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172

(1921) Author: Sigrid Undset
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He bent over it and held it long to his lips — longer than
ever before.

IX



Gunnar Heggen and Jenny Winge were to have an
exhibition together in November. He came to town
for that purpose. He had been in the country that
summer, painting red granite, green pines, and blue sky, and
had lately been to Stockholm, where he had sold a picture.

“How is Cesca?” asked Jenny, when Heggen was in her
studio one morning having a drink.

“Cesca is all right.” Gunnar took a gulp from his glass,
smoked, and looked at Jenny, and she looked at him.

It was so nice to be together again and talk about people
and things she had got so far away from. It seemed almost
as if it had been in a remote country beyond all oceans that
she had known him and Cesca, lived and worked with them, and
been happy with them.

She looked at his open sunburnt face and crooked nose; it
had been broken when he was a child. Cesca once said that
the blow had saved Gunnar’s face from being the most perfect
fashion-plate type.

There was some truth in it. Looking at his features separately,
they were exactly those of a rustic Adonis. His brown
hair curled over a low, broad forehead and big steely blue
eyes; the mouth was red, with full lips and beautiful white
teeth. His face and his strong neck were tanned by the sun,
and his broad, somewhat short body with well-knit muscles
was almost brutally well shaped. But the sensual mouth and
heavy eyelids had a peculiarly innocent and unaffected
expression, and his smile could be most refined. The hands
were regular working hands, with short fingers and strong
joints, but the way he moved them was particularly graceful.

He had grown thinner, but looked very well and contented,

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