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his head did him a lot of good—hurt Monsieur Lemois, I fancy, more than it did Gaston—set him to thinking—maybe now it will come out all right.”

“No; it only made him the more obstinate; he has forbidden the boy the place.”

“And is that why you are so happy?”

The shrewd, kindly eyes of the old woman looked into mine and then a sudden smile flung a myriad of wrinkles across her face.

“I am happy, monsieur,” she whispered as I followed her around the table with the box of knives and forks, “because things are getting brighter. Gaston has a stall now in the market where he can sell his fish himself, and where Mignon can see him once in a while. She is with him now. You know the hucksters paid him what they pleased, and sometimes, even when Gaston’s catch was big, he made only a few francs some mornings. And the mother and he were obliged to take what they could get, for you cannot wait with fish when the weather is hot. To buy the stall and pay for it all at once was what troubled them, so it is a great day for Gaston—Monsieur Gaston Duprè now”—and her eyes twinkled. “Even if Monsieur Lemois holds out—and he may,