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THE BLACK WOLF'S BREED

"Well, that is enough for this morning; you may go; these things weary me."

"Celeste, Celeste, how long is this to continue? will you never—"

"Madame," she corrected positively, rumpling and smoothing out again the paper in her lap.

"As you will," with an air of hopeless protest. "Do you mean always to send me away when our business is completed—?"

"Was it not our agreement?"

"Yes, but I thought—"

"You had no right to think."

"A man must needs think whether he will or no, what is of life itself. Are you a woman of ice? Do you not realize I sell all I hold most dear, the confidence born of a life-time's honest service to my King, my own honour, only to serve you, to be with you?"

"I am weary. It is time for you to go."

"Yes, but is there nothing else? You agreed—"

"Oh, I know, why remind me?" She turned upon him fiercely. "Do you wish to make me hate you? Now you are only an object of indifference, objectionable to me as are all men who make love, and sigh, and worry me. Do you wish me to hate and despise you more than the rest?"

"God forbid! But—"

"You still insist?"

"Yes, I must have my thirty pieces of silver, the price of my treachery," de Valence returned bitterly; "men die in the Bastille for lesser offencses than mine."