This is a novel book. It was now almost too dark to distinguish objects; duskier and vaguer became the flat world of marshes, set here and there with cypress and bounded only by far horizons; and at last land and water disappeared behind the gathered curtains of the night. There was no sound from the waste except the wind among the withered reeds and the furrowing splash of wheel and hoof over the submerged causeway. The boy who was driving had scarcely spoken since he strapped Marche's gun cases and valise to the rear of the rickety wagon at the railroad station. Marche, too, remained silent, preoccupied with his own reflections. Wrapped in his fur lined coat, arms folded, he sat doubled forward, feeling the Southern swamp chill busy with his bones. Now and then he was obliged to relight his pipe, but the cold bit at his fingers, and he hurried to protect himself again with heavy gloves. The small, rough hands of the boy who was driving were naked, and finally Marche mentioned it, asking the child if he were not cold.