When a Man Marries (Chapter 1, page 2 of 7)


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Chapter 1

The trouble was, I think, that no one took Jim seriously. His ambition
in life was to be taken seriously, but people steadily refused to. His
art was a huge joke--except to himself. If he asked people to dinner,
every one expected a frolic. When he married Bella Knowles, people
chuckled at the wedding, and considered it the wildest prank of Jimmy's
career, although Jim himself seemed to take it awfully hard.

We had all known them both for years. I went to Farmington with Bella,
and Anne Brown was her matron of honor when she married Jim. My first
winter out, Jimmy had paid me a lot of attention. He painted my portrait
in oils and had a studio tea to exhibit it. It was a very nice picture,
but it did not look like me, so I stayed away from the exhibition. Jim
asked me to. He said he was not a photographer, and that anyhow the rest
of my features called for the nose he had given me, and that all the
Greuze women have long necks. I have not.

After I had refused Jim twice he met Bella at a camp in the Adirondacks
and when he came back he came at once to see me. He seemed to think I
would be sorry to lose him, and he blundered over the telling for twenty
minutes. Of course, no woman likes to lose a lover, no matter what she
may say about it, but Jim had been getting on my nerves for some time,
and I was much calmer than he expected me to be.

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