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had their offices in a large old house
in Bedford-square. The whole of the
ground-floor was used for offices. In the
upper part of the house lived the family
of the junior partner.

The chief reason for selecting the locality
of the officeswhich did not sound, Mr.
Lovegrove said, an altogether "professional"
addresswas that he might enjoy
the advantage of residing at his place of
business; of being, as he was fond of
mentioning, "on the spot."

"That is exactly what I don't want,"
said Mr. Frost. And accordingly he
inhabited a house at Bayswater.

But the Lovegroves, especially the female
Lovegroves, declared in family conclave
that Mr. Frost lived at Bayswater rather
than at Bedford-square, because Mrs. Frost
deemed Bedford-square vulgar. She was
reported to have asked where it was, with
a vague air of wonder, as of an inquirer
into the geography of Central Africa. And
Augustus Lovegrove, junior, the only son of
the family, gave an imitation of Mrs. Frost
setting out to visit her husband's office,
furnished with a sandwich-case and a flask of
sherry, as though for a long journey; and
mimicked the tone of fashionable boredom
in which she asked the coachman where one
changed horses to go to Bedford-square. But
that, said his sisters, was only Gus's fun.

In fact, there was a suppressed, but not
the less deadly, feud between the houses of
Frost and Lovegrove on all social points.
In their business relations the two partners
seldom jarred.

Mr. Frost was a much cleverer man
than Mr. Lovegrove. He was also the
better educated of the two, and nature had
gifted him with a commanding person and
an impressive address.

Mr. Lovegrove was a common-place
individual. He said of himself that he had
a great power of sticking to business: and
he said truly. Mr. Frost entirely appreciated
his partner's solid and unobtrusive
merits. He declared Lovegrove to be "a
thoroughly safe dependable fellow." And the
flavour of patronage in his approbation was
in no degree distasteful to Mr. Lovegrove.

In the office, their respective qualities
and acquirements were the complement of
each other; and they agreed admirably.
Out of the office, their views were so
dissimilar as to be antagonistic.

Mr. Lovegrove was a very devout high
churchman, and shook his head gravely
over Mr. Frost's want of orthodoxy. Indeed,
to describe Mr. Frost's opinions as
unorthodox was to characterise them with
undue mildness. Mr. Frost was a
confirmed sceptic, and his scepticism was
nearly allied to cynicism.

There is a homely illustration immortalised
by the pen of a great modern writer,
which may, perhaps, convey an idea of the
state of Mr. Frost's mind.

In one of that great writer's well-known
pages, political reformers are warned when
they empty the dirty water out of the tub,
not to send the baby whose ablutions have
been made in it floating down the kennel
likewise. Get rid of the dirty water by all
means: butsave the baby!

Now Mr. Frost, it was to be feared, had
not saved the baby.

Then the women of the two families did