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followed after things she loved, leaving the great husk.
In mid-August came a letter from Monsignor Darcy, who had evidently just
stumbled on his address:
MY DEAR BOY:--
Your last letter was quite enough to make me worry about you. It was
not a bit like yourself. Reading between the lines I should imagine that
your engagement to this girl is making you rather unhappy, and I see you
have lost all the feeling of romance that you had before the war. You
make a great mistake if you think you can be romantic without religion.
Sometimes I think that with both of us the secret of success, when we
find it, is the mystical element in us: something flows into us that
enlarges our personalities, and when it ebbs out our personalities
shrink; I should call your last two letters rather shrivelled. Beware of
losing yourself in the personality of another being, man or woman.
His Eminence Cardinal O'Neill and the Bishop of Boston are staying with
me at present, so it is hard for me to get a moment to write, but I wish
you would come up here later if only for a week-end. I go to Washington
What I shall do in the future is hanging in the balance. Absolutely
between ourselves I should not be surprised to see the red hat of a
cardinal descend upon my unworthy head within the next eight months. In
any event, I should like to have a house in New York or Washington where
you could drop in for week-ends.
Amory, I'm very glad we're both alive; this war could easily have been
the end of a brilliant family. But in regard to matrimony, you are now
at the most dangerous period of your life. You might marry in haste and
repent at leisure, but I think you won't. From what you write me
about the present calamitous state of your finances, what you want is
naturally impossible. However, if I judge you by the means I usually
choose, I should say that there will be something of an emotional crisis
within the next year.
Do write me. I feel annoyingly out of date on you.
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