Dorset had apparently shown marked interest in the girl, and this interest might be used to cruel advantage in his wife’s struggle for rehabilitation.
Revenge and rehabilitation might be hers at a stroke—there was something dazzling in the completeness of the opportunity.
She knew that Carry Fisher was right: that an opportune absence might be the first step toward rehabilitation, and that, at any rate, to linger on in town out of season was a fatal admission of defeat.
Lily did not need to be told that the Duchess’s championship was not the best road to social rehabilitation, and as she was besides aware that her noble defender might at any moment drop her in favour of a new PROTEGEE, she reluctantly decided to return to America.
She saw that the whole weary work of rehabilitation must begin again, and against far greater odds, if Bertha Dorset should succeed in breaking up her friendship with the Gormers; and her longing for shelter and security was intensified by the passionate desire to triumph over Bertha, as only wealth and predominance could triumph over her.
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She has been working to rehabilitate her reputation.