had become a puppet in the
hands of Fate. From the beginning, at Warsaw, at St. Petersburg, in the
Siberian mines, in Kamtchatka, on the crazy boats of the fur-thieves,
Fate had been driving him to this end. Without doubt, in the foundations
of the world was graved this end for him--for him, who was so fine and
sensitive, whose nerves scarcely sheltered under his skin, who was a
dreamer, and a poet, and an artist. Before he was dreamed of, it had
been determined that the quivering bundle of sensitiveness that
constituted him should be doomed to live in raw and howling savagery, and
to die in this far land of night, in this dark place beyond the last
boundaries of the world.

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Books | Photos | Paul Mutton | Mon 25th Jan 2021, 22:22