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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 599 pages of information about The Real Adventure.

“You’ve got enough, haven’t you, of your own ...  I mean, there’s enough that comes in every year, to live on, if you didn’t earn a cent by practising law?  Well, what I want to do, is to live on that.  I want to live however and wherever we have to to live on that—­out in the suburbs somewhere, or in a flat, so that you will be free; and I can work—­be some sort of help.  Barry and the others—­your real friends, that you really care about, won’t mind.  And as long as we want to get rid of the other people anyway, that’s the way to do it.”

“You can wash the dishes and scrub the floors,” he supplemented, “and I can carry my lunch to the office with me in a little tin box.”  He looked at his watch.  “And now that the thing’s reduced to an absurdity, let’s go to bed.  It’s getting along toward two o’clock.”

“You don’t have to get to the office till nine to-morrow morning,” said Rose.  “And I want to talk it out now.  And I don’t think I said anything that was absurd.”

The devil of it was she hadn’t.  The precise quality about her suggestions that pointed and barbed them, was their fantastic logic.  It would be ridiculous—­impossible—­to uproot their life as she wanted it done.  One simply couldn’t do such a thing.  Serious discussion of it was preposterous.  But to explain why ...!  He was apt enough at explanations generally.  This one seemed to present difficulties.

“I shouldn’t have called it absurd,” he admitted after a rather long silence.  “But it’s exaggerated and unnecessary.  I don’t care to make a public proclamation that I’m not able to support you and run our domestic establishment in a way that we find natural and agreeable;—­and that I’ve been a fool to try.  The situation doesn’t call for it.  You’ve made a mountain out of an ant-hill.  When our lease is up, if we think this house is more than we want, we can find something simpler.”

“But we’ll begin economizing now,” she pleaded; “change things as much as we can, even if we do have to go on living in this house.  It won’t hurt me a bit to work, and you could go back to your book.  We’d both be happier, if I were something besides just a drag on you.”

“Discharge a couple of maids, you mean,” he asked, “and sweep and make beds and that sort of thing yourself?”

“I don’t know exactly how we’d do it,” she said.  “That’s why I said I needed your help in figuring it out.  Something like that, I suppose.  Sweeping and making beds isn’t very much, but it’s something.”

“The most we could save that way,” he said, “would be a few hundred dollars a year.  It wouldn’t be a drop in the bucket.  But everything would run at cross-purposes.  You’d be tired out all the time—­you’re that pretty much as it is lately, we’d have to stop having people in; you’d be bored and I’d be worried.  When you start living on a certain scale, everything about your life has to be done on that scale.  Next October, as I said, when the lease on this house runs out, we can manage, perhaps, to change the scale a little.  There you are!  Now do stop worrying about it and let’s go to bed.”

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