certainly expect an explanation. What should he say without betraying the confidence imposed in him by Count Rondell? And yet he longed to tell her of what was really impelling him. Should he send her the photograph? And if he did what could he say? No—he must say nothing about the girl. He must write generalities,—perhaps drop a hint or so, and let it go at that.
The monotonous regular ticking of the clock in the adjoining public room reminded him forcibly that time was passing and that the train would not wait. Dipping the pen into the bottle, he began and wrote rapidly:
Brindisi, October ——, 189—. My Dearest Mother: Since leaving Port Said I have had time to reflect on my lengthened stay here, of which I advised you by cable from Suez. In Port Said I received your reply saying that father’s illness was not serious and my further stay in Europe permissible. Also that you and Sis were well. Here in Brindisi I received further