Page:A chambermaid's diary.djvu/203

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197
A CHAMBERMAID'S DIARY.

minutes, I listened at the door of the salon. I heard Monsieur crumpling a newspaper. Madame, seated at her little desk, was casting up her accounts.

"What did I give you yesterday?" Madame asked.

"Two francs," answered Monsieur.

"You are sure?"

"Why, yes, my pet."

"Well, I am short thirty-eight sous."

"It was not I who took them."

"No, it was the cat."

Of the other matter they said not a word.

In the kitchen Joseph does not like to have us talk about the little Claire. When Marianne or I broach the subject, he immediately changes it, or else takes no part in the conversation. It annoys him. I do not know why, but the idea has come to me—and it is burying itself deeper and deeper in my mind—that it was Joseph who did it. I have no proofs, no clues to warrant my suspicion,—no other clues than his eyes, no other proofs than the slight movement of surprise that escaped him when, on my return from the grocer's, I suddenly, in the harness-room, threw in his face for the first time the name of the little Claire murdered and outraged. And yet this purely intuitive suspicion has grown, first into a possibility, and then into a certainty. Undoubtedly I am mistaken. I try to