what you are driving at; what mask do you mean?” said Mrs. Epanchin, irritably. She began to see pretty clearly though what it meant, and whom they referred to by the generally accepted title of “poor knight.” But what specially annoyed her was that the prince was looking so uncomfortable, and blushing like a ten-year-old child.
“Well, have you finished your silly joke?” she added, “and am I to be told what this ‘poor knight’ means, or is it a solemn secret which cannot be approached lightly?”
But they all laughed on.
“It’s simply that there is a Russian poem,” began Prince S., evidently anxious to change the conversation, “a strange thing, without