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<- Previous | Table of Contents | Next -> Digital Library-The Awakening by Kate Chopin

lame Susie's real fire than to drag painted blocks along the
banquette on Esplanade Street!

She went with them herself to see the pigs and the cows, to
look at the darkies laying the cane, to thrash the pecan trees, and
catch fish in the back lake. She lived with them a whole week
long, giving them all of herself, and gathering and filling herself
with their young existence. They listened, breathless, when she
told them the house in Esplanade Street was crowded with workmen,
hammering, nailing, sawing, and filling the place with clatter.

They wanted. to know where their bed was; what had been done with
their rocking-horse; and where did Joe sleep, and where had Ellen
gone, and the cook? But, above all, they were fired with a desire
to see the little house around the block. Was there any place to
play? Were there any boys next door? Raoul, with pessimistic
foreboding, was convinced that there were only girls next door.
Where would they sleep, and where would papa sleep? She told them
the fairies would fix it all right.

The old Madame was charmed with Edna's visit, and showered all
manner of delicate attentions upon her. She was delighted to know
that the Esplanade Street house was in a dismantled condition. It
gave her the promise and pretext to keep the children indefinitely.

It was with a wrench and a pang that Edna left her children.
She carried away with her the sound of their voices and
the touch of their cheeks. All along the journey homeward their
presence lingered with her like the memory of a delicious song.
But by the time she had regained the city the song no longer echoed
in her soul. She was again alone.


It happened sometimes when Edna went to see Mademoiselle Reisz
that the little musician was absent, giving a lesson or making some
small necessary household purchase. The key was always left in a
secret hiding-place in the entry, which Edna knew. If Mademoiselle
happened to be away, Edna would usually enter and wait for her
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