Page:Hopkinson Smith--armchair at the inn.djvu/310

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.


fore, would be quartered in the reconstructed villa. Certainly not any of her visitors—and most assuredly not Marc!

“Take my advice and stop guessing,” laughed the Frenchman; “she’ll tell you when she gets ready, and not before. And she’ll have the wing completed on time, for nothing daunts her. To want a thing done is, with her, to have it finished. The new wing was an afterthought, and yet it did not delay the work an hour. She’ll be serving tea in that wreck next week.”

“It is because madame la marquise was born with a gift,” remarked Lemois dryly from his seat near the fire. “Her mind is constructive, and everything madame touches must have a definite beginning and lead up to a definite ending. Her sanity is shown in her never trying to do things for which she is not fitted. As a musician, or a painter, or even a sculptor, or in any occupation demanding a fine imagination, madame, it seems to me, would have been a pathetic failure.”

“How about an antiquary?” remarked Louis, blowing a ring of smoke across the table, a quizzical smile lighting up his face.

“As an antiquary, my dear Monsieur Louis,