most of them in gay evening dress. Mrs. Preen introduced her to a young lady, a Miss Knox, who was chatty and pleasant, and told her many of the names of those present. But after a while Miss Knox went away into the next room, leaving Alice alone.

She felt something like a fish out of water. Other people moved about here and there talking with this acquaintance and laughing with that; but Alice, conscious of being only the governess, did not like to do so. She was standing near one of the open windows, within shade of the curtains that were being swayed about by the draught, turning her gaze sometimes upon the rooms, sometimes to the road below.

Suddenly, her whole conscious being seemed struck as by a blow. Her pulses stopped, her heart felt faint, every vestige of colour forsook her cheeks. Walking slowly across the room, within a yard of her, came William Stane.

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