"Well - it mid be. The man has got on a blue coat and kerseymere leggings; he has black whiskers, and a reddish face. 'Tis a stuffed figure, with a falseface."
The din was increasing now - then it lessened a little.
"There - I shan't see, after all!" cried the disappointed first maid.
"They have gone into a back street - that's all," said the one who occupied the enviable position in the attic. "There - now I have got 'em all endways nicely!"
"What's the woman like? Just say, and I can tell in a moment if 'tis meant for one I've in mind."
"My - why--'tis dressed just as she was dressed when she sat in the front seat at the time the play- actors came to the Town Hall!"
Lucetta started to her feet; and almost at the instant the door of the room was quickly and softly opened. Elizabeth-Jane advanced into the firelight.
"I have come to see you," she said breathlessly. "I did not stop to knock - forgive me! I see you have not shut your shutters, and the window is open."
Without waiting for Lucetta's reply she crossed quickly to the window and pulled out one of the shutters. Lucetta glided to her side. "Let it be - hush!" she said peremptorily. in a dry voice, while she seized Elizabeth- Jane by the hand, and held up her finger. Their intercourse had been so low and hurried that not a word had been lost of the conversation without; which had thus proceeded:--
"Her neck is uncovered, and her hair in bands, and her back-comb in place; she's got on a puce silk, and white stockings, and coloured shoes."
Again Elizabeth-Jane attempted to close the window, but Lucetta held her by main force.
"'Tis me!" she said, with a face pale as death. "A procession - a scandal - an effigy of me, and him!"
The look of Elizabeth betrayed that the latter knew it already.
"Let us shut it out," coaxed Elizabeth-Jane, noting that the rigid wildness of Lucetta's features was growing yet more rigid and wild with the nearing of the noise and laughter. "Let us shut it out!"
"It is no use!" she shrieked out. "He will see it, won't he? Donald will see it! He is just coming home - and it will break his heart - he will never love me any more - and O, it will kill me - kill me!"
Elizabeth-Jane was frantic now. "O, can't something be done to stop it?" she cried. "Is there nobody to do it - not one?"
She relinquished Lucetta's hands, and ran to the door. Lucetta herself, saying recklessly "I will see it!" turned to the window, threw up the sash, and went out upon the balcony. Elizabeth immediately followed her, and put her arm round her to pull her in. Lucetta's eyes were straight upon the spectacle of the uncanny revel, now advancing rapidly. The numerous lights around the two effigies threw them up into lurid distinctness; it was impossible to mistake the pair for other than the intended victims. "Come in, come in," implored Elizabeth; "and let me shut the window!"
"She's me - she's me - even to the parasol - my green parasol!" cried Lucetta with a wild laugh as she stepped in. She stood motionless for one second - then fell heavily to the floor.
Almost at the instant of her fall the rude music of the skimmington ceased. The roars of sarcastic laughter went off in ripples, and the trampling died out like the rustle of a spent wind. Elizabeth was only indirectly
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