Page:A chambermaid's diary.djvu/264

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chemises,— horrible! And this corset! I do not wish to see that in my house. I do not wish you to wear that in my house. Wait, Mary; help me."

She opened a pink lacker wardrobe, pulled out a large drawer full of fragrant garments, and emptied its contents, pell-mell, on the carpet.

"Take that, Mary; take it all. You will see there are some stitches to be taken, some repairs to be made, some little places to be mended. You will attend to that. Take it all; there is a little of everything; there is enough there to fit you out with a pretty wardrobe, a suitable trousseau. Take it all."

Indeed, there was everything,— silk corsets, silk stockings, silk and fine linen chemises, loves of drawers, delicious ruffs, and ornamented petticoats. A strong odor, an odor of peau d'Espagne, of jasmine, of well-groomed woman, in short, an odor of love, rose from these piled-up garments whose soft, faded, or violent colors glistened on the carpet like a basket of flowers in a garden. I could not get over it; I stood thoroughly stupefied, contented and embarrassed at once, before this pile of pink, mauve, yellow, and red stuffs, in which there still were ribbons of brighter shades and delicate bits of lace. And Madame stirred up these old things that were still so pretty, these undergarments that were scarcely worn, showed