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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 282 pages of information about Nightfall.

“He’s not in love with me.”  Yvonne’s eyes widened in genuine scepticism.—­“Oh dear, as if I shouldn’t know!” Laura broke out petulantly.  Might not Yvonne have remembered that, in the days when they were living together in a French appartement, Laura’s experience had been pretty nearly as wide as her own?  “He is not, I tell you! nor I with him.  But, if we were, I shouldn’t desert Bernard.  I do not believe in your two highly trained nurses.  I don’t think you much believe in them yourself.  They might break him in, because nurses are drilled to deal with tiresome and unmanageable patients, but it would be worse for him, not better.  He rebels fiercely enough now, but if I weren’t there he would rebel still more fiercely, and all the rage and humiliation would have no outlet.  You want me to be happy?  We Selincourts are so quick to seize happiness!  Father did it . . . and Lucian does it:  dear Lulu!  We both love him, but it’s difficult to be proud of him.  Yet he has good qualities, good abilities.  He’s far cleverer than I am, and so are you,” Laura’s tone was diffident, “but oh, you are wrong in thinking so much of mere happiness.  There is an immense amount of pain in the world, and if one doesn’t bear one’s own share it falls on some one else.  My life with Bernard isn’t—­always easy,” she found a momentary difficulty in controlling her voice, “but he’s my husband and I shall stick to him.  The more so for being deeply conscious that a different woman might manage him better.  No I don’t mind your saying it.  Oh, how often I’ve felt the truth of it!  But, such as I am, I’m all he has.”

“You’re a thousand times too good for him.  Why are you so good?”

“I’m not good and no more is Lulu.”  Mrs. Bendish sighed, impressed perhaps by Laura’s alien moralities, certainly by her determination.  “However, if you won’t you won’t, and in a way I’m glad, selfishly that is, because of Jack’s people.  But in that case, dear girl, do get rid of Lawrence!  The situation strikes me as fraught with danger.  One of those situations where every one says something’s sure to happen, and then they’re all flabbergasted when it does.”

“Bernard is not a formidable enemy,” said Mrs. Clowes drily.  “But, yes, Lawrence must go.  I’ll speak to him tomorrow.”

“Why not today?”

“It would spoil our evening.”

“Give it up.”

“And disappoint Isabel?”

“I don’t like it.”

“Nor I. But I was forced into it, and I can’t break my word to Lawrence and the child.  After all, there’s no great odds between today and tomorrow.  What can happen in twenty-four hours?”

CHAPTER XIII

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