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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 168 pages of information about Ragged Lady Volume 2.

“Oh, I presume we’re all fools!” said Mrs. Claxon, impatient of a sex not always so frank with itself.  “But that don’t excuse him.”

“I don’t say it doos,” her husband admitted.  “But I presume he was expectin’ to get well right away, then.  And I don’t believe,” he added, energetically, “but what he will, yet.  As I undastand, there ain’t anything ogganic about him.  It’s just this he’e nuvvous prostration, resultin’ from shock, his docta tells me; and he’ll wo’k out of that all right.”

They said no more, and Mrs. Claxon did not recur to any phase of the situation till she undid the lunch which the Hinkles had put up for them, and laid out on the napkin in her lap the portions of cold ham and cold chicken, the buttered biscuit, and the little pot of apple-butter, with the large bottle of cold coffee.  Then she sighed, “They live well.”

“Yes,” said her husband, glad of any concession, “and they ah’ good folks.  And Clem’s as happy as a bud with ’em, you can see that.”

“Oh, she was always happy enough, if that’s all you want.  I presume she was happy with that hectorin’ old thing that fooled her out of her money.”

“I ha’n’t ever regretted that money, Rebecca,” said Claxon, stiffly, almost sternly, “and I guess you a’n’t, eitha.”

“I don’t say I have,” retorted Mrs. Claxon.  “But I don’t like to be made a fool of.  I presume,” she added, remotely, but not so irrelevantly, “Clem could ha’ got ’most anybody, ova the’a.”

“Well,” said Claxon, taking refuge in the joke, “I shouldn’t want her to marry a crowned head, myself.”

It was Clementina who drove the clay-bank colt away from the station after the train had passed out of sight.  Her husband sat beside her, and let her take the reins from his nerveless grasp; and when they got into the shelter of the piece of woods that the road passed through he put up his hands to his face, and broke into sobs.  She allowed him to weep on, though she kept saying, “Geo’ge, Geo’ge,” softly, and stroking his knee with the hand next him.  When his sobbing stopped, she said, “I guess they’ve had a pleasant visit; but I’m glad we’a together again.”  He took up her hand and kissed the back of it, and then clutched it hard, but did not speak.  “It’s strange,” she went on, “how I used to be home-sick for father and motha”—­she had sometimes lost her Yankee accent in her association with his people, and spoke with their Western burr, but she found it in moments of deeper feeling—­“when I was there in Europe, and now I’m glad to have them go.  I don’t want anybody to be between us; and I want to go back to just the way we we’e befo’e they came.  It’s been a strain on you, and now you must throw it all off and rest, and get up your strength.  One thing, I could see that fatha noticed the gain you had made since he saw you in New Yo’k.  He spoke about it to me the fust thing, and he feels just the way I do about it.  He don’t want you to hurry

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