Philip expected to find a letter from Norah when he got back to his rooms, but there was nothing; nor did he receive one the following morning.
He had an uneasy sense that he was treating Norah badly; he dreaded reproaches; he knew she had a quick temper, and he hated scenes: perhaps the best way would be to tell her frankly that Mildred had come back to him and his love for her was as violent as it had ever been; he was very sorry, but he had nothing to offer Norah any more.
If he had any sense he would stick to Norah, she would make him much happier than he would ever be with Mildred: after all she loved him, and Mildred was only grateful for his help.
As they drove through Victoria Street Philip sat well back in the cab in case Norah should happen to be passing.
He thought he had better break the fact to Norah at once that he could not stay more than a few minutes.
He knew very well that Norah would not have hesitated.
"Look at Norah (good-morning, my dear) -- look, I say, at Norah.
Norah's dark, handsome face brightened into a smile -- then lightly clouded again with its accustomed quiet reserve.
Vanstone's sisters, who had died in early youth; and, in affectionate remembrance of her, he had called his second daughter by it -- just as he had called his eldest daughter Norah, for his wife's sake.
"You are kind to us in everything else, papa; and you make kind allowances for Magdalen's high spirits -- don't you?" said the quiet Norah, taking her father's part and her sister's with so little show of resolution on the surface that few observers would have been sharp enough to detect the genuine substance beneath it.
"Two for Norah," she announced, beginning with her sister.
Her father, with the letter in his hand, waited a little before he opened it; her mother looking at him, the while, with an eager, expectant attention which attracted Miss Garth's notice, and Norah's, as well as Magdalen's.