There was the cook now, Mildred, Marian,some such name as that—a red—headed woman,quick-tempered like all her sort, but kind, too, ifyou knew the way with her. Many a laugh theyhadihad together. She saved a plate of soup forMaggie; a bite of ham, sometimes; whatever wasover. They lived well in those days. They hadeverything they wanted (glibly, jovially, with thetea hot in her, she unwound her ball of memories,sitting in the wicker arm—chair by the nurseryfender). There was always plenty doing, peoplein the house, twenty staying sometimes, andwashing up till long past midnight.

Mrs. Bast (she had never known them; hadlived in Glasgow at that time) wondered, puttingher cup down, whatever they hung that beast’sskull there for? Shot in foreign parts no doubt.

It might well be, said Mrs. McNab, wantoning on with her memories; they had friends ineastern countries; gentlemen staying there, ladiesin evening dress; she had seen them once throughthe dining—room door all sitting at dinner.Twenty she dared say in all their jewellery, andshe asked to stay help wash up, might be till aftermidnight.

Ah, said Mrs. Bast, they’d find it changed.She leant out of the window. She watched her soneorge scything the grass. They might well ask,217

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