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drive in the Bois de Boulogne and from there to dinner in a private room at the Café Anglais. During the meal I had got to like her: she lived with her mother, Alexander had told me; though by no means prudish, still less virginal, she was not a coureuse. I thought I might risk connection; but when I got her to take off her clothes and began to caress her sex, she drew away and said quite as a matter of course: "Why not faire minette?"

When I asked her what she meant, she told me frankly: "We women do not get excited in a moment as you men do; why not kiss and tongue me there for a few minutes, then I shall have enjoyed myself and shall be ready . . . ."

I'm afraid I made rather a face for she remarked coolly: "Just as you like, you know. I prefer in a meal the hors d'oeuvres to the pièce de résistance like a good many other women: indeed I often content myself with the hors d'oeuvres and don't take any more. Surely you understand that a woman goes on getting more and more excited for an hour or two and no man is capable of bringing her to the highest pitch of enjoyment while pleasing himself."

"I'm able", I said stubbornly, "I can go on all night if you please me, so we should skip appetizers."

"No, no!" she replied, laughing, "let us have a banquet then, but begin with lips and tongue!"

The delay, the bandying to and fro of argument and above all, the idea of kissing and tonguing her sex, had brought me to coolness and reason. Was I not just as foolish as Bancroft if I yielded to her-an unknown girl.

I replied finally, "No, little lady, your charms are not for me", and I took my seat again at the table and poured myself out some wine. I had the ordinary American or English youth's repugnance to what