"You are sure? You do not care how ashamed I may be afterwards?"
"That is an absurd way of putting it. I do not consider you a competent judge of your own work."
"That may or may not be. But would you care for me—even a little—if I did this to please you?"
"I could not care for you—a little."
"Cynthia! Do you mean that?"
"Yes, I mean it. Women are weak, and after all I am only a woman. Why do you try me so and make me say things—in anger? Do you think I enjoy saying them?"
"But—dearest—I cannot say yes to Dobbs."
"Are you trying an experiment with me to see how long my patience will last! When it fails I think you will be sorry—at least, if you love me as you pretend to do."
"You are using hard words."
"Not too hard. Is it a noble amusement, to torment a woman who loves you?"
"I would die for you—but I cannot say yes to Dobbs."
"I thought only women were obstinate."
"It is not a question of obstinacy, but of right."
"That implies I am urging you to do wrong."
"No—but you do not understand."
"Then I am a fool? I prefer, on the whole, to be a knave. I must decline to squabble like this. It is not only wearying, but vulgar. So far as I am concerned the subject shall drop for ever. Say no to Dobbs, by all means."
"Cynthia, you will see that I am right—some day."
"Possibly. When I do see it I will own I was