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31. CHAPTER XXXI (continued)
"Shhh!" said Carol, quite automatically. She tiptoed in to pat the pillow. As she returned to Erik she had a friendly sense of his waiting for her. They smiled at each other. She did not think of Kennicott, the baby's father. What she did think was that some one rather like Erik, an older and surer Erik, ought to be Hugh's father. The three of them would play--incredible imaginative games.
"Carol! You've told me about your own room. Let me peep in at it."
"But you mustn't stay, not a second. We must go downstairs."
"Will you be good?"
"R-reasonably!" He was pale, large-eyed, serious.
"You've got to be more than reasonably good!" She felt sensible and superior; she was energetic about pushing open the door.
Kennicott had always seemed out of place there but Erik surprisingly harmonized with the spirit of the room as he stroked the books, glanced at the prints. He held out his hands. He came toward her. She was weak, betrayed to a warm softness. Her head was tilted back. Her eyes were closed. Her thoughts were formless but many-colored. She felt his kiss, diffident and reverent, on her eyelid.
Then she knew that it was impossible.
She shook herself. She sprang from him. "Please!" she said sharply.
He looked at her unyielding.
"I am fond of you," she said. "Don't spoil everything. Be my friend."
"How many thousands and millions of women must have said that! And now you! And it doesn't spoil everything. It glorifies everything."
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