- Project Runeberg -  The story of San Michele /
189

(1929) [MARC] Author: Axel Munthe - Tema: Medicine
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through the bank. She herself had never seen
the child since then except when watching her
from the street corner every Thursday when the
girls were taken out for their afternoon walk.
I said I was very worried about the child, that
I would let her know if she got worse. She did
not want to give me her address, she begged me
to let her wait for me in the street every evening
for news. For a week I found her there trembling
with anxiety. I had to tell her the child was
getting worse, I knew well it was out of the
question to make this wretched prostitute see
her dying child, all I could do was to promise
her to let her know when the end was near,
whereupon she consented at last to give me her
address. Late the next evening I drove to her
address in a street of evil repute, behind the
Opéra Comique. The cabman smiled significantly
at me and suggested he should come back to
fetch me in an hour. I said a quarter of an
hour would do. After a rapid scrutiny by the
matron of the establishment, I was admitted to
the presence of a dozen half-naked ladies in
short tunics of red, yellow or green muslin.
Would I make my choice? I said my choice
was made, I wanted Mademoiselle Flopette. The
matron was very sorry, Mademoiselle Flopette
had not yet come down, she had of late been
very negligent of her duties, she was still dressing
in her bedroom. I asked to be taken there at
once. It was twenty francs payable in advance
and a souvenir à discretion to Flopette if I was
satisfied with her, which I was sure to be, she
was une fille charmante, prête à tout and very

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