But one day in Paimpol, hearing that La Marie had just got in, Gaud felt possessed with a kind of fever. All her quiet composure disappeared; she abruptly finished up her work, without quite knowing why, and set off home sooner than usual.
Upon the road, as she hurried on, she recognised him, at some distance off, coming towards her. She trembled and felt her strength giving way. He was now quite close, only about twenty steps off, his head erect and his hair curling out from beneath his fisher’s cap. She was so taken by surprise at this meeting, that she was afraid she might fall, and then he would understand all; she would die of very shame at it. She thought, too, she was not looking well, but wearied by the hurried work. She would have done anything to be hidden away under the reeds or in one of the ferret-holes.
He also had taken a backward step, as if to turn in another direction. But it was too late now. Both met in the narrow path. Not to touch her, he drew up against the bank, with a side swerve like a skittish horse, looking at her in a wild, stealthy way.