"What I want to know is, why you accepted such a silly case," said Victoria.
Austen looked quizzically into her upturned face, and she dropped her eyes.
"That's exactly what I should have asked myself,--after a while," he said.
She laughed with a delicious understanding of "after a while."
"I suppose you think me frightfully forward," she said, in a lowered voice, "inviting myself to drive and asking you such a question when I scarcely know you. But I just couldn't go on with Mrs. Pomfret,--she irritated me so,--and my front teeth are too valuable to drive with Humphrey Crewe."
Austen smiled, and secretly agreed with her.
"I should have offered, if I had dared," he said.
"Dared! I didn't know that was your failing. I don't believe you even thought of it."