Page:A chambermaid's diary.djvu/304

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"Mine?"

I contracted my two hands into the shape of talons, and, pretending to claw a face ferociously, I answered:

" My nails, in their eyes! "

The butler, without being asked, remarked quietly, while arranging flowers and fruits in a glass dish with his fastidious fingers:

" I would be satisfied to sprinkle their faces in church with a bottle of good vitriol."

And he stuck a rose between two pears.

Oh ! yes, how we love them ! The extraordinary thing is that these revenges are not taken more frequently. "When I think that a cook, for in- stance, holds her masters' lives in her hands every day; a pinch of arsenic instead of salt, a little dash of strychnine instead of vinegar, and the thing is done. Well, no, it must be that we have servitude in our very blood !

I have no education, and I write what I think and what I have seen. Well, I say that all this is not beautiful. I say that from the moment when any one installs another under his roof, though he were the last of poor devils, or the lowest of dis- reputable girls, he owes them protection, he owes them happiness. I say also that, if the master does not give it to us, we have a right to take it, even from his strong-box, even from his blood.

But enough of this ! I do wrong to think of