"I love you because you have a beautiful body and a beautiful mind because you are like a winged goddess of inspiration. Could there be a more perfect reason?" Mary was silent. Again the burden of his ideal oppressed her. There was no comfort in it. It might be above humanity, she felt, but it was not of it. Again her mind returned to the pictures and Farraday's criticism. "Sinister!"

Meanwhile, Mary could hardly wait for the real object of their expedition, the little house. When at last the car was announced, Mrs. Farraday's bonnet and cloak brought by a maid, and everybody, Jamie included, fitted into the machine, Mary felt her heart beating with excitement. Were they going to have a real little house for their baby?

The whole party met at the Grand Central, and boarded the train amid laughter, introductions, and much gay talk. Constance scintillated. The solid Mr. Elliot was quite shaken out of his sobriety, McEwan's grin was at its broadest, Farraday's smile its pleasantest, and the three young women whom Constance had collected bubbled and shrilled merrily.

Without it, I could not do my work." Mary smiled as she mentally contrasted these surroundings with Farraday's office, where she had last heard that expression. Was quiet so rare a privilege in America, she wondered? A moment, and a second damsel emerged, brown-haired, clad in a paler green, and carrying paper and pencil.

"Our mutual friend, McEwan, was here again yesterday, with a most glowing account of your work, Mr. Byrd; he seems to have adopted the role of press agent for the family." "He's the soul of kindness," said Mary. "Yes, a thoroughly good sort," Stefan conceded. "Here are the New York sketches," he went on, opening his portfolio on Farraday's desk. "Half a dozen of them."

"Yes, the man is all right, but if that is a sample of their attitude toward original work over here we have a pretty prospect of success. 'Genius, get thee behind me! would sum it up. Imbeciles!" He strode on, his face mutinous. Mary was thinking. She knew that Farraday's criticism of her husband's work was just. The word "sinister" had struck home to her.

"At least let me arrange for it," he urged. "Now, son, thee must not keep Mrs. Byrd out too late. Get her home before sundown," Mrs. Farraday's voice admonished. Obediently, every one moved toward the hall. At a word from McEwan, the mute Jamie ran to open the tonneau door.

Delighted with all his surroundings, he let his faunlike spirits have full play, and his keen, brown face and green-gold eyes flashed apparently simultaneously from every corner of the room. Gunther did not dance; Farraday's method was correct but quiet, and none of the men could rival Stefan in light-footed grace.

It was merely as if some animal were making a supreme physical effort. In about two minutes this was repeated. Farraday's pipe dropped on the hearth, Stefan tore upstairs. "What is it?" he asked at the open door. Something large and white moved powerfully on the bed. At the foot bent the little doctor, her hands hidden, and at the head stood the nurse holding a small can.

I don't know about the illustrations; you must consult your husband." They found themselves at the door bidding him goodbye: Mary with a sense of disappointment mingled with comprehension; Stefan not knowing whether the more to deplore what he considered Farraday's Philistinism, or to admire his critical acumen.