"Excuse me, mamma; I am not in a kissing humour."
And so Vixen left her.
Mrs. Tempest sat by the fading fire, and cried herself into a gentle slumber. It was very hard. She had longed to pour the story of this second courtship--its thrilling, unexpected joys, its wondrous surprises--into a sympathetic ear. And Violet, the natural recipient of these gentle confidences, had treated her so cruelly.
She felt herself sorely ill-used; and then came soothing thoughts about her trousseau, her wedding-dress, the dress in which she should start for her wedding-tour. All things would of course be chastened and subdued. No woman can be a bride twice in her life; but Mrs. Tempest meant that the trousseau should, in its way, be perfect. There should be no rush or excitement in the preparation; nothing should be scamped or hurried. Calmness, deliberation, and a faultless taste should pervade all things.
"I will have no trimming but Valenciennes for my under-linen," she
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