Ball of Fat 32
He began talking to her in that familiar, paternal, slightly contemptuous tone
which men of his class adopt in speaking to women like her, calling her "my dear
child," and talking down to her from the height of his exalted social position
and stainless reputation. He came straight to the point.
"So you prefer to leave us here, exposed like yourself to all the violence which would follow on a repulse of the Prussian troops, rather than consent to surrender yourself, as you have done so many times in your life?"
The girl did not reply.
He tried kindness, argument, sentiment. He still bore himself as count, even while adopting, when desirable, an attitude of gallantry, and making pretty—nay, even tender—speeches. He exalted the service she would render them, spoke of their gratitude; then, suddenly, using the familiar "thou":
"And you know, my dear, he could boast then of having made a conquest of a pretty girl such as he won't often find in his own country."
Ball of Fat did not answer, and joined the rest of the party.
As soon as they returned she went to her room, and was seen no more. The general anxiety was at its height. What would she do? If she still resisted, how awkward for them all!
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