Page:Hopkinson Smith--armchair at the inn.djvu/213

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my precious things until I have worked myself into a perspiration, and then I must drive like Jehu until I get chilled to the bone. Catch cold!—my dear Monsieur Brierley—I never catch cold! I should be quite ashamed of myself if I did.”

We were inside the Marmouset now, Marc unbuttoning her outer garments, revealing her plump, penguin-shaped body clothed in a blouse of mouse-colored corduroy with a short skirt to match, her customary red silk scarf about her throat; the silver watch with its leather strap, which hung from the pocket of her blouse, her only ornament.

“Take my cap, please,” and she handed it to the ever-obsequious Marc, who always seemed to have lost his wits and identity in her presence. This done, she ran her fingers through her fluff of gray hair, caught it in a twist with her hand, skewered it with a tortoise-shell pin, and, with a “So! that’s all over,” drew up a chair to the blaze and settled herself in it, talking all the time, the men crowding about her to catch her every word.

“And now how about that young fisherman? Thank you, Monsieur Herbert. No, that is quite enough; a thimbleful of cognac is just