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pernicious rascals. We can't even protect them from themselves."
An immense gulf seemed to open between father and daughter as he said
"I don't see," gasped Ann Veronica, "why parents and children...
shouldn't be friends."
"Friends!" said her father. "When we see you going through disobedience
to the devil! Come, Molly, she must go her own way. I've tried to use my
authority. And she defies me. What more is there to be said? She defies
It was extraordinary. Ann Veronica felt suddenly an effect of tremendous
pathos; she would have given anything to have been able to frame and
make some appeal, some utterance that should bridge this bottomless
chasm that had opened between her and her father, and she could find
nothing whatever to say that was in the least sincere and appealing.
"Father," she cried, "I have to live!"
He misunderstood her. "That," he said, grimly, with his hand on the
door-handle, "must be your own affair, unless you choose to live at
Miss Stanley turned to her. "Vee," she said, "come home. Before it is
"Come, Molly," said Mr. Stanley, at the door.
"Vee!" said Miss Stanley, "you hear what your father says!"
Miss Stanley struggled with emotion. She made a curious movement toward
her niece, then suddenly, convulsively, she dabbed down something lumpy
on the table and turned to follow her brother. Ann Veronica stared for a
moment in amazement at this dark-green object that clashed as it was
put down. It was a purse. She made a step forward. "Aunt!" she said, "I
Then she caught a wild appeal in her aunt's blue eye, halted, and the
door clicked upon them.
There was a pause, and then the front door slammed....
Ann Veronica realized that she was alone with the world. And this time
the departure had a tremendous effect of finality. She had to resist an
impulse of sheer terror, to run out after them and give in.
"Gods," she said, at last, "I've done it this time!"
"Well!" She took up the neat morocco purse, opened it, and examined the
It contained three sovereigns, six and fourpence, two postage stamps, a
small key, and her aunt's return half ticket to Morningside Park.
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