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ing off with–“”With Coral Hicks?” Strefford suggested.
She laughed. “Poor Coral Hicks! What on earth made you thinkof the Hickses?””Because I caugh tiffany co careers t a glimpse of them the other day at Capri.
They’re cruising about: they said they were coming in here.””What a nuisance! I do hope they won’t find us out. They wereawfully kind to Nick when he went to India with them, andthey’re so simple-minded that they would expect him to be gladto see them.”Strefford aimed his cigarette-end at a tourist on a puggaree whowas gazing up from his guidebook at the palace. “Ah,” hemurmured with satisfaction, seeing the shot take effect; then headded: “Coral Hicks is growing up rather pretty.””Oh, Streff–you’re dreaming! That lump of a girl withspectacles and thick ankles! Poor Mrs. Hicks used to say toNick: ‘When Mr. Hicks and I had Coral educated we presumedculture was in greater demand in Europe than it appears to be.'””Well, you’ll see: that girl’s education won’t interfere withher, on cheap tiffany ce she’s started. So then: if Nick came in and told youhe was going off–“”I should be so thankful if it was with a fright like Coral!
But you know,” she added with a smile, “we’ve agreed t tiffany uk hat it’snot to happen for a year.”
Chapter 6
SUSY found Strefford, after his first burst of nonsense,unusually kind and responsive. The interest he showed in herfuture and Nick’s seemed to proceed not so much from hishabitual spirit of scientific curiosity as from simplefriendliness. He was privileged to see Nick’s first chapter, ofwhich he formed so favourable an impression that he spokesternly to Susy on the importance of respecting her husband’sworking hours; and he even carried his general benevolence tothe length of showing a fatherly interest in Clarissa Vanderlyn.
He was always charming to children, but fitfully and warily,w tiffany uk sale ith an eye on his independence, and on the possibility of beingsuddenly bored by them; Susy had never seen him abandon theseprecautions so completely as he did with Clarissa.
“Poor little tiffany co jewelry sale devil! Who looks after her when you and Nick areoff together? Do you mean to tell me Ellie sacked the governessand went away without having anyone to take her place?””I think she expected me to do it,” said Susy with a touch ofasperity. There were moments when her duty to Clarissa weighedon her somewhat heavily; whenever she went off alone with Nickshe was pursued by the vision of a little figure waving wistfulfarewells from the balcony.
“Ah, that’s like Ellie: you might have known she’d get anequivalent when she lent you all this. But I don’t believe shethought you’d be so conscientious about it.”Susy considered. “I don’t suppose she tiffany co bracelet did; and perhaps Ishouldn’t have been, a year ago. But you see”–she hesitated–“Nick’s so awfully good: it’s made me look; at a lot of thingsdifferently ….””Oh, hang Nick’s goodness! It’s happiness that’s done it, mydear. You’re just one of the people with whom it happens toagree.”Susy, leaning back, scrutinized between her lashes his crookedironic face.
“What is it that’s agreeing with you, Streffy? I’ve never seenyou so human. You must be getting an outrageous price for thevilla.”Strefford laughed and clapped his hand on his breast-pocket. “Ishould be an ass not to: I’ve got a wire here saying they musthave it for another month at any price.””What luck! I’m so glad. Who are they, by the way?”He drew himself up out of the long chair in which he wasdisjointedly lounging, and looked down at her with a smile.
“Another tiffany sale couple of love-sick idiots like you and Nick …. Isay, before I spend it all let’s go out and buy somethingripping for Clarissa.”The days passed so quickly and radiantly that, but for herconcern for Clarissa, Susy would hardly have been conscious ofher hostess’s protracted absence. Mrs. Vanderlyn had said:
“Four weeks at the latest,” and the four weeks were over, andshe had neither arrived nor written to explain her non-appearance. She had, in fact, given no sign of life since herdeparture, save in the shape of a post-card which had reachedClarissa the day after the Lansings’ arrival, and in which Mrs.
Vanderlyn instructed her child to be awfully good, and not toforget to feed the mongoose. Susy noticed that this missive hadbeen posted in Milan.
