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t warning to my little shantyat Versailles, and live there all alone on scrambled eggs.”The perfect house-keeper had replied to Susy’s enquiry: “Amsure Mrs. Melrose most happy”; and Susy, wit nike canada store hout furtherthought, had jumped into a Versailles train, and now stood inthe thin rain before the sphinx-guarded threshold of thepavilion.
The revolving year had brought around the season at which Mrs.
Melrose’s house might be convenient: no visitors nike canada online were to befeared at Versailles at the end of August, and though Susy’sreasons for seeking solitude were so remote from those she hadonce prefigured, they were none the less cogent. To be alone–alone! After those first exposed days when, in the persistentpresence of Fred Gillow and his satellites, and in the mockingradiance of cheap nike air max trainers late summer on the lagoons, she had fumed and nike canada turnedabout in her agony like a trapped animal in a cramping cage, tobe alone had seemed the only respite, the one craving: to bealone somewhere in a setting as unlike as possible to thesensual splendours of Venice, under skies as unlike its azureroof. If she could have chosen she would have crawled away intoa dingy inn in a rainy northern town, where she had never beenand no one knew her. Failing that unobtainable luxury, here shewas on the threshold of an empty house, in a deserted place,under lowering skies. She had shaken off Fred Gillow, sulkilydeparting for his moor (where she had half-promised to join himin September); the Prince, young Breckenridge, and the fewremaining survivors of the Venetian group, had dispersed in thedirection of the Engadine or Biarritz; and now she could atleast collect her wits, take st nike air max 95 ock of herself, and prepare thecountenance with which she was to face the next stage in hercareer. Thank God it was raining at Versailles!
The door opened, she heard voices in the drawing-room, and aslender languishing figure appeared on the threshold.
“Darling!” Violet Me cheap nike air max lrose cried in an embrace, drawing her intothe dusky perfumed room.
“But I thought you were in China!” Susy stammered.
“In China … in China,” Mrs. Melrose stared with dreamy eyes,and Susy remembered her drifting disorganised life, a life moreplanless, more inexplicable than that of any of the otherephemeral beings blown about upon the same winds of pleasure.
“Well, Madam, I thought so myself till I got a wire from Mrs.
Melrose last evening,” remarked the perfect house-keeper,following with Susy’s handbag.
Mrs. Melrose clutched her cavernous temples in her attenuatedhands. “Of course, of course! I had meant to go to China–no,India …. But I’ve discovered a genius … and Genius, youknow ….” Unable to complete her thought, she sank down upon apillowy divan, stretched out an arm, cried: “Fulmer! Fulmer!”and, while Susy Lansing stood in the middle of the room withwidening eyes, a man emerged from the more deeply cushioned andscented twilight of some inner apartme nike air max 1 nt, and she saw withsurprise Nat Fulmer, the good Nat Fulmer of the New Hampshirebungalow and the ubiquitous progeny, standing before her inlordly ease, his hands in his pockets, a cigarette between hislips, his feet solidly planted in the insidious depths of one ofViolet Melrose’s white leopard skins.
“Susy!” he shouted with open arms; and Mrs. Melrose murmured:
“You didn’t know, then? You hadn’t heard of his masterpieces?”In spite of herself, Susy burst into a laugh. “Is Nat yourgenius?”Mrs. Melrose looked at her reproachfully.
Fulmer laughed. “No; I’m Grace’s. But Mrs. Melrose has beenour Providence, and ….””Providence?” his hostess interrupted. “Don’t talk as if youwere at a prayer-meeting! He had an exhibition in New York …
it was the most fabulous success. He’s come abroad to makestudies for the decoration of my music-room in New York. UrsulaGillow has given him her garden-house at Roslyn to do. And Mrs.
Bockheimer’s ball-room–oh, Fulmer, where are the cartoons?”She sprang up, tossed about some fashion-papers heaped on alacquer table, and sank back exhausted by the effort. “I’d gotas far as Brindisi. I’ve tr nike air max 90 avelled day and night to be here tomeet him,” she declared. “But, you darling,” and she held out acaressing hand to Susy, “I’m forgetting to ask if you’ve hadtea?”An hour later, over the tea-table, Susy already felt herselfmysteriously reabsorbed into what had so long been her nativeelement. Ellie Vanderlyn had brought a breath of it to Venice;but Susy was then nourished on another air, the air of Nick’spresence and personality; now that she was abandoned, left againto her own devices, she felt herself suddenly at the mercy ofthe influences from which she thought she had escaped.
In the queer social whirligig from cheap nike air max which she had so lately fled,it seemed natural enough that a shake of the box should havetossed Nat Fulmer into celebrity, and sent Violet Melrosechasing back from the ends of the earth to bask in his success.
Susy knew that Mrs. Melrose belonged to the class of moralparasites; for in that strange world the parts were sometimesreversed, and the wealthy preyed upon the pauper. Whereverthere was a reputation t nike air max classic o batten on, there poor Violet appeared,a harmless vampire in pearls who sought only to feed on thenotoriety which all her millions could not create for her. Anyone less versed than Susy in the shallow mysteries of her littleworld would have seen in Violet Melrose a baleful enchantress,in Nat Fulmer her helpless victim. Susy knew better. Violet,poor Violet, was not even that. The insignificant EllieVanderlyn, with her brief trivial passions, her artless mixtureof amorous and social interests, was a woman with a purpose, acreature who fulfilled herself; but Violet was only a driftinginterrogation.
And what of Fulmer? Mustering with new eyes his short sturdily-built figure, his nondescript bearded face, and the eyes thatdreamed and wandered, and then suddenly sank into you likeclaws, Susy seemed to have found the key to nike air max 90 sale all his years ofdogged toil, his indifference to neglect, indifference topoverty, indifference to the needs of his growing family ….
Yes: for the first time she saw that he looked commonplaceenough to be a genius–was a genius, perhaps, even though it wasViolet Melrose who affirmed it! Susy looked steadily at Fulmer,their eyes met, and he smiled at her faintly through his beard.
“Yes, I did discover him–I did,” Mrs. Melrose was insisting,from the depths of the black velvet divan in which she lay sunklike a wan Nereid in a midnight sea. “You mustn’t believe aword that Ursula Gillow tells you about having pounced on his’Spring Snow Storm’ in a dark corner of the American Artists’
exhibition–skied, if you please! They skied him less than ayear ago! And naturally Ursula never in her life looked higherthan the first nike air max line at a picture-show. And now she actuallypretends … oh, for pity’s sake don’t say it doesn’t matter,Fulmer! Your saying that just encourages her, and makes peoplethink she did. When, in reality, any one who saw me at theexhibition on varnishing-day …. Who? Well, EddyBreckenridge, for instance. He was in Egypt, you say? Perhapshe was! As if one could remember the people about one, whensuddenly one comes upon a great work of art, as St. Paul did–didn’t he?–and the scales fell from his eyes. Well … that’sexactly what happened to me that day … and Ursula, everybodyknows, was down at Roslyn at the time, and didn’t come up forthe opening of the exhibition at all. And Fulmer sits there andlaughs, and says it doesn’t matter, and that he’ll paint anotherpicture any day for me to discover!”Susy had rung the door-bell nike air max sale with a

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