Page:Twilight.djvu/108

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100
TWILIGHT

being in the witness box 'ad knocked at least ten pounds off my value, an' he ground me down. But I'll have to ask you to take up my character from him. That's the worst of it, Ma'am, milady."

We had to break it to him that we were without titles, but he said sorrowfully that having been in a witness box in the divorce court made it impossible for him to stand out.

Burden and I have always been on good terms. I understand him, you see, his point of view, and his descent in the social scale when he went to live with Jews. What I was going to tell you was, that notwithstanding our friendship he resented my interference in his department when I insisted on selecting the wine for your—our—dinner party. I am almost sorry I quarrelled with him on your account. He looks at me coldly now, he is remembering my American blood, despising it. And to think I have lost the priceless regard of Burden for a man who can eat boiled and tired cod, masked with egg sauce, washed down with ginger beer!

Where was I? The sculpture at the British Museum; then the next day at the National Gallery. Our spirits kneeled there; we grew small. No, we didn't, I'm disingenuous. We said so, not meaning it in the least. After twenty minutes we forgot all about the pictures. Rumpelmayer's, St. James's Park, out to Coombe.

Did you realise we were seeing each other every day, how much time we spent together?

Am I eighteen or twenty-eight? You've a reputation for knowing more about Greek roots than any other Englishman. Should I have run away down here if you had talked about Greek roots? I'm