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a wicked, ill-disciplined boy he had been, and impulsively drew up
his cuff to exhibit upon his wrist the scar from a saber cut which
he had received in a duel outside of Paris when he was nineteen.
She touched his hand as she scanned the red cicatrice on the inside
of his white wrist. A quick impulse that was somewhat spasmodic
impelled her fingers to close in a sort of clutch upon his hand.
He felt the pressure of her pointed nails in the flesh of his palm.
She arose hastily and walked toward the mantel.
"The sight of a wound or scar always agitates and sickens me,"
she said. "I shouldn't have looked at it."
"I beg your pardon," he entreated, following her; "it never
occurred to me that it might be repulsive."
He stood close to her, and the effrontery in his eyes repelled
the old, vanishing self in her, yet drew all her awakening
sensuousness. He saw enough in her face to impel him to take her
hand and hold it while he said his lingering good night.
"Will you go to the races again?" he asked.
"No," she said. "I've had enough of the races. I don't want
to lose all the money I've won, and I've got to work when the
weather is bright, instead of--"
"Yes; work; to be sure. You promised to show me your work.
What morning may I come up to your atelier? To-morrow?"
"Oh, please don't refuse me! I know something of such things.
I might help you with a stray suggestion or two."
"No. Good night. Why don't you go after you have said good
night? I don't like you," she went on in a high, excited pitch,
attempting to draw away her hand. She felt that her words lacked
dignity and sincerity, and she knew that he felt it.
"I'm sorry you don't like me. I'm sorry I offended you. How