"I'm sure," she said stiffly, "we paid you back every cent we borrowed. If

you stayed here after George died, it was because you offered to."

Her chin worked. She fumbled for the handkerchief at her belt. But Sidney

went around the table and flung a young arm over her aunt's shoulders.

"Why didn't you say all that a year ago? We've been selfish, but we're not

as bad as you think. And if any one in this world is entitled to success

you are. Of course we'll manage."

Harriet's iron repression almost gave way. She covered her emotion with

details:-"Mrs. Lorenz is going to let me make Christine some things, and if they're

all right I may make her trousseau."


"Trousseau--for Christine!"

"She's not engaged, but her mother says it's only a matter of a short time.

I'm going to take two rooms in the business part of town, and put a couch

in the backroom to sleep on."

Sidney's mind flew to Christine and her bright future, to a trousseau

bought with the Lorenz money, to Christine settled down, a married woman,

with Palmer Howe. She came back with an effort. Harriet had two

triangular red spots in her sallow cheeks.

"I can get a few good models--that's the only way to start. And if you

care to do hand work for me, Anna, I'll send it to you, and pay you the

regular rates. There isn't the call for it there used to be, but just a

touch gives dash."

All of Mrs. Page's grievances had worked their way to the surface. Sidney

and Harriet had made her world, such as it was, and her world was in

revolt. She flung out her hands.

"I suppose I must do something. With you leaving, and Sidney renting her

room and sleeping on a folding-bed in the sewing-room, everything seems

upside down. I never thought I should live to see strange men running in

and out of this house and carrying latch-keys."

This in reference to Le Moyne, whose tall figure had made a hurried exit

some time before.

Nothing could have symbolized Harriet's revolt more thoroughly than her

going upstairs after a hurried breakfast, and putting on her hat and coat.

She had heard of rooms, she said, and there was nothing urgent in the

work-room. Her eyes were brighter already as she went out. Sidney,

kissing her in the hall and wishing her luck, realized suddenly what a

burden she and her mother must have been for the last few years. She threw

her head up proudly. They would never be a burden again--never, as long as

she had strength and health!

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