WHEN Michael rose from the refectory table, Fleur had risen too. Two days and more since she left Wilfrid's rooms, and she had not recovered zest. The rifling of the oyster life, the garlanding of London's rarer flowers which kept colour in her cheeks, seemed stale, unprofitable. Those three hours, when from shock off Cork Street she came straight to shocks in her own drawing-room, had dislocated her so that she had settled to nothing since. The wound reopened by Holly had nearly healed again. Dead lion beside live donkey cuts but dim figure. But she could not get hold again of--what? That was the trouble: What? For two whole days she had been trying. Michael was still strange, Wilfrid still lost, Jon still buried alive, and nothing seemed novel under the sun. The only object that gave her satisfaction during those two dreary, disillusioned days was the new white monkey. The more she looked at it, the more Chinese it seemed. It summed up the satirical truth of which she was perhaps subconscious, that all her little modern veerings and flutterings and rushings after the future showed that she believed in nothing but the past. The Age had overdone it and must go back to ancestry for faith. Like a little bright fish out of a warm bay, making a splash in chill strange waters, Fleur felt a subtle nostalgia.
In her Spanish room, alone with her own feelings, she stared at the porcelain fruits. They glowed, cold, uneatable! She took one up. Meant for a passion fruit? Alas! Poor passion! She dropped it with a dull clink on