Page:Hopkinson Smith--armchair at the inn.djvu/45

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that way. You would look very ugly on a pedestal; your shoulders are too big and your arms are like a blacksmith’s, and then you would smash all my flowers getting up. No—I would have you do nothing and be nothing but your delightful and charming self. This room of mine, the ‘Little Dwarf,’ is built for laughter, and you have plenty of it. And now, gentlemen”—he was the landlord once more—both elbows uptilted in a shrug, his shoulders level with his ears—“at what time shall we serve dinner?”

“Not until Brierley comes,” I interposed after we were through laughing at Louis’ discomfiture. “He is due now—the Wigwag train from Pont du Sable ought to be in any minute.”

“Is Marc coming with him?” asked Herbert, pushing his chair back from the crackling blaze.

“No—Marc can’t get here until late. He’s fallen in love for the hundredth time. Some countess or duchess, I understand—he is staying at her château, or was. Not far from here, so he told Le Blanc.”

“Was walking past her garden gate,” broke in Louis, “squinting at her flowers, no doubt, when she asked him in to tea—or is it another Fontainebleau affair?”