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PinkMonkey.com Digital Library-The Awakening by Kate Chopin


thoroughly acquainted with him. He kept her busy serving him and
ministering to his wants. It amused her to do so. She would not
permit a servant or one of the children to do anything for him
which she might do herself. Her husband noticed, and thought it
was the expression of a deep filial attachment which he had never
suspected.

The Colonel drank numerous "toddies" during the course of the
day, which left him, however, imperturbed. He was an expert at
concocting strong drinks. He had even invented some, to which he
had given fantastic names, and for whose manufacture he required
diverse ingredients that it devolved upon Edna to procure for him.

When Doctor Mandelet dined with the Pontelliers on Thursday he
could discern in Mrs. Pontellier no trace of that morbid condition
which her husband had reported to him. She was excited and in a
manner radiant. She and her father had been to the race course,
and their thoughts when they seated themselves at table were still
occupied with the events of the afternoon, and their talk was still
of the track. The Doctor had not kept pace with turf affairs. He
had certain recollections of racing in what he called "the good old
times" when the Lecompte stables flourished, and he drew upon this
fund of memories so that he might not be left out and seem wholly
devoid of the modern spirit. But he failed to impose upon the
Colonel, and was even far from impressing him with this trumped-up
knowledge of bygone days. Edna had staked her father on his last
venture, with the most gratifying results to both of them.

Besides, they had met some very charming people, according
to the Colonel's impressions. Mrs. Mortimer Merriman and
Mrs. James Highcamp, who were there with Alcee Arobin,
had joined them and had enlivened the hours in a fashion
that warmed him to think of.

Mr. Pontellier himself had no particular leaning toward
horseracing, and was even rather inclined to discourage it as a pastime,
especially when he considered the fate of that blue-grass farm in
Kentucky. He endeavored, in a general way, to express a particular
disapproval, and only succeeded in arousing the ire and opposition
of his father-in-law. A pretty dispute followed, in which Edna
warmly espoused her father's cause and the Doctor remained neutral.

He observed his hostess attentively from under his shaggy
brows, and noted a subtle change which had transformed her from the
listless woman he had known into a being who, for the moment,
seemed palpitant with the forces of life. Her speech was warm and
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PinkMonkey.com Digital Library-The Awakening by Kate Chopin



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