humiliate Mme. Paulhat-Durand a little, and to take a sort of vengeance upon her by catchicig the contemptuous and haughty creature in the very act of catering to lust.
I regretted this old man, who now exercised over me all the seductions of the unknown, all the charms of an inaccessible ideal. And I found pleasure in picturing him to my fancy, â€” a spruce old man, with soft hands, a pretty smile, a pink and shaven face, and gay, and generous, and good- natured, not so much a maniac as M. Rabour, allow- ing himself to be led by me, like a little dog.
"Come here. Come, come here."
And he came, caressing, frisking about, with a kind and submissive look.
"Now sit up."
And he sat up, in such a funny way, with his forepaws beating the air.
"Oh! the good bow-wow! "
I gave him sugar; I stroked his silky skin. He no longer disgusted me. And again I reflected:
"How stupid I am, all the same! A good doggy, a fine garden, a fine house, money, tran- quillity, an assured future, â€” to think that I have refused all these, and without knowing why. And never to know what I want, and never to will what I desire! At bottom I am afraid of man, â€” worse than that, I have a disgust for man, â€” when he is far away. When he is near me, I am capable of