The signing of the contract was marked by no special incident; only when the notary, with a low, modest voice read the clause by which the General made Mademoiselle d'Estrelles heiress to all his fortune, Camors was amused to remark the superb indifference of Mademoiselle Charlotte, the smiling exasperation of Mesdames Bacquiere and Van-Cuyp, and the amorous regard which Madame de la Roche-Jugan threw at the same time on Charlotte, her son, and the notary.

The dinner, however, was not less gay than usual, thanks to Mesdames Bacquiere and Van-Cuyp, and to their husbands, who had arrived from Paris to pass Sunday with them. To celebrate this happy meeting, they drank very freely of champagne, talked slang, and imitated actors, causing much amusement to the servants.

She could not even breakfast; happiness had taken away her appetite. The ice once broken, all tried to make themselves agreeable. The Tonneliers did not behave, however, with the same warmth as the tender Countess, and it was easy to see that Mesdames Bacquiere and VanCuyp could not picture to themselves, without envy, the shower of gold and diamonds about to fall into the lap of their cousin.

Mesdames Bacquiere and Van-Cuyp, instigated by their mother, applied themselves assiduously to making the General feel all the sacred joys that cluster round the domestic hearth. They enlivened his household, exercised his horses, killed his game, and tortured his piano.

Mesdames Bacquiere and Van-Cuyp, instigated by their mother, applied themselves assiduously to making the General feel all the sacred joys that cluster round the domestic hearth. They enlivened his household, exercised his horses, killed his game, and tortured his piano.

But she had two daughters, both of them graceful, very elegant and sparkling. One was Madame Bacquiere, the wife of a broker; the other, Madame Van-Cuyp, wife of a young Hollander, doing business at Paris. Both interpreted life and marriage gayly; both floated from one year into another dancing, riding, hunting, coquetting, and singing recklessly the most risque songs of the minor theatres.

Messrs. Bacquiere and Van-Cuyp were naturally the first sufferers, and their charming wives made them understand, at intervals during the day, that they thoroughly despised them. It was a bitter Sunday for those poor fellows. The Tonnelier family also felt that little more was to be done there, and left the next morning with a very cold adieu. The conduct of the Countess was more noble.

But she had two daughters, both of them graceful, very elegant and sparkling. One was Madame Bacquiere, the wife of a broker; the other, Madame Van-Cuyp, wife of a young Hollander, doing business at Paris. Both interpreted life and marriage gayly; both floated from one year into another dancing, riding, hunting, coquetting, and singing recklessly the most risque songs of the minor theatres.

The signing of the contract was marked by no special incident; only when the notary, with a low, modest voice read the clause by which the General made Mademoiselle d'Estrelles heiress to all his fortune, Camors was amused to remark the superb indifference of Mademoiselle Charlotte, the smiling exasperation of Mesdames Bacquiere and Van-Cuyp, and the amorous regard which Madame de la Roche-Jugan threw at the same time on Charlotte, her son, and the notary.

Messrs. Bacquiere and Van-Cuyp were naturally the first sufferers, and their charming wives made them understand, at intervals during the day, that they thoroughly despised them. It was a bitter Sunday for those poor fellows. The Tonnelier family also felt that little more was to be done there, and left the next morning with a very cold adieu. The conduct of the Countess was more noble.