Page:Twilight.djvu/209

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201
TWILIGHT

he said courteously. His thoughts were so full of her; how could he speak of anything else?

"I can't do much for her," Peter said gloomily. He had had the greater part of a bottle of champagne, and the port on the top of it. " She doesn't do a thing I tell her. She doesn't care whether I'm dead or alive."

"I am sure you are wrong," Gabriel reassured him earnestly. "She has, I am sure, the highest possible opinion of your skill. She carries out your regime as far as possible. You think she should rest more?"

"She should do nothing but rest."

"But with an active mind?"

"It is not only her mind that is active."

"You mean the piano-playing, writing…"

"She ought just to vegetate. She has a weak heart, one of the valves…"

Gabriel rose hurriedly, it was not possible for him to listen to a description of his beloved's physical ailments. He was shocked with Peter for wishing to tell him, genuinely shocked. It was a breach of professional etiquette, of good manners. They arrived upstairs in the music room completely out of tune.

"He wouldn't even listen when I told him how seedy you were, that you ought to be kept quiet. Selfish owl. You've been out with him all day."

"I rested for half an hour before dinner. Do I