he doctor, thunderstruck, for it had never occurred to him that the nike air max 1 grey curiosityof a chaste woman concerning her unchaste sisters was so devouring. “How can you ask suchimmodest questions? You are not yourself. I will mix you a sedative.”
“I don’t want a sedative. I want to know. Oh, dear, this is my only chance to know what a badhouse looks like and now you are mean enough not totell me!”
“I noticed nothing. I assure you I was too embarrassed at finding myself in such a place to takenote of my surroundings,” said the doctor formally, more upset at this unsuspected revelation of hiswife’s character than he had been by all the previous events of nike air max 1 the evening. “If you will excuse menow, I will try to get some sleep.”
“Well, go to sleep then,” she answered, disappointment in her tones. Then as the doctor leanedover to remove his boots, her voice spoke from the darkness with renewed chee nike air max 1 red rfulness. “I imagineDolly has gotten it all out of old man Merriwether and she can tell me about it.”
“Good Heavens, Mrs. Meade! Do you mean to tell me that nice women talk about such thingsamong them—”
“Oh, go to bed,” said Mrs. Meade.
It sleeted the next day, but as the wintry twilight drew on the icy particles stopped falling and acold wind blew. Wrapped in her cloak, Melanie went bewilderedly down her front walk behind astrange negro coachman, who had summoned her mysteriously to a closed carriage waiting in frontof the house. As she came up to the carriage the door was ope cheap nike air max 1/90 premium/fb/black/nd/og/black smoke/leopard/premium black ned and she saw a woman in the dimulterior.
Leaning closer, peering inside, Melanie questioned: “Who is it? Won’t you come in the house?
It’s so cold—”
“Please come in here and set with me a minute, Miz Wilkes,” came a faintly familiar nike air max 1 sale voice, anembarrassed voice from the depths of the carriage.
“Oh, you’re Miss—Mrs.—Watling!” cried Melanie. “I did so want to see you! You must comein the house.”
“I can’t do that, Miz Wilkes.” Belle Watling’s voice sounded scandalized. “You come in hereand set a minute with me.”
Melanie entered the carriage and the coachman closed the door behind her. She sat down besideBelle and reached for her hand.
“How can I ever thank you enough for what you did today! How can any of us thank youenough!”
“Miz Wilkes, you hadn’t ought of sent me that note this mornin’. Not that I wasn’t p nike air max 1 roud to havea note from you but the Yankees might of got it. And as for sayin’ you was goin’ to call on me tothank me—why, Miz Wilkes, you must of lost your mind! The very idea! I come up here as soon as ‘twas dark to tell you you mustn’t think of any sech thing. Why, I—why, you—it wouldn’t befittin’ at all.”
“It wouldn’t be fitting for me to call and thank a kind woman who saved my husband’s life?”
“Oh, shucks, Miz Wilkes! You know what I mean!”
Melanie was silent for a moment, embarrassed by the implication. Somehow this handsome,sedately dressed woman sitting in the darkness of the carriage didn’t look and talk as she imagineda bad woman, the Madam of a House, should look and talk. She sounded like—well, a littlecommon and countrified but nice and warm hearted.
“You were wonderful before the provost marshal toda cheap air max 1 y, Mrs. Watling! You and the other—your—the young ladies certainly saved our men’s lives.”
“Mr. Wilkes was the wonderful one. I don’t know how he even stood up and told his story, muchless look as cool as he done. He was sure bleedin’ like a pig when I seen him last night. Is he goin’
to be all right, Miz Wilkes?”
“Yes, thank you. The doctor says it’s just a flesh wound, though he did lose a tremendous lot ofblood. This morning he was—well, he was pretty well laced with brandy or he’d never have hadthe strength to go through with it all so well. But it was you, Mrs. Watling, who saved them. Whenyou got mad and talked about the broken mirrors you sounded so—so convincing.”
“Thank you, Ma’m. But I—I thought Captain Butler done mighty fine too,” said Belle, shy pridein her voice.
“Oh, he was wonderful!” cried Melanie warmly. “The Yankees couldn’t help but believe histestimony. He was so smart about the whole affair. I can never thank him enough—or y nike air max 1 premium ou either!
How good and kind you are!”
“Thank you kindly, Miz Wilkes. It was a pleasure to do it I—I hope it ain’t goin’ to embarrassyou none, me sayin’ Mr. Wilkes come regular to my place. He never, you know—”
“Yes, I know. No, it doesn’t embarrass me at all. I’m just so grateful to you.”
“I’ll bet the other ladies ain’t grateful to me,” said Belle with sudden venom. “And I’ll bet theyain’t grateful to Captain Butler neither. I’ll bet they’ll hate him just this much more. I’ll bet you’llbe the only lady who even says thanks to me. I’ll bet they won’t even look me in the eye whenthey see me on the street. But I don’t care. I wouldn’t of minded if all their husbands got hung, ButI did mind about Mr. nike air max 1 black Wilkes. You see I ain’t forgot how nice you was to me durin’ the war, aboutthe money for the hospital. There ain’t never been a lady in this town nice to me like you was and Idon’t forget a kindness. And I thought about you bein’ left a widder with a little boy if Mr. Wilkesgot hung and—he’s a nice little boy, your boy is, Miz Wilkes. I got a boy myself and so I—”
“Oh, you have? Does he live—er—”
“Oh, no’m! He ain’t here in Atlanta. He ain’t never been here. He’s off at school. I ain’t seenhim since he was little. I—well, anyway, when Captain Butler wanted me to lie for those men Iwanted to know who the men was and when I heard Mr. Wilkes was one I never hesitated. I said tomy girls, I said, ‘I’ll whale the livin’ daylights out of you all if you don’t make a special point ofsayin’ you was with Mr. Wilkes all evenin’.”
“Oh!” said Melanie, still more embarrassed by Belle’s offhand reference to her “girls.” “Oh, thatwas—er—kind of you and—o cheap nike air max 1 f them, too.”
“No more’n you deserve,” said Belle warmly. “But I wouldn’t of did it for just anybody. If it hadbeen that Miz Kennedy’s husband by hisself, I wouldn’t of lifted a finger, no matter what CaptainButler said.”
“Well, Miz Wilkes, people in my business knows a heap of things. It’d surprise and shock a heapof fine ladies if they had any notion how much we knows about them. And she ain’t no good, MizWilkes. She kilt her husband and that nice Wellburn boy, same as if she shot them. She caused itall, prancin’ about Atlanta by herself, enticin’ niggers and trash. Why, not one of my girls—”
“You must not say unkind things about my sister-in-law.” Melanie stiffened coldly.
Belle put an eager placati nike air max 1 ebay ng hand on Melanie’s arm and then hastily withdrew it.
“Don’t freeze me, please, Miz Wilkes. I couldn’t stand it after you been so kind and sweet to me.
I forgot how you liked her and I’m sorry for what I said. I’m sorry about poor Mr. Kennedy bein’
dead too. He was a nice man. I used to buy some of the stuff for my house from him and he alwaystreated me pleasant. But Miz Kennedy—well, she just ain’t in the same class with you, MizWilkes. She’s a mighty cold woman and I can’t help it if I think so. … When are they goin’ to buryMr. Kennedy?”
“Tomorrow morning. And you are wrong about Mrs. Kennedy. Why, this nike air max 1 leopard very minute she’sprostrated with grief.”
“Maybe so,” said Belle with evident disbelief. “Well, I got to be goin’. I’m afraid somebodymight recognize this carriage if I stayed here longer and that wouldn’t do you no good. And, MizWilkes, if you ever see me on the street, you—you don’t have to speak to me. I’ll understand.”
“I shall be prou

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