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Other People's Money

Chapter I.16
It was not without mature thought that M. Costeclar had determined to withdraw,
despite M. Favoral's pressing overtures. However infatuated he might be with his
own merits, he had been compelled to surrender to evidence, and to
acknowledge that he had not exactly succeeded with Mlle. Gilberte. But he also
knew that he had the head of the house on his side; and he flattered himself that
he had produced an excellent impression upon the guests of the house.
"Therefore," had he said to himself, "if I leave first, they will sing my praise,
lecture the young person, and make her listen to reason."
He was not far from being right. Mme. Desclavettes had been completely
subjugated by the grand manners of this pretender; and M. Desclavettes did not
hesitate to affirm that he had rarely met any one who pleased him more.
The others, M. Chapelain and old Desormeaux, did not, doubtless, share this
optimism; but M. Costeclar's annual half-million obscured singularly their clear-
sightedness.
They thought perhaps, they had discovered in him some alarming features; but
they had full and entire confidence in their friend Favoral's prudent sagacity.
The particular and methodic cashier of the Mutual Credit was not apt to be
enthusiastic; and, if he opened the doors of his house to a young man, if he was
so anxious to have him for his son-in-law, he must evidently have taken ample
information.
Finally there are certain family matters from which sensible people keep away as
they would from the plague; and, on the question of marriage especially, he is a
bold man who would take side for or against.
 
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