"About that wretched dress," she said at length. "Got it stained with chocolate first time I wore it, and neither I nor Janet can get it out." "Must have it dyed again," continued Diva. "Thought I'd better tell you. Else you might have yours dyed the same colour as mine again. Kingfisher-blue to crimson-lake. All came out of Vogue and Mrs. Trout. Rather funny, you know, but expensive.
But what Tilling did not and could not know was that this, the first of the autumn after-dinner bridge-parties, was destined to look on the famous teagown of kingfisher-blue, as designed for Mrs. Trout.
Diva's mind flew off to the subject of dress, and the thought of the awful tragedy concerning the tea-gown of kingfisher-blue, combined with the endive salad, gave a wry twist to her mouth for a moment. "I, as you know," continued Mr. Wyse, "am no hand at bridge." "Oh, Mr. Wyse, you play beautifully," interpolated Elizabeth. "Too flattering of you, Miss Mapp.
"Dear Major Benjy," she said, "he has refused to see him," and she cut the string of the large cardboard box which had just arrived from the dyer's with the most pleasurable anticipations.... Well, it was certainly very magnificent, and Miss Greele was quite right, for there was not the faintest tinge to show that it had originally been kingfisher-blue.
For the moment she felt nothing but enthusiastic sympathy with Elizabeth, in spite of her kingfisher-blue gown.... What on earth, in parenthesis, was she to do with hers? She could not give it to Janet: it was impossible to contemplate the idea of Janet walking about the High Street in a tea-gown of kingfisher-blue just in order to thwart Elizabeth.... "Mr. Wyse seems taken with her," said Diva.
It's such lovely hair. And this is quite a new thing, and doesn't show at all; invented by a very nice hairdresser in Worcester. It's simplicity itself. Do let me show you!" Quickly going over, she removed the kingfisher-blue fillet, and making certain passes with her fingers through the hair, murmured: "It's so beautifully fine; it seems such a pity not to show it all, dear.
She had already consulted Miss Greele about it, who said that if the kingfisher-blue was bleached first the dye of crimson-lake would be brilliant and pure.... The thought of that, and the fact that Miss Greele's lips were professionally sealed, made her able to take Diva's arm as they strolled about the garden afterwards. The way in which both Diva and Susan had made up to Mr.
She did not, therefore, allow this possibility to dim the pleasure she anticipated from the discomfiture of darling Diva, who would be certain to appear in the kingfisher-blue tea-gown, and find herself ghastly and outshone by the crimson-lake which was the colour of Mrs.
Her mind was not, like poor Diva's, taken up with obstinate questionings about the kingfisher-blue tea-gown, for she had already determined what she was going to do about it. Naturally it was impossible to contemplate fresh encounters like that of last night, but another gown, crimson-lake, the colour of Mrs.
"So sweet of you to look in, dear," she said. "Shall we cut?" Naturally the malice of cards decreed that Miss Mapp and Diva should sit next each other as adversaries at the same table, and the combined effect of two lots of kingfisher-blue was blinding.