200 MOLLY BAWN.
and misjudgments they have undergone at the hands of their
' To accuse me of anything so horrible!' says Molly
Indignantly. ' Oh, CecU ! I don't believe he could care for
me one bit and suspect me of it,'
' " Care for }"ou I " Nonsense, my dear, he adores you.
That is precisely why he has made such a fool of himself.
Trifles, light as air,
Are, to the jealcii.^, confirmations strong
As procifs of holy writ.
I like a man to be jealous—in reason. Though when Sir
Penthony walked cut from behind that hedge, looking as if
he could with pleasure devour me and Talbot at a bite, I
confess I could gladly have dispensed with the quality in
him. You should have seen his face—for once I was
' Poor Cecil! it must have been a shock. And all be¬
cause that tiresome young man wouldn't go away.'
' Just so. All might have been well bad he only seen
things in a reasonable light. Oh, I was so angry ! The
most charming cf your charms, MoUy,' says Cecil warmly,
' is youi" abUity to sympathise with one. You can feel so
thoroughly with and for one; and you never season your
remarks with unpalatable truths. You never say, " I told
you so," or " I knew how it would be," or " Didn't I warn
you?" or anything else equally objectionable. I really
would rather a person boxed my ears outright than give way
to such phrases as those, pretending they know all about a
catastrophe, after it has happened. And,' says her ladyship,
with a pensive sigh, ' you might perhaps (had you so chosen)
have accused me of flirting a leetle bit with that stupid
' Well, indeed, perhaps I might, dear,' says 3Iolly inno¬
' What, are you going to play the traitor after all that
flattery ? And if so, what am I to say to you about your
disgraceful encouragement of Captain Shadwell ?'
' I wonder if I did encourage him ?' says Molly con¬
tritely. ' At fii'.-t, perhaps, unconssciously, but lately 1 am
sure I didn't. Do you know, Cecil, I positively dislike
him I he is so dark and silent, and still persistent. But