Page:Hopkinson Smith--armchair at the inn.djvu/63

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


train my own chefs in my kitchen, and yet I say to you that I could feed my whole clientele sumptuously without ever spilling a drop of blood. I live in that way myself as far as I can, and so would you if you had thought about it.”

“Skimmed milk and hard-boiled eggs for breakfast, I suppose!” roared Louis in derision, “with a lettuce sandwich and a cold turnip for luncheon.”

“No, you upsidedown man! Cheese souffles, omelets in a dozen different ways, stuffed peppers, tomatoes fried, stewed, and fricasseed, oysters, clams——

“And crabs and lobsters?” added Louis.

“Ah! but crabs and lobsters suffer like any other thing which has the power to move; what I am trying to do is to live so that nothing will suffer because of my appetite.”

“And go round looking like a skeleton in a doctor’s office! How could you get these up on boiled cabbage?” and he patted Herbert’s biceps.

“No, my dear Monsieur Louis,” persisted Lemois gravely, still refusing to be side-tracked by the young painter’s onslaughts. “If we loved the things we kill for food as Monsieur