"We have our trained inquirers. That is the advantage of Societies such as ours; so that we don't personally have the unpleasantness. Some cases do baffle everybody. It's such very delicate work."
"You sometimes find you let in a rotter?" said Mr. Purcey, "or, I should say, a rotter lets you in! Ha, ha!"
Mrs. Tallents Smallpeace's eyes flew deliciously down his figure.
"Not often," she said; and turning rather markedly once more to Stephen: "Have you any special case that you are interested in, Mr. Dallison?"
Stephen consulted Cecilia with one of those masculine half-glances so discreet that Mrs. Tallents Smallpeace intercepted it without looking up. She found it rather harder to catch Cecilia's reply, but she caught it before Stephen did. It was, 'You'd better wait, perhaps,' conveyed by a tiny raising of the left eyebrow and a slight movement to the right of the lower lip. Putting two and two together, she felt within her bones that they were thinking of the little model. And she remembered the interesting moment in the omnibus when that attractive-looking man had got out so hastily.
There was no danger whatever from Mrs. Tallents Smallpeace feeling anything. The circle in which she moved did not now talk scandal, or, indeed, allude to matters of that sort without deep sympathy; and in the second place she was really far too good a fellow, with far too dear a love of life, to interfere with anybody else's love of it. At the same time it was interesting.
"That little model, now," she said, "what about her?"
"Is that the girl I saw?" broke in Mr. Purcey, with his accustomed shrewdness.