HABITS OF OBJECTIONABLE PERSONS
peculiar interest to him. “You will note, I am sure, Monsieur Herbert, the marvellous carving especially in the dress and about the neck.”
Before Herbert could answer, Louis craned his head and a disgusted look overspread his face. “I hope,” he said, “she didn’t look like that, Lemois—squatty old party with a snub nose.”
Herbert, ignoring Louis’ aside, reached over and took the little image in his fingers.
“Squatty or not, Louis, it is an exquisite bit—modern Tanagra, really. Seventeenth century, isn’t it, Lemois?”
Lemois nodded. If he had heard Louis’ remark he gave no sign of the fact.
“Yes,” continued Herbert, “and wonderfully modelled. We can’t do these things now—not in this way”—and he passed it to The Engineer, who turned it upsidedown, as if it were a teacup, glanced at the bottom in search of its mark, and without a word handed it back.
Lemois replaced the precious object in the triptych, his mind still filled with his favorite topic, and, turning suddenly, wheeled a richly upholstered chair from a far corner into the light.
“And here is another relic of Madame Sé-