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"Perhaps some invitation to a court ball. We'll go, eh, Agnes?"

He came like the fine, strong gentleman he was, across the garden, taking the note from her and tearing it open. He began straightway to read, my lady on tip-toe behind him reading over his shoulder, and holding her contaminated hands away from his coat. His face grew puzzled at the first, then as he seemed to finish, he stood a pace apart from my lady and read again. There was murder in his face—yet so white and quiet.

He threw down the note and ground it into the soft earth beneath his heel. Then he caught my lady firmly by both her shoulders and held her fast, at full arm's length, gazing steadily into her face.

"God in heaven," as Jacques said to me; "Master, what eyes has that Chevalier de la Mora! No man could lie to him with those eyes reading what a fellow thought." Jacques could not make himself to leave; he stood rigid and watched.

"Well, Madame?"

"She tried to laugh, but her husband's face forbade that this could be a spark of lover's play.

"Well, Madame?"

"Why, Charles, what is the matter with you, you behave so strangely?"

The Chevalier had grown an older man, his face stern and resolute, eyes a-glitter, and mouth drawn in tense, determined lines. A most dangerous man.

"Why, Charles, what is the matter?"