The next two months were delightful. Trina and McTeague saw each other
regularly, three times a week. The dentist went over to B Street Sunday and
Wednesday afternoons as usual; but on Fridays it was Trina who came to the
city. She spent the morning between nine and twelve o'clock down town, for the
most part in the cheap department stores, doing the weekly shopping for herself
and the family. At noon she took an uptown car and met McTeague at the corner
of Polk Street. The two lunched together at a small uptown hotel just around the
corner on Sutter Street. They were given a little room to themselves. Nothing
could have been more delicious. They had but to close the sliding door to shut
themselves off from the whole world.
Trina would arrive breathless from her raids upon the bargain counters, her pale
cheeks flushed, her hair blown about her face and into the corners of her lips, her
mother's net reticule stuffed to bursting. Once in their tiny private room, she
would drop into her chair with a little groan.
"Oh, MAC, I am so tired; I've just been all OVER town. Oh, it's good to sit down.
Just think, I had to stand up in the car all the way, after being on my feet the
whole blessed morning. Look here what I've bought. Just things and things. Look,
there's some dotted veiling I got for myself; see now, do you think it looks
pretty?"—she spread it over her face—"and I got a box of writing paper, and a
roll of crepe paper to make a lamp shade for the front parlor; and—what do you
suppose—I saw a pair of Nottingham lace curtains for FORTY-NINE CENTS;
isn't that cheap? and some chenille portieres for two and a half. Now what have
YOU been doing since I last saw you? Did Mr. Heise finally get up enough
courage to have his tooth pulled yet?" Trina took off her hat and veil and
rearranged her hair before the looking-glass.
"No, no—not yet. I went down to the sign painter's yesterday afternoon to see
about that big gold tooth for a sign. It costs too much; I can't get it yet a while.
There's two kinds, one German gilt and the other French gilt; but the German gilt
is no good."
McTeague sighed, and wagged his head. Even Trina and the five thousand
dollars could not make him forget this one unsatisfied longing.
At other times they would talk at length over their plans, while Trina sipped her
chocolate and McTeague devoured huge chunks of butterless bread. They were
to be married at the end of May, and the dentist already had his eye on a couple
of rooms, part of the suite of a bankrupt photographer. They were situated in the
flat, just back of his "Parlors," and he believed the photographer would sublet