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osity common to those who are passionately in love, and would have decked her in jewels from top to toe had she consented, but she would not consent.

"Besides, my dear, you must save your money. Look at me—I've always saved money, and I assure you it accounts for much of my success."

"Let me at least buy you a carriage and horses. You need them, here in the country."

"Very well, you can do that if you like, since you will use them as much as I do. But I never met such a strange young man. You drop from the skies into my drawingroom, conquer me in one second, and seem to have your pockets stuffed with gold into the bargain! Teil me, why haven't women got hold of you before?"

"Because, as you very well know, I thought only of the Ondine."

"What were your family about to send you all alone to Paris, so young and so rich?"

"My uncle and aunt, who brought me up, thought that it would be good for me, after I came down from Oxford, to live for a few months in Paris to study French."

"And if they knew of me?"

He laughed. "I told them I left Paris for Fontainebleau because I had discovered an admirable teacher in this part of the world."

"I adore you for saying that."

There was a gaiety, an innocence, about the young Englishman that Lina had never before encountered in any man. In some ways he was extraordinarily youthful for his age; he was without guile, and would, she knew, have been easy to deceive, a trait in his character that made a curious appeal to something protective in her own. Like most Englishmen of his age and class, he was completely honest, sweet-tempered, inexperienced and temperamental.