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Never saying a word about it all morning when he was with me."

"Yes," agreed Madame Ratignolle. "I think it was showing us
all--you especially--very little consideration. It wouldn't have
surprised me in any of the others; those Lebruns are all given to
heroics. But I must say I should never have expected such a thing
from Robert. Are you not coming down? Come on, dear; it doesn't
look friendly."

"No," said Edna, a little sullenly. "I can't go to the
trouble of dressing again; I don't feel like it."

"You needn't dress; you look all right; fasten a belt around
your waist. Just look at me!"

"No," persisted Edna; "but you go on. Madame Lebrun might be
offended if we both stayed away."

Madame Ratignolle kissed Edna good-night, and went away, being
in truth rather desirous of joining in the general and animated
conversation which was still in progress concerning Mexico and the

Somewhat later Robert came up, carrying his hand-bag.

"Aren't you feeling well?" he asked.

"Oh, well enough. Are you going right away?"

He lit a match and looked at his watch. "In twenty minutes,"
he said. The sudden and brief flare of the match emphasized the
darkness for a while. He sat down upon a stool which the children
had left out on the porch.

"Get a chair," said Edna.

"This will do," he replied. He put on his soft hat and
nervously took it off again, and wiping his face with his
handkerchief, complained of the heat.

"Take the fan," said Edna, offering it to him.

"Oh, no! Thank you. It does no good; you have to stop fanning
some time, and feel all the more uncomfortable afterward."
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