it is better than your tearful tales, which make folk believe that they are very kind when they are not kind at all, that they do good when they do nothing of the sort, that it is easy for them to be benevolent when it is the most difficult thing in the world. My story is moral. Moreover it is optimistic and ends well. For, in her shop in the Rue de la Gaîté, Edmeé found the happiness which in amusements and festivities she would have sought in vain, had she been married to a diplomat or an officer.… My dear editor, are we agreed: Will you have Edmée, or Charity well Bestowed for the Nouveau Siècle Illustré?"
"You ask me that in all seriousness? …"
"In all seriousness I ask you. If you will not have my story, I will publish it elsewhere."
"In some high class journal."
"I dare you to do so."
"You will see."
The Figaro, under the editorship of Monsieur de Rodays, published Edmée ou La Charité bien placée. It was, so to speak, offered as a New Year's gift to the readers of that paper.