FROM Herne Hill to St Peter Port was a change which made of Monica a new creature. The weather could not have been more propitious; day after day of still air and magnificent sky, with temperature which made a brisk walk at any hour thoroughly enjoyable, yet allowed one to sit at ease in the mid-day sunshine. Their lodgings were in the best part of the town, high up, looking forth over blue sea to the cliffs of Sark. Widdowson congratulated himself on having taken this step; it was like a revival of his honeymoon; never since their settling down at home had Monica been so grateful, so affectionate. Why, his wife was what he had thought her from the first, perfect in every wifely attribute. How lovely she looked as she sat down to the breakfast table, after breathing sea air at the open windows, in her charming dress, her black hair arranged in some new fashion just to please him! Or when she walked with him about the quays, obviously admired by men who passed them. Or when she seated herself in the open carriage for a drive which would warm her cheeks and make her lips redder and sweeter.
'Edmund,' she said to him one evening, as they talked by the fireside, 'don't you think you take life rather too gravely?'
'Gravely? Don't I seem to enjoy myself?'
'Oh yes; just now. But--still in a rather serious way. One would think you always had cares on your mind, and were struggling to get rid of them.'
'I haven't a care in the world. I am the most blessed of mortals.'
'So you ought to think yourself. But when we get back again, how will it be? You won't be angry with me? I really don't think I can live again as we were doing.'
'Not live as'--
His brow darkened; he looked at her in astonishment.
'We ought to have more enjoyment,' she pursued courageously.
'Think of the numbers of people who live a dull, monotonous life just because they can't help it; how they would envy Us, with so much money to spend, and free to do just what we like! Doesn't it seem a pity to sit there day after day alone'-