Arms and the Woman (Chapter 4, page 1 of 9)


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Chapter 4

I shall tell Hillars's story as he told it. He said: Last August I went to B----.

My mission was important and took me to
the British Legation, where I am well known. I was most cordially
invited to attend a ball to be given the next evening. The notables of
the court were there. For a few moments the King let his sun shine on
the assemblage. It was a brilliant spectacle. At midnight I saw for
the first time a remarkably beautiful woman. I was looking well myself
that night. All women like to see broad shoulders in a man. It
suggests strength--something they have not. Several times this young
woman's eyes met mine. Somehow, mine were always first to fall. There
was a magnetism in hers mine could not withstand. Later, an attache
came to me and said that he wished to present me to her Serene Highness
the Princess Hildegarde of--let us call it Hohenphalia. He whispered
that she had commanded the introduction. I expected to see some
red-faced dowager who wanted to ask me about my country and bore me
with her guttural accents. To my intense pleasure, I found myself at
the side of the beauty whom I had been admiring. There was a humorous
light in her eyes as she put some questions to me.

"Do you speak German?" she asked in that language.

"Poorly, your Highness," I answered.

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