Smells like a...



" And," thought out poor Dora, while James was lumbering about overhead, " if he ever finds out this truth, he is a ruined man for life. I'll bum them all."

One must do her the credit to say that she was a wonderfully shrewd and determined girl. There was no chance of getting fire within half a mile. James was in a very sentimental mood about his mother ; and she knew that the moment he noticed these old letters he would wish to read them. Yet she, without fire, was entirely determined that they should be burnt without being read.

lie came slowly down after a little while, and she began at him.

" How dreadfully close the room smells; like a vault."

" But there are no dead men here," said James. " Your nose is too aristocratic, Dora. We are well enough used to this close smell."

"And to low fever," replied Dora. "Fudge; don't begin the dramatic repartee style of conversation just now. It is very pleasant, I don't doubt, when you always get the best of it; which you, by the way, never do. As a vehicle for conveying human thoughts from one soul to another, I should say the epigrammatic form of dialogue was weaker, shallower, and sillier than any other. If any true souls ever got en rapport through dramatic dialogue, they must have been the souls of two most incalculably shallow geese. I say that the place smells like a vault. And so it does. You say that there are no dead men here, but there are dead folks' memories. Dead folks had much better be burnt. When I die I shall go in for incremation."