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|Discords||H. G. [Herbert George] Wells|
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"Why should I ever come back?" she said to herself, as she went down the staircase.
She went to the post-office and drew out and sent off her money to Ramage. And then she came out into the street, sure only of one thing--that she could not return directly to her lodgings. She wanted air--and the distraction of having moving and changing things about her. The evenings were beginning to draw out, and it would not be dark for an hour. She resolved to walk across the Park to the Zoological gardens, and so on by way of Primrose Hill to Hampstead Heath. There she would wander about in the kindly darkness. And think things out. . . .
Presently she became aware of footsteps hurrying after her, and glanced back to find Miss Klegg, a little out of breath, in pursuit.
Ann Veronica halted a pace, and Miss Klegg came alongside.
"Do YOU go across the Park?"
"Not usually. But I'm going to-day. I want a walk."
"I'm not surprised at it. I thought Mr. Capes most trying."
"Oh, it wasn't that. I've had a headache all day."
"I thought Mr. Capes most unfair," Miss Klegg went on in a small, even voice; "MOST unfair! I'm glad you spoke out as you did."
"I didn't mind that little argument."
"You gave it him well. What you said wanted saying. After you went he got up and took refuge in the preparation-room. Or else I would have finished him."
Ann Veronica said nothing, and Miss Klegg went on: "He very often IS--most unfair. He has a way of sitting on people. He wouldn't like it if people did it to him. He jumps the words out of your mouth; he takes hold of what you have to say before you have had time to express it properly."
"I suppose he's frightfully clever," said Miss Klegg.
"He's a Fellow of the Royal Society, and he can't be much over thirty," said Miss Klegg.
"He writes very well," said Ann Veronica.
"He can't be more than thirty. He must have married when he was quite a young man."
"Married?" said Ann Veronica.
"Didn't you know he was married?" asked Miss Klegg, and was struck by a thought that made her glance quickly at her companion.
Ann Veronica had no answer for a moment. She turned her head away sharply. Some automaton within her produced in a quite unfamiliar voice the remark, "They're playing football."
"It's too far for the ball to reach us," said Miss Klegg.
"I didn't know Mr. Capes was married," said Ann Veronica, resuming the conversation with an entire disappearance of her former lassitude.
"Oh yes," said Miss Klegg; "I thought every one knew."
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H. G. [Herbert George] Wells
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