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45. Chapter Forty-five (continued)
The candles came at last, and it was time for moving homeward. Cutting paper carefully, and rolling it about the stalks of those same flowers, occasioned some delay; but even this was done in time, and Ruth was ready.
'Good night!' said Tom. 'A memorable and delightful visit, John! Good night!'
John thought he would walk with them.
'No, no. Don't!' said Tom. 'What nonsense! We can get home very well alone. I couldn't think of taking you out.'
But John said he would rather.
'Are you sure you would rather?' said Tom. 'I am afraid you only say so out of politeness.'
John being quite sure, gave his arm to Ruth, and led her out. Fiery-face, who was again in attendance, acknowledged her departure with so cold a curtsey that it was hardly visible; and cut Tom, dead.
Their host was bent on walking the whole distance, and would not listen to Tom's dissuasions. Happy time, happy walk, happy parting, happy dreams! But there are some sweet day-dreams, so there are that put the visions of the night to shame.
Busily the Temple fountain murmured in the moonlight, while Ruth lay sleeping, with her flowers beside her; and John Westlock sketched a portrait--whose?--from memory.
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