When it rained or snowed, Charles would direct his horse over the shortcuts... every night he would come home to a glowing fire, the table set, the furniture arranged comfortably, and a charming woman, neatly dressed, smelling so fresh you wondered where the fragrance came from and whether it wasn't her skin lending the scent to her petticoat.She charmed him by a number of elegant gestures. Sometimes it was a new way of cutting paper sconces for the candles, a flounce that she had changed on her dress, or the extraordinary name of some simple dish the maid had spoiled but that Charles swallowed with pleasure down to the bitter end. In Rouen she saw some women wearing charms on their watches; she bought charms. She wanted two large vases of blue glass on her fireplace, and awhile later, an ivory work box with a vermeil thimble. The less Charles understood these elegant touches, the more he responded to their attraction. They added something to his sensual pleasures and to the sweetness of his home. it was as if gold dust were being spread all along the narrow path of his life."