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Paste Jewels by John Kendrick Bangs
page 2 of 122 (01%)
They were very young, and possibly too amiable. Thaddeus was but
twenty-four and Bessie twenty-two when they twain, made one, walked
down the middle aisle of St. Peter's together.

Everybody remarked how amiable she looked even then; not that a
bride on her way out of church should look unamiable, of course, but
we all know how brides do look, as a rule, on such occasions--looks
difficult of analysis, but strangely suggestive of determined
timidity, if there can be such a quality expressed in the human
face. It is the natural expression of one who knows that she has
taken the most important step of her life, and, on turning to face
those who have been bidden to witness the ceremony, observes that
the sacredness of the occasion is somewhat marred by the presence in
church of the unbidden curiosity-seekers, who have come for much the
same reason as that which prompts them to go to the theatre--to
enjoy the spectacle. But Bessie's face showed nothing but that
intense amiability for which she had all her life long been noted;
and as for Thaddeus, he never ceased to smile from the moment he
turned and faced the congregation until the carriage door closed
upon him and his bride, and then, of course, he had to, his lips
being otherwise engaged. Indeed, Thaddeus's amiability was his
greatest vice. He had never been known to be ill-natured in his
life but once, and that was during the week that Bessie had kept him
in suspense while she was making up her mind not to say "No" to an
important proposition he had made--a proposition, by-the-way, which
resulted in this very ceremony, and was largely responsible for the
trials and tribulations which followed.

Thaddeus was rich--that is, he had an income and a vocation; a
charming little home was awaiting their coming, off in a convenient
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