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Chapter 28 (continued)
He who came upon him so unexpectedly was about to break his rest by thrusting him with his foot, when, glancing at his upturned face, he arrested himself in the very action, and stooping down and shading the candle with his hand, examined his features closely. Close as his first inspection was, it did not suffice, for he passed the light, still carefully shaded as before, across and across his face, and yet observed him with a searching eye.
While he was thus engaged, the sleeper, without any starting or turning round, awoke. There was a kind of fascination in meeting his steady gaze so suddenly, which took from the other the presence of mind to withdraw his eyes, and forced him, as it were, to meet his look. So they remained staring at each other, until Mr Chester at last broke silence, and asked him in a low voice, why he lay sleeping there.
'I thought,' said Hugh, struggling into a sitting posture and gazing at him intently, still, 'that you were a part of my dream. It was a curious one. I hope it may never come true, master.'
'What makes you shiver?'
'The--the cold, I suppose,' he growled, as he shook himself and rose. 'I hardly know where I am yet.'
'Do you know me?' said Mr Chester.
'Ay, I know you,' he answered. 'I was dreaming of you--we're not where I thought we were. That's a comfort.'
He looked round him as he spoke, and in particular looked above his head, as though he half expected to be standing under some object which had had existence in his dream. Then he rubbed his eyes and shook himself again, and followed his conductor into his own rooms.
Mr Chester lighted the candles which stood upon his dressing-table, and wheeling an easy-chair towards the fire, which was yet burning, stirred up a cheerful blaze, sat down before it, and bade his uncouth visitor 'Come here,' and draw his boots off.
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