A Fiery Likeness

"Having a bit of religious ecstasy, are we, Thomas?" asked Madame Vereaux playfully.

"I beg your pardon," he said with a smile, "can't a fellow pray in peace?"

"Oh, surely you can't take it as seriously as all that."

"He would be right to," Mr. Gilby intervened solemnly. "Spiritual matters are nothing to scoff at, and the greater part of the world is unseen by our mortal eyes."

"Indeed," agreed Sir Thomas, "without religion, how should we know right from wrong?"

"I find that my intuition suffices," Madame Vereaux answered, "and besides, everyone makes mistakes now and again, be he barkeep or clergyman. Why pay it so much mind when there's nothing to be done about it?"

"Because the effort matters as much as - or more than - the end result; and should the judgment that is placed upon us be without mercy, then our lives will have been lived for naught."


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