“No; not proud. You misjudge me; but it is true that I dread, almost more than anything else, being deemed intrusive.”

“If that fear has prevented you from putting the question to which you have so long desired an answer, pray ask it forthwith.”

“I think it has almost answered itself,” said Diamond, bending over her, and turning his chair so as to cut her and himself off still more from the others. “I was going to ask you if I had unwittingly offended you in any way, or if my frequent 杭州按摩保健全套会所 presence here were, for any reason, irksome to you? It might well be so. And if you would say so candidly, believe me, I should feel not the smallest resentment. Sorrow I should feel. I can’t deny it; but I should not cease to regard you as I have always regarded you from the beginning of our acquaintance. How highly that is, I have not the gift to tell; nor do you love the direct, broadly-spoken praise that sounds like flattery, be it ever so sincere.”

“No; please don’t praise me,” said Minnie, huskily. She was shadowed by his figure as he sat beside her, and so he did not see the tears that quivered in her eyes. After a second or two, during which she had passed her handkerchief quickly, almost stealthily, across her face, she said, “But your question, you say, has answered itself.”

“I hope so; I hope I may believe that there 杭州桑拿洗浴会所 is nothing wrong between us.”


“I have not offended you in any way!”


“Nor unwittingly hurt you? I daresay I am awkward and abrupt sometimes.”

“Pray believe that I have nothing in the world to blame you for.”

“Thank you. I know you speak sincerely. Your friendship is very precious to me.”

She answered nothing, but hesitatingly put out her hand, which he grasped for an instant, and would have raised to his lips, but that she drew it suddenly away, murmuring something about her cushions being awry, and trying tremblingly to rearrange them.

He moved the cushions that supported her shoulders with a tender, careful touch, and placed them so that her posture in the lounging-chair might be easier. She clasped her hands together and laid her head back wearily.

“You don’t know how precious your friendship 杭州哪里有浴场可以吹 is to me,”杭州夜网桑拿体验论坛 he went on lowering his voice still more. “I never had a sister. But I have often thought how sweet the companionship


of a sister must be. I am very much alone in the world; and, if I dared, I would speak to you with fraternal confidence.”

“Pray speak so,” answered Minnie, almost in a whisper. “I should like—to be—of some comfort to you.”

There was a silence. It was scarcely broken by Miss Chubb’s murmured remark to Mr. Warlock, that the moon was beginning to make a ring of light behind the poplar trees on the other side of the Whit, like the halo round the head of a saint. The twilight deepened, Rhoda’s fingers ceased to ply the needle, but she remained at the window looking over at the moonlit poplars, while Miss Chubb’s voice softly droned out some rambling speech, which jarred no more on the quietude of the 杭州洗浴中心按摩hour than did the 杭州桑拿酒店 ripple of the river.

“You have been so good to her!” said Diamond suddenly, under cover of this


murmur; and then paused for a moment as if awaiting a reply. Minnie did not speak. Presently he went on. “You know her and understand her better than any of the people here.”

“I think every one likes Rhoda,” said Minnie at length.

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