What Will People Say: A Novelby Rupert Hughes
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THEY WERE AS OBLIVIOUS OF THEIR PERIL AS TRISTAN AND ISOLDE. (Read an excerpt) From his swaying eery he seemed to be completely lost in a current of idle wealth. The throng, except for the chauffeurs, the policemen, and a few men whose trades evidently fetched them to this lane of pleasure�the throng was almost altogether women. And to Forbes' eye, unused to city standards, almost all the women were princesses.
At first, as his glance fell on each radiant creature, his heart would cry: "There is one I could love! I never shall forget her beauty!" And before the vow of eternal memory was finished it was forgotten for the next.
By and by the show began to pall because it would not end. As peers become commonplace at a royal court, since there is nothing else there, so beauty canceled itself here by its very multitude. For the next mile only the flamboyantly gorgeous or the flamboyantly simple beauty caught his overfed eye. And then even these were lost in the blur of a kaleidoscope twirled too fast.
There was one woman, however, that he could not forget, because he could not find out what she was like. In the slow and fitful progress up the Avenue it chanced that his stage kept close in the wake of an open landaulet.The stage never fell far behind, and never quite won alongside.
A young woman was alone in the tonneau. At least, he judged that she was young, though his documents were scant. Her head was completely hidden from his view by a hat that was just exactly big enough to accomplish that work of spite.
It was a sort of inverted flower-pot of straw�one of those astonishing millinery jokes that women make triumphs of. It bore no ornament at all except a filmy white bird-of-paradise feather stuck in the center of the top and spraying out in a shape that somehow suggested an interrogation-mark.
Even a man could see that it was a beautiful plume and probably expensive. It had a sort of success of impudence, alone there, and it mocked Forbes by trailing along ahead of him, an unanswerable query.
He grew eager and more eager to see what flower-face was hidden under that overturned straw flower-pot of a hat.
- BN ID:
- Del Williams Media
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