Page:Twilight.djvu/73

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65
TWILIGHT

noon for sleep, whether they had been disturbed in the night or not; in the intervals there were the meals over which they lingered. Solitude would be easily secured if Ella went away and there was no one to watch or comment on the amount of attention purchased or purchasable for two guineas a week. I misread Benham, by the way, but that is a detail. She was not like the average nurse, and never behaved in the same way.

My first objective, once that brown paper parcel lay on the bed, was to persuade Ella to go back to home and children. Without hurting her feelings. She would not have left the house for five minutes before I should be longing for her back again. I knew that, but one cannot work and play. I have never had any other companion but Ella. Still... Work whilst ye have the light. One more book I must do, and here was one to my hand.

I made Dr. Kennedy put the parcel back in the drawer. Then I lay and made plans. I must talk to Ella of Violet and Tommy, make her homesick for them. Unfortunately Ella knew me so well. I started that very afternoon.

"How does Violet get on without you?"

"She is all right."

But soon afterwards Ella asked me quietly whether there was any one else I would like down.

"God forbid!" I answered in alarm, and she understood, understood without showing pang or