A Daughter of To-Day eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 245 pages of information about A Daughter of To-Day.

“Doesn’t it distress you to think that she believes you incapable of speaking of her like this?”

“I think,” said Kendal slowly, “that she knows how I would be likely to speak of her.”

“Well,” Janet returned, “I’m glad you haven’t reason to suffer about her as I do.  And I don’t know at all how to answer her letter.”

“I’ll tell you,” Kendal replied.  He jumped up and brought her a pen and a sheet of paper and a blotting pad, and sat down again beside her, holding the ink bottle.  “Write ‘My dear Miss Bell.’”

“But she began her letter, without any formality.”

“Never mind; that’s a cheapness that you needn’t imitate, even for the sake of politeness.  Write ‘My dear Miss Bell.’”

Janet wrote it.

“‘I am sorry to find,’” Kendal dictated slowly, a few words at a time, “’that the flaws in my regard for you are sufficiently considerable—­to attract your attention as strongly as your letter indicates.  The right of judgment in so personal a matter—­is indisputably yours, however—­and I write to acknowledge, not to question it.’”

“Dear, that isn’t as I feel.”

“It’s as you will feel,” Kendal replied ruthlessly.  “Now add:  ’I have to acknowledge the very candid expression of your opinion of myself—­which does not lose in interest—­by the somewhat exaggerated idea of its value which appears to have dictated it,—­and to thank you, for your extremely kind offer to send me a picture.  I am afraid, however—­even in view of the idyllic considerations you mention—­I cannot allow myself to take advantage of that—­”

“On the whole I wouldn’t allude to the shattered ideal—­”

“Oh-no, dear.  Go on.”

“Or the fact that you probably wouldn’t be able to hang it up,” he added grimly.  “Now write ’You may be glad to know that the episode in my life—­which your letter terminates—­appears to me to be of less importance than you perhaps imagine it—­notwithstanding a certain soreness over its close.’”

“It doesn’t, Jack.”

“It will.  I wouldn’t say anything more, if I were you; just ‘yours very truly, Janet Cardiff.’”

She wrote as he dictated, and then read the letter slowly over from the beginning.  “It sounds very hard, dear,” she said, lifting eyes to his which he saw were full of tears, “and as if I didn’t care.”

“My darling,” he said, taking her into his arms, “I hope you don’t—­I hope you won’t care, after to-morrow.  And now, don’t you think we’ve had enough of Miss Elfrida Bell for the present?”

CHAPTER XXXV.

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A Daughter of To-Day from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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