Lord Loudwater was paying attention neither to his breakfast nor to the cat Melchisidec. Absorbed in a leader in The Times newspaper, now and again he tugged at his red-brown beard in order to quicken his comprehension of the weighty phrases of the leader-writer; now and again he made noises, chiefly with his nose, expressive of disgust. Lady Loudwater paid no attention to these noises. She did not even raise her eyes to her husband's face. She ate her breakfast with a thoughtful air, her brow puckered by a faint frown.