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Chapter 4

  • Little more than a year later the transformation which the old Valmet plac_ad undergone was the talk and wonder of Cote Joyeuse. One would have looke_n vain for the ruin; it was no longer there; neither was the log cabin. Bu_ut in the open, where the sun shone upon it, and the breezes blew about it,
  • was a shapely structure fashioned from woods that the forests of the State ha_urnished. It rested upon a solid foundation of brick.
  • Upon a corner of the pleasant gallery sat Leandre smoking his afternoon cigar,
  • and chatting with neighbors who had called. This was to be his pied a terr_ow; the home where his sisters and his daughter dwelt. The laughter of youn_eople was heard out under the trees, and within the house where La Petite wa_laying upon the piano. With the enthusiasm of a young artist she drew fro_he keys strains that seemed marvelously beautiful to Mam'selle Pauline, wh_tood enraptured near her. Mam'selle Pauline had been touched by the re-
  • creation of Valmet. Her cheek was as full and almost as flushed as L_etite's. The years were falling away from her.
  • Ma'ame Pelagie had been conversing with her brother and his friends. Then sh_urned and walked away; stopping to listen awhile to the music which La Petit_as making. But it was only for a moment. She went on around the curve of th_eranda, where she found herself alone. She stayed there, erect, holding t_he banister rail and looking out calmly in the distance across the fields.
  • She was dressed in black, with the white kerchief she always wore folde_cross her bosom. Her thick, glossy hair rose like a silver diadem from he_row. In her deep, dark eyes smouldered the light of fires that would neve_lame. She had grown very old. Years instead of months seemed to have passe_ver her since the night she bade farewell to her visions.
  • Poor Ma'ame Pelagie! How could it be different! While the outward pressure o_ young and joyous existence had forced her footsteps into the light, her sou_ad stayed in the shadow of the ruin.