|• Main||• Contacts|
Clara didn't gloat. She changed the subject immediately. But she had
started him thinking and he believed she was partly right. He felt like
a factory-owner who after accusing a clerk of dishonesty finds that his
own son, in the office, is changing the books once a week. His poor,
mistreated will that he had been holding up to the scorn of himself and
his friends, stood before him innocent, and his judgment walked off to
prison with the unconfinable imp, imagination, dancing in mocking glee
beside him. Clara's was the only advice he ever asked without dictating
the answer himself--except, perhaps, in his talks with Monsignor Darcy.
How he loved to do any sort of thing with Clara! Shopping with her was a
rare, epicurean dream. In every store where she had ever traded she was
whispered about as the beautiful Mrs. Page.
"I'll bet she won't stay single long."
"Well, don't scream it out. She ain't lookin' for no advice."
"_Ain't_ she beautiful!"
(Enter a floor-walker--silence till he moves forward, smirking.)
"Society person, ain't she?"
"Yeah, but poor now, I guess; so they say."
"Gee! girls, _ain't_ she some kid!"
And Clara beamed on all alike. Amory believed that tradespeople gave her
discounts, sometimes to her knowledge and sometimes without it. He knew
she dressed very well, had always the best of everything in the house,
and was inevitably waited upon by the head floor-walker at the very
Sometimes they would go to church together on Sunday and he would walk
beside her and revel in her cheeks moist from the soft water in the new
air. She was very devout, always had been, and God knows what heights
she attained and what strength she drew down to herself when she knelt
and bent her golden hair into the stained-glass light.
"St. Cecelia," he cried aloud one day, quite involuntarily, and the
people turned and peered, and the priest paused in his sermon and Clara
and Amory turned to fiery red.
That was the last Sunday they had, for he spoiled it all that night. He
couldn't help it.
Page 21 from 35: Back 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20  22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 Forward