Page:Twilight.djvu/352

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344
TWILIGHT

he said "Yes," she took his hand in hers a moment, his reluctant hand, and laid her cheek against it.

"Dear friend," she said tenderly, "you give me courage."

When he went away she looked happier, or at least quieter. He cursed himself for a fool when he got into the car. But still against his hand he felt the softness of her cheek and the fear of unmanly tears made him exceed the speed limit.

Margaret, left alone, calculated her resources and for all her whilom amazing vanity found them poor and wanting. What would Gabriel say to her this morning, how could she answer him? If he truly loved her and she pointed out to him, proved to him that their marriage, their happiness, need not be postponed, would he listen? She saw herself persuading him, but remembered that her father in many an argument had failed in making him admit that there was more than one standard of ethics, of right conduct. If he truly loved her! In this black moment she could doubt it. For unlike Peter Kennedy he would put honour before her love.

Gabriel, her lover, came late, on slow reluctant feet. He loved her no less, although he knew she had deceived him, kept things back from him, complicated, perhaps, both their lives by her action. He knew her motives also, that it was because she