84 Ashes of Incense

packet in scarlet? I do not know, little Shadow of Allah.”

“Ah!” Little Shadow of Allah curled her rosebud mouth into the veriest speck of expres- sion and went Within the house, carrying the pale blue book carefully—so that a paper placed inside could not fall out.

Upstairs, in her white beribboned room, she found N’ala opening the persiennes after the sunset. “N’ala, has the new maid come?” she asked carelessly, putting away her writing things, while Simon stalked over to his cushion by the window.

“Yes, madame, she has come.”

“And is Amande ready to go P”

“Yes, madame, Amande is ready.”

“N’ala, does Amande weep?” Still caress- ingly the soft little voice questioned on.

“No, madame, Amande does not weep,” said the old Arab woman, always in monotonous repe- tition. “Amande has sat all day with a little silver ring in her hand. She does not weep, ma- dame.”

“Um-m. That is very interesting—I mean I am very glad of that, N’ala. You may go now— no, do not take away the incense jar. I wish to burn more.”