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Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset (William Somerset) Maugham
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Her voice was so weak that it seemed to come already from a great
distance. The child did not answer, but smiled comfortably. He was very
happy in the large, warm bed, with those soft arms about him. He tried to
make himself smaller still as he cuddled up against his mother, and he
kissed her sleepily. In a moment he closed his eyes and was fast asleep.
The doctor came forwards and stood by the bed-side.

"Oh, don't take him away yet," she moaned.

The doctor, without answering, looked at her gravely. Knowing she would
not be allowed to keep the child much longer, the woman kissed him again;
and she passed her hand down his body till she came to his feet; she held
the right foot in her hand and felt the five small toes; and then slowly
passed her hand over the left one. She gave a sob.

"What's the matter?" said the doctor. "You're tired."

She shook her head, unable to speak, and the tears rolled down her cheeks.
The doctor bent down.

"Let me take him."

She was too weak to resist his wish, and she gave the child up. The doctor
handed him back to his nurse.

"You'd better put him back in his own bed."

"Very well, sir." The little boy, still sleeping, was taken away. His
mother sobbed now broken-heartedly.