She communicated her apprehensions to Strefford. “I don’t trustthat gree tiffany co 925 n-eyed nurse. She’s forever with the youngergondolier; and Clarissa’s so awfully sharp. I don’t see whyEllie hasn’t come: she was due last Monday.”Her companion laughed, and something in the sound of his laughsuggested that he probably knew as much of Ellie’s movements asshe did, if not more. The sense of disgust which the subjectalways roused in her made her look away quickly from histolerant smile. She would have given the world, at that moment,to have been free to tell Nick what she had learned on the nightof their arrival, and then to have gone away with him, no matterwhere. But there was Clarissa–!
To fortify herself against the temptation, she resolutely fixedher thoughts on her husband. Of Nick’s beatitude there could beno doubt. He adored her, he revelled in Venice, he rejoiced inhis work; and concerning the qual tiffany co terminal 5 ity of that work her judgmentwas as confident as her heart. She still doubted if he wouldever earn a living by what he wrote, but she no longer doubtedthat he would write something remarkable. The mere fact that hewas engaged on a philosophic romance, and not a mere novel,seemed the proof of an intrinsic superiority. And if she hadmistrusted her impartiality Strefford’s approval would havereassured her. Among their friends Strefford passed as anauthority on such matters: in summing him up his eulogistsalways added: “And you know he writes.” As a matter of fact,the paying public had remained cold to his few published pages;but he lived among the kind of people who confuse taste withtalent, and are impressed by the most artless attempts atliterary expression; and though he affected to disdain theirjudgment, and his own effort tiffany and co s, Susy knew he was not sorry tohave it said of him: “Oh, if only Streffy had chosen–!”Strefford’s approval of the philosophic romance convinced herthat it had been worth while staying in Venice for Nick’s sake;and if only Ellie would come back, and carry off Clarissa to St.
Moritz or Deauville, the disagreeable episode on which theirhappiness was based would vanish like a cloud, and leave them tocomplete enjoyment.
Ellie did not come; but the Mortimer Hickses did, and NickLansing was assailed by the scruples his wife had foreseen.
Strefford, coming back one evening from the Lido, reportedhaving recognized the huge outline of the Ibis among thepleasure craft of the outer harbour; and the very next evening,as the guests of Palazzo Vanderlyn were sipping their ices atFlorian’s, the Hickses loomed up across the Piazza.
tiffany co outlet fake Susy pleaded in vain with her husband in defence of his privacy.
“Remember you’re here to write, dearest; it’s your duty not tolet any one interfere with that. Why shouldn’t we tell themwe’re just leaving!””Because it’s no use: we’re sure to be always meeting them.
And besides, I’ll be hanged if I’m going to shirk the Hickses.
I spent five whole months on the Ibis, and if they bored meoccasionally, India didn’t.””We’ll make them take us to Aquileia anyhow,” said Streffordphilosophically; and the next moment the Hickses were bearingdown on the defenceless trio.
They presented a formidable front, not only because of theirmere physical bulk–Mr. and Mrs. Hicks were equally andmajestically three-dimensional–but because they never movedabroad without the escort of two private secretaries (one forthe foreign languages) tiffany co , Mr. Hicks’s doctor, a maiden lady knownas Eldoradder Tooker, who was Mrs. Hicks’s cousin andstenographer, and finally their daughter, Coral Hicks.
Coral Hicks, when Susy had last encountered the party, had beena fat spectacled school-girl, always lagging behind her parents,with a reluctant poodle in her wake. Now the poodle had gone,and his mistress led the procession. The fat school-girl hadchanged into a young lady of compact if not graceful outline; along-handled eyeglass had replaced the spectacles, and throughit, instead of a sullen glare, Miss Coral Hicks projected on theworld a glance at once confident and critical. She looked sostrong and so assured that Susy, taking her measure in a flash,saw that her position at the head of the procession was notfortuitous, and murmured inwardly: “Thank goodness she’s notpret tiffany co engagement rings ty too!”If she was not pretty, she was well-dressed; and if she wasovereducated, she seemed capable, as Strefford had suggested, ofcarrying off even this crowning disadvantage. At any rate, shewas above disguising it; and before the whole party had beenseated five minutes in front of a fresh supply of ices (withEldorada and the secretaries at a table slightly in thebackground) she had taken up with Nick the question ofexploration in Mesopotamia.
“Queer child, Coral,” he said to Susy

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