21. CHAPTER XXI
"Here it is," he said, in a tone of satisfaction, as they came to
a narrow alley. "And then we must go to the left again, and then
straight for'ard for a bit, up Shoe Lane: and then we shall be at
the entry next to the o'erhanging window, where there's the nick in
the road for the water to run. Eh, I can see it all."
"O father, I'm like as if I was stifled," said Eppie. "I
couldn't ha' thought as any folks lived i' this way, so close
together. How pretty the Stone-pits 'ull look when we get back!"
"It looks comical to me, child, now--and smells bad. I can't
think as it usened to smell so."
Here and there a sallow, begrimed face looked out from a gloomy
doorway at the strangers, and increased Eppie's uneasiness, so that
it was a longed-for relief when they issued from the alleys into
Shoe Lane, where there was a broader strip of sky.
"Dear heart!" said Silas, "why, there's people coming out o' the
Yard as if they'd been to chapel at this time o' day--a weekday
Suddenly he started and stood still with a look of distressed
amazement, that alarmed Eppie. They were before an opening in front
of a large factory, from which men and women were streaming for
their midday meal.
"Father," said Eppie, clasping his arm, "what's the matter?"
But she had to speak again and again before Silas could answer her.
"It's gone, child," he said, at last, in strong agitation--
"Lantern Yard's gone. It must ha' been here, because here's the
house with the o'erhanging window--I know that--it's just the
same; but they've made this new opening; and see that big factory!
It's all gone--chapel and all."