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mony was over another lackey marched into the room with an ecclesiastical snuffer and extinguished the colored candles on the Christmas tree. The Grand Duke knew, then, irrevocably, that this play was over and done with for the day.

Af ter the Christmas tree came dinner, a basilisk meal partaken of in the shabby, glacial state dining-room in the company of the young Archduke and the Archduchesses Grisele and Ottilie, both of whom continued throughout the meal to fan themselves, in a sort of unremitting frenzy, despite the whistling drafts that never ceased piercing, like arrows of ice, their skinny unprotected bodies. Lina ate demurely, wrapped in her Russian sables. The Archduke Frederick Adolphus, a stout, taciturn, uninteresting boy, never stopped stuffing himself nor paused to raise his eyes from his plate. Only Eitel Gustav, eating no more than a bird, continued to fix his mistress with that enchanted gaze that sometimes so greatly disconcerted her.

After dinner the aunts played patience for an hour or so, Frederick Adolphus fought mimic battles with wooden soldiers, and the Grand Duke, quickly tiring of these diversions, would soon escort Lina homeward to the little pavilion in the park. They always drove together in one of the royal barouches that was drawn by a pair of very old and very thin white horses, and often this equipage waited outside the pavilion until the sky was barred by the rosy lights of dawn, and then the coachman, who was fat and asthmatic, would rouse himself, straighten his cockaded hat, and retie his muffler, for he soon learned that his master never returned home later than daybreak.

Lina was not particularly fond of the pavilion, but she liked it more than she liked the drafty, damp and ramshackle royal castle. The pavilion was cold, too, but at least it seemed cheerful, with its white bearskins spread