THE WINDOWof a basin, that Mrs. Ramsay at last prompted thatparrot-like instinct which had picked up Mildred’swords quite accurately and could now produce them,if one waited, in a colourless singsong. Shifting fromfoot to foot, Cam repeated the words, "No, theyhaven’t, and I’ve told Ellen to clear away tea."

Minta Doyle and Paul Rayley had not come backthen. That could only mean, Mrs. Ramsay thought,one thing. She must accept him, or she must re-fuse him. This going off after luncheon for a walk,even though Andrew was with them—what could itmean? except that she had decided, rightly, Mrs.Ramsay thought (and she was very, very fond ofMinta), to accept that good fellow, who might notbe brilliant, but then, thought Mrs. Ramsay, realis-ing that James was tugging at her, to make her goon reading aloud the Fisherman and his Wife, shedid in her own heart infinitely prefer boobies toclever men who wrote dissertations; Charles Tans-ley, for instance. It must have happened, one wayor the other, by now.

But she read, "Next morning the wife awoke first,and it was just daybreak, and from her bed shesaw the beautiful country lying before her. Herhusband was still stretching himself. . . ."

But how could Minta say now that she wouldnot have him? Not if she agreed to spend whole85
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