The Goose Girl (Chapter 6, page 1 of 12)


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Chapter 6

The day promised to be mild. There was not a cloud anywhere, and the morning mists had risen from the valleys. It was good to stand in the sunshine which seemed to draw forth all the vagaries and weariness of sleep from the mind and body. Hans Grumbach shook himself gratefully. He was standing on the curb in front of the Grand Hotel, his back to the sun. It was nine o'clock. The broad König Strasse shone, the white stone of the palaces glared, the fountains glistened, and the coloring tree tops scintillated like the head-dress of an Indian prince. Hans was short but strongly built; a mild blue-eyed German, smooth-faced, ruddy-cheeked, white-haired, with a brown button of a nose. He drank his beer with the best of them, but it never got so far as his nose save from the outside. His suit was tight-fitting, but the checks were ample, and the watch-chain a little too heavy, and the huge garnet on his third finger was not in good taste. But what's the odds? Grumbach was satisfied, and it's one's own satisfaction that counts most.

Presently two police officers came along and went into the hotel. Grumbach turned with a sigh and followed them. Doubtless they had come to look over his passports. And this happened to be the case.

The senior officer unfolded the precious document.

"It is not yet viséed by your consul," said the officer.

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