The Debtor eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 495 pages of information about The Debtor.

Chapter XVI

There had been considerable discussion among the ladies of the Carroll family with regard to the necessary finery for Ina’s bridal.

“It is all very well to talk about Ina’s being married in four weeks,” said Anna Carroll to her sister-in-law, one afternoon directly after the affair had been settled.  “If a girl gets married, she has to have new clothes, of course—­a trousseau.”

“Why, yes, of course!  How could she be married if she didn’t have a trousseau?  I had a very pretty trousseau, and so would you if you had been married, Anna, dear.”

Anna laughed, a trifle bitterly.  “Good Lord,” said she, “if I had to think of a trousseau for myself, I should be a maniac!  The trousseau would at any time have seemed a much more difficult matter than the bridegroom.”

“Yes, I know you have had a great many very good chances,” assented Mrs. Carroll, “and it would have seemed most of the time much easier to have just managed the husband part of it than the new clothes, because one doesn’t have to pay cash or have good credit for a husband, and one does for clothes.”

“Well,” said Anna Carroll, “that is the trouble about Ina.  It was easy enough for her to get the husband.  Major Arms has always had his eye on her ever since she was in short dresses; but what isn’t at all easy is the new clothes.”

“I don’t see why, dear.”

“Well, how is it to be managed, if you will be so good as to inform me, Amy?”

“How?  Why, just go to the dressmaker’s and order them, of course.”

“What dressmaker’s, dear?”

“Well, I think that last New York dressmaker is the best.  She really has imagination like a French dressmaker.  She doesn’t copy; she creates.  She is really quite an artist.”

“Madame Potoffsky, you mean?”

“Yes, dear.  The dressmaker whose husband they say was a descendant of the Polish patriot.  They say she herself is descended from a Russian princess who eloped with the Polish patriot, and I can believe it.  There is something very unusual about her.  She always makes me a little bit nervous, because one does get to associating Russians, especially those that run away with patriots, with bombs and things of that kind, but she is a wonderful dressmaker.  I certainly think it would be wise to patronize her for Ina’s trousseau, Anna.”

Anna laughed, and rather bitterly, again.  “Well, dear, I have my doubts about our ability to patronize her,” she said, “and, granting that we could, you might in reality encounter the bomb as penalty.”

“Anna, dear, what—­”

“Amy, don’t you know that Madame Potoffsky simply will not give us any further credit?”

“Oh, Anna, do you think so?”

“I know.  Amy, only think of the things we owe her for now—­my linen, my pongee, my canvas, your two foulards, Ina’s muslin, Charlotte’s etamine!  It is impossible.”

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The Debtor from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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