A man arrived at his friends' estate, the Murets d'Artus, to spend three weeks there. He was given Aunt Rose's room, where he had never slept before.
After examining the room and its furniture, he discovered a hidden compartment in a desk containing two packages of yellow letters tied with a blue ribbon. He read the letters, which were love letters between Aunt Rose and an unnamed man.
In the letters, Aunt Rose asked the man to return her letters to her, fearing that they might be found by others if either of them were to die.
Yes, it pains me deeply. I wondered whether, perhaps, you might not be feeling some regret at the bottom of your heart?
She explained that she would keep his letters safe in her desk, as she believed that if her husband were to find them after her death, he would simply burn them without causing a scandal. The man, on the other hand, expressed his sorrow at having to return her letters and assured her of his love.
Our love letters are our titles to beauty, grace, seduction, the intimate vanity of our womanhood; they are the treasures of our heart.
The man pondered over the craftiness and duplicity of women's souls, as he realized that Aunt Rose's seemingly severe and moral exterior hid a passionate and calculating nature. He thought about how many men must have discovered love letters after their wives' deaths and quietly destroyed them, maintaining their friendships with the women's lovers and keeping the secrets hidden.