He did not answer this, not knowing what to say. The mother sat bunched up in silence, her beautiful white hands, that had no rings whatsoever, clasping the pommels of her arm-chair.
“You can’t do it,” she said, almost bitterly. “You haven’t the nerve. You’re as weak as a cat, really—always were. Is this young woman staying here?”
“No,” said Gerald. “She is going home tonight.”
“Then she’d better have the dog-cart. Does she go far?”
“Only to Beldover.”
“Ah!” The elderly woman never looked at Gudrun, yet she seemed to take knowledge of her presence.
“You are inclined to take too much on yourself, Gerald,” said the mother, pulling herself to her feet, with a little difficulty.
“Will you go, mother?” he asked, politely.
“Yes, I’ll go up again,” she replied. Turning to