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He was sorry he had accepted Pontellier's invitation. He was
growing old, and beginning to need rest and an imperturbed spirit.
He did not want the secrets of other lives thrust upon him.
"I hope it isn't Arobin," he muttered to himself as he walked.
"I hope to heaven it isn't Alcee Arobin."
Edna and her father had a warm, and almost violent dispute
upon the subject of her refusal to attend her sister's wedding.
Mr. Pontellier declined to interfere, to interpose either his
influence or his authority. He was following Doctor Mandelet's
advice, and letting her do as she liked. The Colonel reproached
his daughter for her lack of filial kindness and respect, her want
of sisterly affection and womanly consideration. His arguments
were labored and unconvincing. He doubted if Janet would accept
any excuse--forgetting that Edna had offered none. He doubted if
Janet would ever speak to her again, and he was sure Margaret would
Edna was glad to be rid of her father when he finally took
himself off with his wedding garments and his bridal gifts, with
his padded shoulders, his Bible reading, his "toddies" and
Mr. Pontellier followed him closely. He meant to stop at the
wedding on his way to New York and endeavor by every means which
money and love could devise to atone somewhat for Edna's
"You are too lenient, too lenient by far, Leonce," asserted
the Colonel. "Authority, coercion are what is needed. Put your
foot down good and hard; the only way to manage a wife. Take my
word for it."
The Colonel was perhaps unaware that he had coerced his own
wife into her grave. Mr. Pontellier had a vague suspicion of it
which he thought it needless to mention at that late day.