I went every morning at nine o'clock to open M. Xavier's curtains and carry him his tea. It is queer; I always entered his room with my heart beating and a strong feeling of apprehension. It was a long time before he paid any attention to me. I turned this way and that, prepared his things for him, arranged his garments, trying to look pretty and show myself off to advantage. He spoke to me only to complain, in the growling voice of one who is half awake, of being disturbed too early. I was put out by this indifference, and I redoubled the silent tricks of coquetry which I had carefully planned. I was expecting every day something that did not happen; and this silence on the part of M. Xavier, this disdain for my person, irritated me to the last degree. What should I have done, if that which I expected had happened? I did not ask myself. I simply wanted it to happen.
M. Xavier was really a very pretty boy, even prettier than his photograph. A light blonde moustache —two little arcs of gold— set off his lips better than in his portrait, their red and fleshy pulp inviting a kiss. His light blue eyes, dusted with yellow, were strangely fascinating, and his movements were characterized by the indolence, theweary and cruel grace, of a girl or young deer. He was tall, slender, very supple, ultra-modern in his elegance, and wonderfully