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The Kingdom of the Blind

Chapter 3
A few rays of fugitive sunshine were brightening Piccadilly when Geraldine and her
escort left the Ritz. The momentary depression occasioned by the dramatic little episode
of a few minutes ago, seemed already to have passed from the girl's manner. She walked
on, humming to herself. As they paused to cross the road, she glanced as though
involuntarily at her companion. His dark morning clothes and rather abstracted air
created an atmosphere of sombreness about him of which she was suddenly conscious.
"Hugh, why don't you wear uniform in town?" she asked.
"Why should I?" he replied. "After all, I am not really a fighting man, you see."
"It's so becoming," she sighed.
He seemed to catch the reminiscent flash in her eyes as she looked down the street, and a
shadow of foreboding clouded his mind.
"You found Captain Granet interesting?"
"Very," she assented heartily. "I think he is delightful, don't you?"
"He certainly seems to be a most attractive type of young man," Thomson admitted.
"And how wonderful to have had such adventures!" she continued. "Life has become so
strange, though, during the last few months. To think that the only time I ever saw him
before was at a polo match, and to-day we sit side by side in a restaurant, and, although
he won't speak of them, one knows that he has had all manner of marvellous adventures.
He was one of those who went straight from the playing fields to look for glory, wasn't
he, Hugh? He made a hundred and thirty-two for Middlesex the day before the war was
declared."
"That's the type of young soldier who's going to carry us through, if any one can," Major
Thomson agreed cheerfully.
She suddenly clutched at his arm.
"Hugh," she exclaimed, pointing to a placard which a newsboy was carrying, "that is the
one thing I cannot bear, the one thing which I think if I were a man would turn me into a
savage!"
They both paused and read the headlines--
PASSENGER STEAMER TORPEDOED WITHOUT WARNING IN THE IRISH SEA.
TWENTY-TWO LIVES LOST.
 
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