The excerpt represents the core issue or deciding factor on which you must meditate, and is drawn from An Old Maid by Honore de Balzac:|
Mademoiselle Cormon was the only figure presented to his gaze, that
she attracted his eye incessantly, that all the light he had was
concentrated on her, surely his love may be considered natural.
This sentiment, so carefully hidden, increased from day to day.
Desires, sufferings, hopes, and meditations swelled in quietness and
silence the lake widening ever in the young man's breast, as hour by
hour added its drop of water to the volume. And the wider this inward
circle, drawn by the imagination, aided by the senses, grew, the more
imposing Mademoiselle Cormon appeared to Athanase, and the more his
own timidity increased.
The mother had divined the truth. Like all provincial mothers, she