“I will get them.”
And as Miss Percival prepared to go for the two little bags, Jean said to her:
“Pray allow me.”
“I am really very sorry to give you so much trouble. The servant will give them to you; they are on the front seat.”
She had the same accent as her sister, the same large eyes—black, laughing, and gay-and the same hair, not red, but fair, with golden shades, where daintily danced the light of the sun. She bowed to Jean with a pretty little smile, and he, having returned to Pauline the salad dish full of endive, went to look for the two little bags. Meanwhile-much agitated, sorely disturbed—the Abbe Constantin introduced into his vicarage the new Chatelaine of Longueval.
This vicarage of Longueval was far from being a palace. The same apartment on the ground floor served for dining and drawing-room, communicating directly with the kitchen by a door, which stood always wide open. This room was furnished in the most scanty manner; two old arm chairs, six straw chairs, a sideboard, a round table. Pauline had already laid the cloth for the dinner of the Abbe and Jean.
Mrs. Scott and Miss Percival went and came, examining the domestic arrangements of the Cure with a sort of childish wonder.
“But the garden, the house, everything is charming,” said Mrs. Scott.
They both boldly penetrated into the kitchen; the Abbe Constantin followed them, scared, bewildered, stupefied at the suddenness and resolution of this American invasion.
Old Pauline, with an anxious and gloomy air, examined the two foreigners.
“There they are, then,” she said to herself, “these Protestants, these accursed heretics!”
“I must compliment you,” said Bettina; “it is so beautifully kept. Look, Susie, is not the vicarage altogether exactly what you wished?”
“And so is the Cure,” rejoined Mrs. Scott. “Yes, Monsieur le Cure, if you will permit me to say so, you do not know how happy it makes me to find you just what you are. In the railway carriage what did I say to you, Bettina? And again just now, when we were driving here?”
“My sister said to me, Monsieur le Cure, that what she desired above everything was a priest, not young, or melancholy, or severe; but one with white hair and a kind and gentle manner. And that is exactly what you are, Monsieur le Cure, exactly. No, we could not have been more fortunate. Excuse me for speaking to you in this manner; the Parisians know how to make pretty phrases, but I do not, and in speaking French I should often be quite at a loss if I did not say everything in a simple and childish way, as it comes into my head. In a word, I am satisfied, quite satisfied, and I hope that you, too, Monsieur le Cure, will be as satisfied with your new parishioners.”