One evening her husband came home with an exultant air, holding a large envelope in his hand. "Here's something for you," he said.
Nevertheless he said: "Very well. I'll give you four hundred francs. But try and get a really nice dress with the money."
Madame Forestier went to her dressing-table, took up a large box, brought it to Madame Loisel, opened it, and said: "Choose, my dear."
The day of the party arrived. Madame Loisel was a success. She was the prettiest woman present, elegant, graceful, smiling, and quite above herself with happiness. All the men stared at her, inquired her name, and asked to be introduced to her. All the Under-Secretaries of State were eager to waltz with her. The Minister noticed her.