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The California cousin of the Lyman T. Moultons -- a name too famous to be shorn -- -- stood apart from the perturbed group, her feet boyishly asunder, her head thrown back. Above her hung the thick white clusters of the acacia,[1] drooping abundantly, opaque and luminous in the soft masses of green, heavy with perfume. All Lyons seemed to have yielded itself to the intoxicating fragrance of its favorite tree.

The acacia of Europe is identical with the American locust.

In the Place Carnot, at least, there was not a murmur. The Moultons had hushed in thought their four variations on the aggressive American key, although perhaps insensible to the voluptuous offering of the grove. Mrs. Moulton, had her senses responded to the sweet and drowsy afternoon, would have resented the experience as immoral; and as it was her pale-blue gaze rested disapprovingly on the rapt figure of her husband's second cousin. The short skirt and the covert coat of ungraceful length, its low pockets always inviting the hands of its owner, had roused more than once her futile protest, and to-day they seemed to hang limp with a sense of incongruity beneath the half-closed eyes and expanded nostrils of the young Californian.

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