Ragged Lady, the — Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 97 pages of information about Ragged Lady, the Complete.
would be wasted.  She decided against piano lessons and singing lessons, too; she did not care for either, and she pleaded that it would be a waste to study them; but she suggested dancing lessons, and her gift for dancing won greater praise, and perhaps sincerer, than her accent won from Mademoiselle Blanc, though Mrs. Lander said that she would not have believed any one could be more complimentary.  She learned the new steps and figures in all the fashionable dances; she mastered some fancy dances, which society was then beginning to borrow from the stage; and she gave these before Mrs. Lander with a success which she felt herself.

“I believe I could teach dancing,” she said.

“Well, you won’t eve haf to, child,” returned Mrs. Lander, with an eye on the side of the case that seldom escaped her.

In spite of his wish to respect these preoccupations, Fane could not keep from offering Clementina attentions, which took the form of persecution when they changed from flowers for Mrs. Lander’s table to letters for herself.  He apologized for his letters whenever he met her; but at last one of them came to her before breakfast with a special delivery stamp from Boston.  He had withdrawn to the city to write it, and he said that if she could not make him a favorable answer, he should not come back to Woodlake.

She had to show this letter to Mrs. Lander, who asked:  “You want he should come back?”

“No, indeed!  I don’t want eva to see him again.”

“Well, then, I guess you’ll know how to tell him so.”

The girl went into her own room to write, and when she brought her answer to show it to Mrs. Lander she found her in frowning thought.  “I don’t know but you’ll have to go back and write it all over again, Clementina,” she said, “if you’ve told him not to come.  I’ve been thinkin’, if you don’t want to have anything to do with him, we betta go ouaselves.”

“Yes,” answered Clementina, “that’s what I’ve said.”

“You have?  Well, the witch is in it!  How came you to”—­

“I just wanted to talk with you about it.  But I thought maybe you’d like to go.  Or at least I should.  I should like to go home, Mrs. Landa.”

“Home!” retorted Mrs. Lander.  “The’e’s plenty of places where you can be safe from the fella besides home, though I’ll take you back the’a this minute if you say so.  But you needn’t to feel wo’ked up about it.”

“Oh, I’m not,” said Clementina, but with a gulp which betrayed her nervousness.

“I did think,” Mrs. Lander went on, “that I should go into the Vonndome, for December and January, but just as likely as not he’d come pesterin’ the’a, too, and I wouldn’t go, now, if you was to give me the whole city of Boston.  Why shouldn’t we go to Florid?”

When Mrs. Lander had once imagined the move, the nomadic impulse mounted irresistably in her.  She spoke of hotels in the South, where they could renew the summer, and she mapped out a campaign which she put into instant action so far as to advance upon New York.

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Ragged Lady, the — Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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