“Woman,” said Octave, “resembles a pendulum, whose movement is a continual reaction; when it moves to the right, it has to go to the left in order to return to the right again, and so on. Suppose virtue is on one side and love on the other, and the feminine balance between them, the odds are that, having moved to the right in a violent manner, it will return none the less energetically to the left; for the longer a vibration has been, the greater play the contrary vibration has. In order to hasten the action of this pendulum I am about to attach to it—to act as extra balance-weight—a little anguish which I ought to have employed sooner.”
“Why make her suffer, since you believe that she loves you?”
“Why? Because she drives me to it. Do you fancy that I torture her willingly; that I take pleasure in seeing her cheeks grow pale from insomnia and her eyes show traces of tears? I love her, I tell you; I suffer and weep with her. But I love her, and I must make sure of her love. If she will leave but a road full of brambles and sharp stones for me to reach her, must I give up the struggle just because I run the risk by taking her with me, of wounding her charming feet? I will cure them with my kisses!”
“Listen to me! I am not in love; I am an artist. If I have some peculiar ideas, it is not my fault. And you, in your character of docile lover, have you decided to yield?”
“Very well! after all, you are right. The science of love resembles those old signs upon which one reads: ’Here, hair is dressed according to one’s fancy.’ If this angel wishes her hair pulled, do it for her.”
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I believed it all; one
is so happy to believe!
It is a terrible step for a woman to take, from No to Yes
Lady who requires urging, although she is dying to sing
Let them laugh that win!
Let ultra-modesty destroy poetry
Misfortunes never come single
No woman is unattainable, except when she loves another
These are things that one admits only to himself
Topics that occupy people who meet for the first time
You are playing ‘who loses wins!’
By CHARLES DE BERNARD
MONSIEUR DE BERGENHEIM
Some men in society marry too soon, a great number too late, a small and fortunate proportion at an opportune time. Young men in the country, of good family, are usually established in marriage by their parents as early as possible. When the family council finds an heiress who answers all the conditions of the programme laid out, they begin by giving the victim his cue. Provided the young lady has not a positively crooked nose, arms too red, and too uncouth a waist—sometimes even notwithstanding these little misfortunes—the transaction is concluded without any difficulty.