The Halo eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 291 pages of information about The Halo.

La! Now eat, Colibris, and tell me more.  How is Louis?  And Henriette?”

“All well, all well,” returned her brother-in-law, who was apparently full of the quality, the name of which is so often abused by English people, joie-de-vivre.  “Henriette has new upper teeth, and looks ten years younger.  Louis is as usual very silent, but otherwise is well.  I am curious to see Victor.  It was a misfortune, my being away when he was here last.  He must have been greatly disappointed.  He has always been very fond of me, you will remember.  Even as boys, we had much in common.”

Madame Chalumeau’s eyes twinkled as she nodded.  Colibris’ harmless vanity always amused her.

“Yes, yes, I know.  He inquired very particularly for you.  A great man, Victor.”

“Yes, yes.  I remember once when we were boys a man came who felt the skull and read the character.  He said to Victor, ’You have great talent, my little one,’ and to me he said, ’You are going to be a very great man, Colibris.’  But I did not care to develop my talents.  I was always very modest and domestic.  The cure at home always says, ’Now, Jacques Colibris—­there’s a man who is a model husband and father.’” He drank a deep draught of cider.

“They arrive to-morrow,” interpolated Madame Chalumeau hastily, with a hunted expression, “Victor and Felicite and Theodore.  Also Theo’s fiancee, an English girl.  I have a letter from Victor—­I will read it to you.”

Taking the letter from her pocket, and ruthlessly interrupting his remarks on the English as viewed by himself, she began to read: 

“My dear Sister—­On Tuesday we shall arrive, I, my wife, our boy, and his fiancee, Lady Brigit Mead.  She is a very beautiful and charming young lady, and I am sure you will all admire her.  Felicite, who is very wise, fears that she, Lady Brigit, may not care for Falaise, for she is, my dear sister, the daughter of a Count.  But I, who am even wiser, know that she will.  Dear Falaise, to me always the most beautiful town in the world, who could help loving thee?  Now, my good Bathilde, I wish you to go to Berton of the Chevreuil d’Or and engage rooms for Lady Brigit.  Two rooms, one without a bed, for a salon.  Tell him they must be very nice, and you, I know, will see that they are clean.  We, of course, will lodge in the Rue Victor Hugo with the old people.  My affectionate salutations to you all, my dear sister, from your devoted brother,

“He is a charming personality, isn’t he, Colibris?” asked Madame Chalumeau, folding the letter and beaming with satisfaction.  “I am curious to see this lady.  The daughter of a Count, fichtre!  And very beautiful.  That must please Victor; he has an eye for beauty.”

“Yes, yes,” returned Jacques Colibris absently, filling his glass with cider, “it is an excellent thing.  I, too, have it, the eye for beauty.  Only the other day, looking at the new blue wash I have put on the walls, old Madame Thibaut was saying——­”

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The Halo from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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