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(Reading time: 4 - 8 minutes)
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The Priceless Pearl
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The Priceless Pearl - 13 - Alice Duer Miller - Web Novel

"I think you might have asked me," said Williams.

  

He spoke in that tone of false comedy--as if anything you said to a child must be ridiculous--that was peculiarly annoying to Pearl.

  

Antonia bent her head and muttered that she had not thought he would have enjoyed it.

  

"I should have enjoyed it," he said, and drew Antonia closer, so that over her head he could give Pearl a hard, significant look.

  

Pearl rose to her feet. This was a situation she understood thoroughly.

  

She was not going to lose another job on account of a man--a boy rather, younger than herself. In spite of Williams' protests and teasing efforts to retain the child, she swept her up to her bedroom to finish her lessons. But she no longer had Antonia's full attention.

  

When asked again to spell "separate," Antonia answered, "He is handsome, isn't he?"

  

"Not to my mind," Pearl answered firmly. "He's clean and healthy looking."

  

"He's beautifully clean," said Antonia. "Think of going about with someone like that!" The measure of her collapse might be taken when a few minutes later she dashed to the window to

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