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Marie Gourdon eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 70 pages of information about Marie Gourdon.

  “Il y a longtemps que je t’aime,
     Jamais je ne t’oublierai.”

And he was saying to her: 

“Marie, you know, my dear one—­

  ‘Il y a longtemps que je t’aime.’

Yes, for years.  My love for you is deep as that great river, and stronger, mightier.”  And the girl had answered, looking at him with her great brown eyes full of unutterable tenderness and faith: 

“Yes, Noel, I believe you will never change;” and their voices joined in the refrain of that old boat-song, awaking the echoes: 

  “Il y a longtemps que je t’aime,
     Jamais je ne t’oublierai.”

“Mr. McAllister, how ill you look,” said Elsie Severn, coming towards him, and noticing his weary, abstracted expression.

“Yes, that’s just what I was saying,” put in the irrepressible Jack.  “I think he’d better go home.”

“How rude you are!” said his sister.  “Come, Mr. McAllister, come into the house, and I will give you a cup of tea.  That will do you good, and then I will introduce you to Mademoiselle Laurentia.”

“Oh!  Miss Elsie, there’s nothing the matter with me.  I should like to be introduced to Mademoiselle Laurentia now.”

“Very well.  See, she is coming this way,” said Elsie.  “Is she not pretty?  Have you ever seen her before?”

“Seen her before?  How could I have seen her before?”

He told the untruth unblushingly; it was by no means his first.

Mademoiselle Laurentia was close to them now, and Elsie said, in her clear, distinct tones: 

“Let me introduce Mr. McAllister to you, mademoiselle.  You are compatriots.”

Just then Lady Severn called Elsie, and Marie Gourdon and Noel McAllister were left alone for a moment.  She was the first to break the awkward silence, as she said in her quiet voice, without the faintest shade of embarrassment in it: 

“How do you like this country, Mr. McAllister?”

“How do I like this country?  Is that all you have to say to me after these years?”

“What else can I have to say to you?  Is not this a fine old garden?  How brightly the moon shines!”

“Marie Gourdon, do not speak to me in that calm, aggravating way.  Reproach me!  Anything but this.  I cannot bear your indifference.”

“Reproach you?  For what?  Do you mean for leaving me?  If so, that is an old story, told long, long ago.  I am thankful now you did leave me.  And, Mr. McAllister, I must remind you that only to my most intimate friends am I known as Marie Gourdon.  I must beg you to excuse me now; Lady Severn is calling me.”

CHAPTER X.

  “O! primavera gioventu dell’ anno! 
   O! gioventu primavera della vitae!!!”

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