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Marie Gourdon
A Romance of the Lower St. Lawrence

written by "Ogilvy, Maud"
...e pain is quite gone now. And how did your dinner-party go off?" "Oh! very well. I sat next The McAllister, and he was a little more lively than usual. He is most anxious to meet you. You know he comes from Canada." "Yes, I know," said Mademoiselle Laurentia abruptly. "Did you ever meet him there?" went on Elsie. "I used to know a family called McAllister a long time ago, when I was quite young." "Indeed? But, mademoiselle, don't talk as if you were a hundred. I'm sure you don't look much older than I." "In years, perhaps, I am not so very much older; but in thought, Elsie, a century." "Poor Mademoiselle Laurentia, your life has been a hard one, in spite of all its success. I don't want to intrude, but I often think you must have had some great sorrow. Have you?" "Yes, my dear, I have. I cannot talk of it to-night, though. No, no, not to-night at any rate." Elsie rather wondered why she laid such particular stress on the present time, but did not like to pursue the subject. "Elsie, would you like me to sing for you now?" asked Mademoiselle Laurentia suddenly. "This garden is an inspiration." "Yes, I should, above all things, if you feel well enough." "Then what shall it be? Choose." "Oh! if you please, Gounod's Slumber-song. This is just the time and place for it." Accordingly, with only the rippling of the fountain as an accompaniment, the sweet clear notes rose, and the highly-trained voice of the prima donna performed the difficult runs and trills of this most beautiful of slumber-songs with that precision and delicacy attained by years of practice and hard training. The song came to an end, and for a few moments no one spoke, till at length Elsie Severn, drawing a deep sigh of relief, said in her impulsive way: "Why, Mademoiselle Laurentia, I have never heard you sing like that before. I thought I had heard you at your best in London, but I never felt your singing so much as to-night." "I am ...

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