And they'd whitewashed me so beautifully! Poor dears! I wonder if I ought----[She looks towards the door.]
MALISE. Don't spoil it!
CLARE. I'd been walking up and down the Embankment for about three hours. One does get desperate sometimes.
MALISE. Thank God for that!
CLARE. Only makes it worse afterwards. It seems so frightful to them, too.
MALISE. [Softly and suddenly, but with a difficulty in finding the right words] Blessed be the respectable! May they dream of--me! And blessed be all men of the world! May they perish of a surfeit of--good form!
CLARE. I like that. Oh, won't there be a row! [With a faint movement of her shoulders] And the usual reconciliation.
MALISE. Mrs. Dedmond, there's a whole world outside yours. Why don't you spread your wings?
CLARE. My dear father's a saint, and he's getting old and frail; and I've got a sister engaged; and three little sisters to whom I'm supposed to set a good example. Then, I've no money, and I can't do anything for a l