MOLLY BAWN. 293
says Cecil, laughing. ' I always think what a guy Nioba
must have been if she was indeed " all tears."'
' The worst thing about crying, I think,' says Molly,
* is the fatal desire one feels to blow one's nose—that is the
horrid part of it. I knew I was looking odious all the
time I was weeping over my ring, and that added to my
discomfort. By the by, Cecil, what were you doing at tlio
table with a pencil just before we broke up to-night? Sir
Penthony was staring at you fixedly all through—wonder¬
ing, I am sure, at your occupation, as, to tell the truth,
' Nothing very remarkable. I was inditing a " sonnet
to your eyebrow," or rather to your lids, they were so
delicately tinted, and were so much in unison with the ex¬
treme dejection of your entire bearing. I confess, uiakind
as it may sound, they moved me to laughter. Ah ! that
leminds me,' says Cecil, her expression changing to one of
comical terror, as she starts to her feet, ' Plantagenet came
up at the moment, and lest he should see my composition I
hid it within the leaves of the blotting-book. There it is
still, no doubt. What shall I do if anyone finds it in the
morning ? I shall be read out of meeting, as I have an in¬
distinct idea that, with a view to making you laugh, I
rather caricatured everyone in the room more or less.'
' Shall I run down for it ?' says Molly. ' I won't be a
moment, and you are quite undressed. In the blotting-book,
you said ? I shan't be any time,'
' Unless the ghosts detain you.'
' Or, what would be much worse, any of our friends,'
CHAPTER XX YL
A single stream of all her soft hrown haJi
Pour'd on one side.
Half light, half shade
She stood, a sight to make an old man yotmg,
Thrusting her little bare feet into her sHppers, she takes up
a candle and walks softly down the stairs, past the smoking