Geneviève looked up quickly. "Then you think I ought to take the veil?" In truth it is from among the young hearts that bleed and suffer, like Geneviève’s, that convents gain their best and most willing recruits. "Willingly, most willingly. But not until Mademoiselle has need of me no longer."
"My need must yield to higher claims. And I own that it would be a joy to me to give back to God the best and dearest gift He has given me in these sad later years. But we will do nothing rashly or in haste. Meanwhile believe me, dear child, that I can feel for thy sorrow. Renunciation, however clearly we may see the duty of it, can never be anything but pain, bitter pain. Yet it is in such pain that Christ draws near to us, and gives us the foretaste of His joy."
"I know it, Mademoiselle," whispered the pale lips of Geneviève. "And now go and pray for thyself and for me. I also will pray for thee. Kiss me, dear child. So — once more — lip to lip and heart to heart. God bless thee! God make thee in very truth the saint I dreamed of being, but am not, and shall never be."