"What is it you wish, Colonel? I am at your service.
" "I have now quite settled in my new rooms, Count" (Berg said this with perfect conviction that this information could not but be agreeable), "and so I wish to arrange just a small party for my own and my wife's friends.
" (He smiled still more pleasantly.
) "I wished to ask the countess and you to do me the honor of coming to tea and to supper.
" Only Countess Helene, considering the society of such people as the Bergs beneath her, could be cruel enough to refuse such an invitation.

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