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from the stupor of sleep into which I had fallen, I hurried to the door of the closed studio. It was ajar! I pushed it boldly open and entered. The room was long and lofty, but destitute of all furniture save a battered-looking, worm-eaten easel that leaned up against the damp stained wall. I approached this relic of the painter's art, and examining it closely, perceived the name “Manon” cut roughly yet deeply upon it. Looking curiously about, I saw what had nearly escaped my notice—a sort of hanging cupboard, on the left-hand side of the large central bay window. I tried its handle
-it was unlocked, and opened easily. Within it lay three things—a palette, on which the blurring marks of long obliterated pigments were still faintly visible; a dagger, unsheathed, with its blade almost black with rust; and--the silver filagree sticks of a fan, to which clung some mouldy shreds of yellow lace. I remembered the fan the "Lady with the Carnations” had carried at the Théâtre Français; and I pieced together her broken story. She had been slain by her artist lover-slain in a sudden fit of jealousy ere the soft colours on his picture of her were yet dry-murdered in this very studio; and no doubt that hidden dagger was the weapon used. Poor Manon! Her frail body had been cast from the high rock on which the château stood “into the wild cold waves," as she or her spirit had said; and her cruel lover had carried his wrath against her so far as to perpetuate a slander against her by writing “Caur perfide” on that imperishable block of stone! Full of pitying thoughts I shut the cupboard, and slowly left the studio, closing the door noiselessly after me.
That morning as soon as I could get Mrs. Fairleigh alone I told her my adventure, beginning with the very first experience I had had of the picture in the Louvre. Needless to say, she heard me with the utmost incredulity.
"I know you, my dear!" she said, shaking her head at me wisely; "you are full of fancies, and always dreaming about the next world, as if this one wasn't good enough for you. The whole thing is a delusion.”
"But," I persisted, "you know the studio was shut and locked; how is it that it is open now?"
“It is'nt open!” declared Mrs. Fairleigh—“though I'm quite willing to believe you dreamt it was.”
"Come and see!" I exclaimed eagerly; and I took her upstairs, though she was somewhat reluctant to follow me. As I had said, the studio was open. I led her in, and showed her the name cut on the easel, and the hanging cupboard with its contents.
As these convincing proofs of my story met her eyes, she shivered a little, and grew rather pale.
“Come away," she said nervously-"you are really too horrid! I can't bear this sort of thing! For goodness' sake, keep your ghosts to yourself!" I saw she was vexed and pettish, and I readily followed her out of the barren, forlorn-looking room. Scarcely were we well outside the door when it shut to with a sharp click. I tried it-it was fast locked! This was too much for Mrs. Fairleigh. She rushed downstairs in a perfect paroxysm of terror; and when I found her in the breakfast-room she declared she would not stop another day in the house. I managed to calm her fears, however; but she insisted on my remaining with her to brave out whatever else might happen at what she persisted now in calling the "haunted” château, in spite of her practical theories. And so I stayed on. And when we left Brittany, we left all together, without having had our peace disturbed by any more manifestations of an unearthly nature. One thing alone troubled me a little—I should have liked to obliterate the word "perfide" from that stone, and to have had “ fidèle” carved on it instead; but it was too deeply engraved for this. However, I have seen no more of “the Lady with the Carnations.” But I know the dead need praying for—and that they often suffer for lack of such prayers,--though I cannot pretend to explain the reason why. And I know that the picture in the Louvre is not a Greuze, though it is called one-- -it is the portrait of a faithful woman deeply wronged;
A vision of loveliness? A dream of beauty? Yes, she was all this and more. She was the very embodiment of ethereal grace and dainty delicacy. The first time I saw her she was queen of a fairy revel. Her hands grasped a sceptre so light and sparkling that it looked like a rod of moonbeams; her tiny waist was encircled by a garland of moss rosebuds, glittering with dew, and a crown of stars encircled her fair white brow. Innocent as a snow-flake she looked, with her sweet serious eyes and falling golden hair; yet she was “Mademoiselle Zéphyr”.
-a mere danseuse on the stage of a great and successful theatre--an actress whose gestures were simple and unaffected, and therefore perfectly fascinating, and whose trustful smile at the huge audience that nightly applauded her efforts startled sudden tears out of many a mother's eye, and caused many a fond father's heart to grow heavy with foreboding pity. For “Mademoiselle Zéphyr” was only six years old! Only six summers had gilded the "refined