"No," he said, "no. There's a directors' meeting of a trust company to- morrow which I have to attend. I'm not tired."
Victoria shook her head, smiling at him with serious eyes.
"I don't believe you know when you are tired," she declared. "I can't see the good of all these directors' meetings. Why don't you retire, and live the rest of your life in peace? You've got--money enough, and even if you haven't," she added, with the little quiver of earnestness that sometimes came into her voice, "we could sell this big house and go back to the farmhouse to live. We used to be so happy there."
He turned abruptly, and fixed upon her a steadfast, searching stare that held, nevertheless, a strange tenderness in it.
"You don't care for all this, do you, Victoria?" he demanded, waving his stick to indicate the domain of Fairview.
She laughed gently, and raised her eyes to the green roof of the needles.
"If we could only keep the pine grove!" she sighed. "Do you remember what good times we had in the farmhouse, when you and I used to go off for whole days together?"
"We don't do that any more," said Victoria. "It's only a little drive and a walk, now and then. And they seem to be growing--scarcer."