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effort of an exhausted aging woman, and could not in the least imagine just what furious emotion had goaded her into a display at once so frenzied and so exquisite. Vaguely he supposed, when he thought about it at all, that Rosa's success had irritated her.

Now, after dancing Barbe-Bleue, she said to him casually:

"If we suffer from insomnia to-night, Borek, and once more pace our respective balconies, I invite you to share an iced drink with me in my room. It will be less lonely, more convivial, and we can smoke cigarettes, and gossip until we feel sleepy."

"Ah! To-night I can't."

"Why not?"

"I have a supper, with some cömrades, and I shall be late."

"What of it?"

"I teil you," Borek repeated obstinately, "I shall not be walking about on the balcony to-night. I shall be with comrades."

"What comrades?" Lina demanded.

"You are not acquainted with all my friends, Lina Varsovina."

"You have friends in San Pablo? That's exceedingly interesting! However, I invite you, and therefore you can quite simply make your excuses to these mysterious friends, whoever they may be."

"That's impossible."

"Indeed! I suppose you are chasing some woman?"

Her tone conveyed an immense, an inhuman disdain for the emotions of normal existence.

"I am busy to-night," Borek repeated.

"Duflos?" Lina sneered.

"Duflos?" He thought of Paul, and grew suddenly angry. "Duflos is not my friend."