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She stared. “I take her from you? I his eyes for a puzzled moment after he had simply prevent your going to her unpre- spoken; then she broke out despairingly: pared. Knowing Fanny as I do, it seemed “Is happiness never more to you, then, to me necessary that you should find a way than this abstract standard of truth?” in advance a way of tiding over the first Durham reflected. “I don't know-it's moment. That, of course, is what we had an instinct. There doesn't seem to be any planned that you shouldn't have. We choice." meant to let you marry, and then- Oh, “Then I am a miserable wretch for not there is no question about the result: we holding my tongue!” are certain of our case-our measures have He shook his head sadly. "That would been taken de loin.” She broke off, as if not have helped me; and it would have oppressed by his stricken silence. “You been a thousand times worse for her.” will think me stupid, but my warning you “Nothing can be as bad for her as losing of this is the only return I know how to make you! Aren't you moved by seeing her for your generosity. I could not bear to need ?” have you say afterward that I had deceived “Horribly—are not you ?” he said, liftyou twice.”
ing his eyes to hers suddenly. “Twice?” He looked at her perplex She started under his look. “You mean, edly, and her colour rose.
why don't I help you? Why don't I use “I deceived you once—that night at your my influence? Ah, if you knew how I have cousin's, when I tried to get you to bribe tried!” me. Even then we meant to consent to the “And you are sure that nothing can be divorce-it was decided the first day that I done?” saw you.” He was silent, and she added, “Nothing, nothing: what arguments can with one of her mocking gestures: “You I use? We abhor divorce-we go against see from what a milieu you are taking her!” our religion in consenting to it-and noth
Durham groaned. “She will never give ing short of recovering the boy could possiup her son!"
bly justify us." “How can she help it? After you are Durham turned slowly away. “Then married there will be no choice."
there is nothing to be done,” he said, speak“No-but there is one now.”
ing more to himself than to her. “Now?” She sprang to her feet, clasp He felt her light touch on his arm. “Wait! ing her hands in dismay. “Haven't I made There is one thing more--" She stood it clear to you? Haven't I shown you your close to him, with entreaty written on her course?” She paused, and then brought small passionate face. “There is one thing out with emphasis: "I love Fanny, and I more," she repeated. “And that is, to beam ready to trust her happiness to you." lieve that I am deceiving you again.”
“I shall have nothing to do with her hap He stopped short with a bewildered stare. piness," he repeated doggedly.
“That you are deceiving me-about the She stood close to him, with a look in- boy?" tently fixed on his face. "Are you afraid?” Yes-yes; why shouldn't I? You're she asked with one of her mocking flashes. so credulous—the temptation is irresisti“ Afraid?"
ble." “Of not being able to make it up to her "Ah, it would be too easy to find out
“Don't try, then! Go on as if nothing Their eyes met, and he returned her look had happened. I have been lying to you,” steadily.
she declared with vehemence. “No; if I had the chance, I believe I “Do you give me your word of honour?” could.”
he rejoined. “I know you could!” she exclaimed. “A liar's? I haven't any! Take the logic
“That's the worst of it,” he said with a of the facts instead. What reason have you cheerless laugh.
to believe any good of me? And what rea. “The worst - ?”
son have I to do any to you? Why on earth "Don't you see that I can't deceive her? should I betray my family for your benefit? Can't trick her into marrying me now?” Ah, don't let yourself be deceived to the
Madame de Treymes continued to hold end!” She sparkled up at him, her eyes
suffused with mockery; but on the lashes he He stood silent, with his eyes fixed on the saw a tear.
ground. Then he took one of her hands He shook his head sadly. "I should and raised it to his lips. first have to find a reason for your deceiv “You poor, good woman!" he said gravely. ing me.”
Her hand trembled as she drew it away. “Why, I gave it to you long ago. I “You're going to her-straight from here?” wanted to punish you—and now I've pun “Yes-straight from here." ished you enough.
“To tell her everything--to renounce “Yes, you've punished me enough," he your hope?" conceded.
"That is what it amounts to, I suppose.” The tear gathered and fell down her thin She watched him cross the room and lay cheek. “It's you who are punishing me his hand on the door. now. I tell you I'm false to the core. Look “Ah, you poor, good man!” she said back and see what I've done to you!” with a sob.
IN THE DUSK
By Meredith Nicholson
Alone she sits, merged in the gathering dusk,
As slow the unlit, loveless casement blurs;
And oh, that brave, heart-broken smile of hers!
A cry inaudible lurks in her eyes,
That question now, where once was sweet belief;
Hers are the gray robes of the nuns of grief.
Yet Death, who may bestow where Love refuse,
Passes her door; and sometimes flickering gleams
Among the bubbles of her girlhood dreams.
In hours when her grave children offer dole
Of love, awed by the need that she must hide,
Beneath the iron armor of her pride.
But her days pass with tramp of heavy years
Long worn with wars, home-seeking wanderers;
And oh, that brave heart-broken smile of hers!
ILLUSTRATIONS FROM THE PAGES OF GEORGE WRIGHT'S SKETCH-BOOK
TREETS are commonly supposed to
be made of bricks and mortar, but as
a matter of fact these materials only go to supply the background. Streets are really made of human beings, and light and air-especially human beings. I remember prowling once at midnight in a Moorish town, and getting well lost for my pains. The deserted streets, which seemed to hate following a straight line for more than a couple of hundred feet, were picturesque enough with the moonlight breaking their darkness here and there; but they were really expressionless until, turning the corner, I nearly stumbled against a stalwart Moor who stood leaning motionless upon his musket. There was something about his dress and his attitude that seemed almost too good to be true; for a moment he wore the air of a theatrical episode, as though he had been deliberately "staged " there to give my Western eyes a new sensation. But how the pure human nature of
him transformed the dreary street! To a lost traveller he changed the whole face of things in an instant. A picture of that street without him would have been rothing more than a conventional picture of light and shade. My turbaned sentinel filled it with vitality and interest. The point needs no emphasis, yet it is interesting to consider how one is perpetually coming back to it, disregardful of that background of which we are all inclined, and not unreasonably inclined, to make so much.
I suppose no one was ever more disposed than was Balzac to get all that could be got out of the background. His novels are rich in passages-some of them so long that they fill a good part of the chapter-in which the characters of streets are established with a profound feeling for the individuality of inanimate things. He loved to ramble about the city, and wherever he went he made
the very stones tell him tales of nlyz pana
human life, and this not through
what we might call their specific historical associations, but through the peculiar signs of wear and tear they showed, with such differences, in each locality. Balzac is unique in finding in a building, in some single edifice or in a group of houses, the personal atmosphere, the human atmosphere, that hangs, let us say, about an old garment. But he was the first to turn from the background to the figures. Listen to one of his confessions:
If I met a working man and his wife in the streets between eleven o'clock and midnight on their way home from the Ambigu Comique, I