Ball of Fat 38
No one looked at her, no one thought of her. She felt herself swallowed up in
the scorn of these virtuous creatures, who had first sacrificed, then rejected
her as a thing useless and unclean. Then she remembered her big basket full of
the good things they had so greedily devoured: the two chickens coated in jelly,
the pies, the pears, the four bottles of claret; and her fury broke forth like a
cord that is overstrained, and she was on the verge of tears. She made terrible
efforts at self-control, drew herself up, swallowed the sobs which choked her;
but the tears rose nevertheless, shone at the brink of her eyelids, and soon two
heavy drops coursed slowly down her cheeks. Others followed more quickly, like
water filtering from a rock, and fell, one after another, on her rounded bosom.
She sat upright, with a fixed expression, her face pale and rigid, hoping
desperately that no one saw her give way.
But the countess noticed that she was weeping, and with a sign drew her husband's attention to the fact. He shrugged his shoulders, as if to say: "Well, what of it? It's not my fault." Madame Loiseau chuckled triumphantly, and murmured:
"She's weeping for shame."
The two nuns had betaken themselves once more to their prayers, first wrapping the remainder of their sausage in paper:
Then Cornudet, who was digesting his eggs, stretched his long legs under the opposite seat, threw himself back, folded his arms, smiled like a man who had just thought of a good joke, and began to whistle the Marseillaise.
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