«What shall I say?» thought Hester to herself. «No! If this be the price of the child's sympathy, I cannot pay it.»
Then she spoke aloud. «Silly Pearl,» said she, «what questions are these? There are many things in this world that a child must not ask about.
What know I of the minister's heart? And as for the scarlet letter, I wear it for the sake of its gold-thread.»
In all the seven bygone years, Hester Prynne had never before been false to the symbol on her bosom.”