The winter was gone, and the sun was coming back into the studio. But if the spring looked softer and loaded the chestnut trees of the avenue with flowers, he seemed to carry day by day all the freshness and gaiety of Gabielle. She herself understood nothing of the state of languor that made her work painful and deprived her of any desire to laugh. Her pink lips were now colorless and the shadow around her eyes made her cheeks look even paler.
Each of her companions believed that she knew the remedy that could ward off her withering, and that she did not lack advice:
“Drink on the sage and the little knapweed,” cried Felicite Damoure.
And then she enumerated so many plants to be attached to them, that the boss amused himself by making them repeat in the file, under the pretext of retaining the names. Bergeounette advised especially noise and movement. And Duretour, who did not like herbal teas, assured that only a fiancé could bring back the good health that Gabielle had lost.