The Bacillus of Beauty
"What is the matter?" the radiant stranger persisted. "You act as if--"
The smile grew sunnier; it rippled to a laugh that was merriment set to music.
"John! John Burke!" she said, giving my hands a little, impatient shake, just as Nelly used to do. "It isn't possible! Don't you--why, you goose! Don't you know me?"
Of course! I had known her from the beginning! A man couldn't be in the same room with Nelly Winship and feel just as if she were any other girl. But she was not Helen at all--that radiant impossibility! And yet she was. Or she said so, and my heart agreed. But when I would have drawn her to me, she stepped back in lovely confusion, with a fluttered question:--
"How long have you been here, John?"
That voice! Sweet, fresh; full of