Main  Contacts  
Table of contents
AMORY, SON OF BEATRICE
SPIRES AND GARGOYLES
THE EGOTIST CONSIDERS
NARCISSUS OFF DUTY
THE DEBUTANTE
EXPERIMENTS IN CONVALESCENCE
YOUNG IRONY
THE SUPERCILIOUS SACRIFICE
THE EGOTIST BECOMES A PERSONAGE

 

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 

least. 

 

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  [21]  22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32   33   34   35   Forward