Page:A chambermaid's diary.djvu/390

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which, a few days after my refusal to go into the service of the old gentleman in the country, I was sent, with all sorts of admirable references, by Mme. Paulhat-Durand. My masters were a very young couple, without animals or children, living in an ill-kept interior, though the furniture was stylish and there was a heavy elegance about the decorations. Luxury and great waste ! A single glance as I entered showed me all; I saw clearly with whom I had to deal. It was my dream! Now then, I was going to forget all my miseries, — M. Xavier, and the good sisters of Neuilly, and the killing sessions in the ante-room of the employment-bureau, and the long days of anguish, and the long nights of solitude and debauchery. Now then, I was going to plan for myself an agreeable life, with easy work and certain profits. Made happy by this prospect, I promised myself that I would correct my caprices, repress the ardent impulses of my frankness, in order to stay in this place a long, long time. In a twinkling my gloomy ideas vanished; and my hatred of the bourgeois flew away, as if by enchantment. I again became madly and hilariously gay, and, seized anew with a violent love of life, I began to think that the mas- ters are sometimes good. The personnel was not numerous, but it was select, — a cook, a valet de chambre, an old butler, and myself. There was no coachman, the masters having abolished their