"Rotten day, wasn't it?'91 said yes it was rather.
"That's a nice cob you were on. Jumped a bit too
big for you at that fence outside Hoath Wood, didn't
she?" He grinned good-humouredly. I went red in
the face, but managed to blurt out a confused inquiry
after the health of his chestnut pony. But before he
could reply the Dumborough boy had shouted some-
thing at him and I was obliged to pay attention to
the little girl alongside of me.
"Do you hunt much?" she inquired, evidently
impressed by what she had overheard. Rather loftily
I replied that I hunted whenever I got the chance,
inwardly excusing myself with the thought that it
wasn't my own fault that Pd only had one chance
so far. . . .
I was now positively enjoying the party, but shortly
afterwards Aunt Evelyn came gliding across the dark
polished floor at the end of a polka and adroitly
extricated me from the festivities. . . . "Really,
darling, don't you think it's almost time we went
I wished she wouldn't call me darling in public,
but I fetched my overcoat and followed obediently
down to the draughty entrance hall. Denis happened
to be sitting on the stairs with his partner. He
jumped up politely to allow my aunt to pass. I shot
a shy glance at his face.
"Coming to Heron's Gate on Tuesday?" he asked.
Deeply gratified, I said I was afraid it was too far
"You ought to try and get there. They say it's
one of the best meets.9' He sat down again with a
nod and a smile.
"Wasn't that young Milden—the nice-mannered
boy you spoke to as we went out?" asked Aunt