While his bill was being receipted at the desk, he wrote out a cable to his mother: canada goose womens coat He wondered whether Desire had told her mother that he had kissed her. Did girls tell their mothers things like that?Next morning he phoned her at the usual time. She was still sleeping; he left a request that she should call him. He waited till twelve. At last he grew impatient and phoned her again. He was told that she had gone out with Fluffy, leaving word that he would hear from her later. By three o’clock he had not heard. All day he had been kept at high tension on the listen. The cavalierness of her conduct roused his indignation. Her punishment was out of all proportion to his offense, especially after the way in which she had received the watch-bracelet A month ago he would have hurried out to send her a peace-offering of flowers. To-day he hurried out on a different errand.
“Shall we breakfast here or at my hotel?” canada goose womens coat “You—you played here,” he said. All day he had been white and silent “I’m sorry, but we really must be going now, old chap.”“Is it much? Really much?”Vashti gazed towards him and nodded, as much as to say, “I know what thoughts are passing.” She struck three chords.But his protestations worked no difference. One night, in crossing Times Square, she said, “You may take my arm if you choose.” When an hour later he tried to do it, she drew away from him, with, “I cross heaps of streets without that.” Sometimes, driving home, she would unglove a temptress hand and let it rest invitingly in her lap. At the first sign that he was going to take it, it would pop like a rabbit into the warren of her muff.“If you don’t know, I can’t tel! you.”The bell of the front door rang. It rang a second time.She rubbed her eyes and sat up. “What! Still holding me? I do think you’re the most patient man—— Do you still love me, Meester Deek?”He threw back the clothes and jumped out. Such imaginings were not allowed. But they returned. Like a snow-capped mountain in the dawning, his manhood caught the rose-red glow of passion and trembled, a tower of flame and ivory, above the imperiled valleys of experience.They scrutinized him carefully. He was probably nearing forty; he wore a straw hat, a black flannel suit with a thin white stripe running down it, patent-leather shoes and canvas spats. Everything about him was of expensive cut and bore the stamp of fashion. His face was wrinkled like a bloodhound’s, his hair sleek and tawny, his complexion brick-red with good living. His nose was slightly Roman, his eyes a sleepy gray; his attitude towards the world one of fastidious boredom. He was a large-framed man and would pass for handsome.“Please, mayn’t I move?”“I’ll try to be up early,” she promised. “We might even breakfast together. It’s the only meal we haven’t shared.”“Be back before you can say Jack Robinson.”She played with his fingers idly, lifting them up and letting them fall, like soldiers marking time. “You manicure them now. You’ve learnt something by coming to America—— Your living!” She smiled. “It seems to come easily enough. I hear you talk about it, but I never see you working.”She had picked up a quilt from the bed and wrapt it round him. Having drawn a chair to the fire, she sat rocking with his head against her shoulder. Since she had left the man, she had not spoken. Once the tapestry, falling into place, rustled as though the door were being opened. She turned gladly with a welcoming smile and remained staring into the darkness long after the smile had vanished. A footstep came along the passage. Again she turned, her lips parted in readiness to bid him enter. The footstep slowed as it reached the bedroom, hesitated and passed on.Her way of saying it made him feel that all women were queens and all men their servitors. His idea that love-affairs ended in marriage seemed rustic and adolescent. To be seen in the company of a pretty face was all the reward a man ought to expect for limousines, late suppers, tantalized hopes and the patient devotion of an honorable passion. He couldn’t bear that Desire should class herself with the nuns of pleasure, who dole out their lure as payment, and have blocks of ice where less virtuous women have hearts. In her scornful defense of Fluffy, she seemed to be building up a case for herself.She squeezed the little boy’s hand. “Who is she, Teddy?” Teddy looked blank. “Don’t know—not exactly. She was in Mrs. Sheerug’s house with Hal, and—and then she came and sang to me in bed.”“You needn’t be so fierce in denying. I didn’t ask you whether you’d killed anybody.”“She was interested.”He understood her depression now. If Fluffy was leaving New York, this was his chance. Somehow or other he must manage to hang on. He was glad he had not sent that cable to his mother.“Damn!” said Fluffy, giving way to temperament “I want to hide.” canada goose womens coat He stooped, smoothed back the gray hair and kissed her wrinkled forehead.For a week he had no news of her. Then his father said to him one morning, “Oh, by the way, The Garden Enclosed is going to be exhibited. I asked Miss Jodrell to lend it to me.”These farewells embodied for him the ghostly acme of romance. They were the balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet enacted on the stairway of a New York apartment-house. From such frail materials till the new day brought promise, he constructed the palace of his hopes and ecstasies. It was the ghost of happiness that he had found; happiness itself escaped him. He longed for her to love him. canada goose womens coat Against an easel rested an uncompleted masterpiece in the same medium. The right-hand half, which was done, revealed a negress heaving herself out of a marble slab with her arms stretched longingly towards the half which was only commenced. The subject was evidently that of Potiphar’s wife and Joseph. Outlined on the canvas of the unfinished half was a shrinking youth, bearing a faint resemblance to Mr. Hughes as he would have dressed had he been born in a warmer climate. canada goose womens coat It was nearly twelve. He was torn between his anxiety to see her and his shyness at intruding. If he had had only her to face, he would have gone to Euston; but she’d be surrounded by friends. When it was too late, he cursed his lack of enterprise.