She had cause to be extremely happy, she told herself this morning, and yet she was puzzled to understand why she was not. Why was she restless and vaguely ill at ease so often these days?
One matter, indeed, did worry her; but that would right itself in time, she was sure. She had always pictured herself as directing her husband’s work. She did not plan to step in and demand a share; she knew from experience with her brother that a woman must prove her usefulness to a man before he will admit it, and even then he may be silent. She intended gradually and tactfully to relieve her husband of care connected with his public life so that, before he realized it, she would be his guiding spirit and his inspiration. She had dreamed the details of doing this so long that it seemed already done, and she could imagine no obstacle to its realization. And yet she found herself today no nearer her goal than when first she married. Not because Mr. Cresswell did not share his work, but because, apparently, he had no work, no duties, no cares. At first, in the dim glories of the honeymoon, this seemed but part of his delicate courtesy toward her, and it pleased her despite her thrifty New England nature; but now that they were settled in Washington, the election over and Congress in session, it really seemed time for Work and Life to begin in dead earnest, and New England Mary was dreaming mighty dreams and golden futures.
But Harry apparently was as content as ever with doing nothing. He arose at ten, dined at seven, and went to bed between midnight and sunrise. There was some committee meetings and much mail, but Mary was admitted to knowledge of none of these. The obvious step, of course, would be to set him at work; but from this undertaking Mary unconsciously recoiled. She had already recognized that while her tastes and her husband’s were mostly alike, they were also strikingly different in many respects. They agreed in the daintiness of things, the elegance of detail; but they did not agree always as to the things themselves. Given the picture, they would choose the same frame—but they would not choose the same picture. They liked the same voice, but not the same song; the same company, but not the same conversation. Of course, Mary reflected, frowning at the flowers—of course, this must always be so when two human beings are thrown into new and intimate association. In time they would grow to sweet communion; only, she hoped the communion would be on tastes nearer hers than those he sometimes manifested.
She turned impatiently from the window with a feeling of loneliness. But why lonely? She idly fingered a new book on the table and then put it down sharply. There had been several attempts at reading aloud between them some evenings ago, and this book reminded her of them. She had bought Jane Addams’ “Newer Ideals of Peace,” and he had yawned over it undisguisedly. Then he had brought this novel, and—well, she had balked at the