Page:The Intrusion of Jimmy.djvu/174

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Mullins for, unless they are standing in together at some game? That's who Mr. Pitt is, my dear, and that's why maybe I seemed a little put out when I came upon you and him out here alone together. See as little of him as you can. In a large party like this, it won't be difficult to avoid him."

Molly sat staring out across the garden. At first, every word had been a stab. Several times, she had been on the point of crying out that she could bear it no longer. But, gradually, a numbness succeeded the pain. She found herself listening apathetically.

McEachern talked on. He left the subject of Jimmy, comfortably conscious that, even if there had ever existed in Molly's heart any budding feeling of the kind he had suspected, it must now be dead. He steered the conversation away until it ran easily among commonplaces. He talked of New York, of the preparations for the theatricals. Molly answered composedly. She was still pale, and a certain listlessness in her manner might have been noticed by a more observant man than Mr. McEachern. Beyond this, there was nothing to show that her heart had been born and killed but a few minutes before. Women have the Red Indian instinct; and Molly had grown to womanhood in those few minutes.

Presently, Lord Dreever's name came up. It caused a momentary pause, and McEachern took advantage of it. It was the cue for which he had been waiting. He hesitated for a moment, for the