The whole coterie felt a glad thrill. “Ah, madame,” Beloiseau exclaimed, “you are co’rec’! But, any’ow, in a caze where the two faith’ are con-tra-ry ‘tis not for you Protestant’ to be diztres’ ab-out! You, you don’ care so much ab-out those myzterie’ of bil-ief as about those rule’ of conduc’. Almoze, I may say, you run those rule’ of conduc’ into the groun’—and tha’z right! And bis-ide’, you ‘ave in everything—politic’, law, trade, society—so much the upper han’—in the bes’ senze—ah, of co’se in the bes’ senze!—that the chil’ren of such a case they are pretty sure goin’ to be Protestant!”
Mrs. Chester, having her choice, to say either that marriages across differences of faith had peculiar risks, or that Geoffry’s uncle, the “Angel of the Lord,” had married, happily, a Catholic, chose neither, let the subject be changed, and was able to assure the company that the missive on Geoffry’s desk was no bulky manuscript, but a neat thin letter under one two-cent stamp.
“Accept’!” they cried, “that beautiful true story of ’The ‘Oly Crozz’ is accept’! Mesdemoiselles they have strug the oil!”
Mme. Castanado had a further conviction:
“‘Tis the name of it done that! They coul’n’ rif-use that name!—and even notwithstanding that those publisher’ they are maybe Protestant!”
The good nights were very happy. The last were said five squares away, at the hotel, to which the De l’Isles brought her back afoot. “And to-morrow evening, four o’clock,” madame said, “I’ll come and we’ll go make li’l’ visite at those Chapdelaine’.”
Mrs. Chester had but just removed her hat when again the telephone; from the hotel office—“Your son is here. Yes, shall we send him up?”
With hands under their gray sleeves two white-bonneted religieuses turned into Bourbon Street and rang the Chapdelaines’ street bell.
Mlle. Yvonne flutteringly let them into the garden, Mlle. Corinne into the house. The conversation was in English, for, though Sister Constance was French, Sister St. Anne, young, fair, and the chief speaker, was Irish. They came from Sister Superior Veronique, they said, to see further about mesdemoiselles entering, eh——
Smilingly mesdemoiselles fluttered more than ever. “Ah, yes, yes! Well, you know, sinze we talk ab-out that with the archbishop we’ve talk’ ab-out it with our niece al-so, and we think she’s got to get marrie’ befo’ we can do that, biccause to live al-lone that way she’s too young. But we ’ave the ‘ope she’s goin’ to marry, and then——!”
“Have you made a will?”
“Will! Ah, we di’n’ never think of that! Tha’z a marvellouz we di’n’ never think of that—when we are the two-third’ owner’ of that lovely proprity there! And we think tha’z always improving in cozt, that place, biccause so antique an’ so pittoresque. And if Aline she marrie’ and we, we join that asylum doubtlezz Aline she’ll be rij-oice’ to combine with us to leave that lovely proprity ad the lazt to the church! Biccause, you know, to take that to heaven with us, tha’z impossible, and the church tha’z the nearez’ we can come.” Odd as the moment seemed for them, tears rolled down their smiling faces.