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"You need not be," said Lina dryly. She repeated, half to herself, "C'est une fille de marbre!"

She lighted a cigarette.

Another knock at the door.

"Will you see Monsieur Borek?" Marie wanted to know.

"Of course. For a moment."

Borek came into the room, also dressed for Paquerette.

"Lina Varsovina, what flowers! They are magnificent!"

"The English are always faithful to their favorites."

"We will dance divinely to-night, won't we?"

"It is quite possible," Lina agreed, but her hand trembled.

"I am very happy to dance with you again," Borek declared courteously.

"It is agreeable," she agreed. She asked casually: "Has Rosa many flowers?"

"I have no idea." He added, after a pause, "I imagine not."

There was a silence.

"You had better be going," she said.

"Yes, I haven't much time. Bonne chance, Lina Varsovina !"

"Bonne chance!"

She was left alone with Marie. There was another, longer silence.

"Open the door wider, Marie."

Marie obeyed.

"How strange," she said suddenly, "not to be dancing in the first ballet 1"

"It seems strange also to me."

"I am a fooi," Lina declared suddenly, with a growing sense of panic. "Look at me—I'm perfectly strong and well! As though I couldn't dance Paquerette to-night! What have I let them do to me?"