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Like man, like the wind, like the rose, it has spirit; but unlike any of the lower orders, of which man is one, it has no sensible wrapping unless deliberately it consents to inhabit one. This, as we know, it frequently does. I have mentioned several cases of the kind; Mrs. Ventris was one, Mabilla By-the-Wood was another.

"faedissima ventris proluvies." Up he got to verify the remark: Serius aut citius, sedem properamus ad unam. Now, unluckily for himself and the nocturnal tranquillity of the planter's house, just at that unfortunate hour the coushie-ants were passing across the seat of Cloacina's temple.

But I don't know that I should have helped myself thereby. To the night the things of the night pertain. If I could have had speech with Mrs. Ventris in that season of her radiancy there would have been no harm; but by day she was another creature. Thereby contact was impossible because it would have been horrible.

Given under our handes and seales this ffourth day of March in the seven and twentieth yeare of the Raigne of our most gracious Soveraigne Lord King Charles the Second A que Dni., juxta &c 1674 J Napier W Beecher G Blundell Hum: Monoux Will ffranklin John Ventris Will Spencer Will Gery St Jo Chernocke Wm Daniels T Browne W ffoster Gaius Squire"

Further conferences between the heads of departments under the presidency of the G.O.C., Major-General F. Ventris, revealed that the operations of the battalion were to be conducted in a very cold climate, and a private resident at tiffin that day at the Hong-Kong Club simply asked me "at what date I expected to leave for Vladivostok?"

I found out indeed this much about her ostensible state, that she was the wife of a cab-driver whose name was Ventris. He was an ill-conditioned, sottish fellow who treated her badly, but had given her a child. But he was chiefly on night-work at Euston, and the man whom I had seen familiar with her in the daytime was not he. Her reputation among her neighbours was not good.

But to myself only. It is not enough to explain a circumstance by negatives. If Quidnunc and Mrs. Ventris were not under our law, neither are the sun, moon and stars, neither are the apes and peacocks. But all these are under some law, since law is the essence of the Kosmos. Under what law then were Mrs. Ventris and Quidnunc? I burned to know that.

There is, of course, not the slightest doubt about it. Mrs. Ventris was a fairy wife. Mrs. Ventris was a puzzle to me for a good many years in fact until Despoina explained to me many things. For Mrs. Ventris and Mrs. Marks were both fairy wives, and the wood-girl, Mabilla King, whose case I am going to deal with was another.

The ruthlessness, for instance, of Quidnunc as he pursued and obtained his desire, had Quidnunc been a human creature, would have been revolting; the shamelessness of the fairy wife of Ventris had she been capable of shame, how shameful had that been! But I knew that these creatures were not human; I knew that they were not under our law; and so I explained everything to myself.

Thanks to it all thanks to it I did not become a nympholept. I did not haunt Parliament Hill o' nights. I did not spy upon the darkling motions of Mrs. Ventris. Desire, appetite, sex were not involved at all in this affair; nor yet was love. I was very prone to love, but I did not love Mrs. Ventris. In whatsoever fairy being I had seen there had been nothing which held physical attraction for me.