"Well, then, London let it be. I have always had a mind to visit it," I answered, shortly, and thereupon our talk ended.


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A part of this was reaction as a business man. A part was recognition of all the intolerable things that the Thrid took as a matter of course. If Jorgenson had reacted solely as a business man he'd have swallowed it, departed on the next Rim Stars trading-ship—which would not have left any trade-goods behind—and left the Grand Panjandrum to realize what he had lost when no off-planet goods arrived on Thriddar. In time he'd speak and say and observe that he, out of his generosity, gave the loot back. Then the trading could resume. But Jorgenson didn't feel only like a business man this morning. He thought of Ganti, who was a particular case of everything he disliked on Thriddar.

Here the emigrants, after they have been medically examined, given a bath and their clothes disinfected, are detained until the time of embarkation. In company with United States Consul Slocum, from whom I received much valuable information, I visited the emigration building and spent a large part of one day looking into the arrangements and talking, through an interpreter, with emigrants from different parts of the country who were waiting there to embark.

After that we went along as usual, and except that we were more than commonly polite to each other, nobody would have suspected anything was the matter. While we had been friends we often had little tiffs; but after we became enemies—for that was what we inevitably became—we were politer than French dancing masters to each other. We didn't do the balloon-trapeze act everywhere. If we only made one-night stands, or if the stage was too small, or if the lessee of the house objected to it, we didn't have it, but still we had five or six weeks of it before Christmas, and Jenny never would witness it, but went and hid her face when it came off—so that only made it plainer that she liked one of us, but which one nobody could guess. It often occurred to me when we were rising slowly on that trapeze in front of the foot-lights, doing all kinds of monkey tricks while the people yelled and shouted, and the balloon was going up into the flies, that Ted could do me a mischief that nobody would know anything about after I was mashed and bruised out of shape by the fall, and I dare say he thought the same of me. Nothing happened, however, until one night—it was the very night before Christmas. Now, excepting the bad blood between the Valbella Brothers, I don't believe there was a man or a woman in that company who wasn't at peace and in good-will with the others that blessed Christmas Eve. Sam Stacker was such a kind, honest, soft-hearted but hard-headed old customer that he made quarreling unpopular and almost impossible. He had given us

"We've done a great deal more than that," exulted Hatcher. "Go to the supervisors, report to them. Pass on the word to the Central Masses probe. Maintain for the alien the pressure and temperature value he needs—"

Here was my moment, and I didn’t spare it, but jabbed the needle into the ball of yarn, if her ear did lie between them.

When he opened the letter he and Trixie were seated at their early breakfast in the veranda, attended by a greedy and devoted gathering of pets. Two well-disciplined fox terriers watched in quivering impatience for scraps of toast, obediently oblivious of a pair of Persian kittens that clawed and mewed and sprang in unmannerly fashion; a noisy green parrot in a dome-shaped cage; a monkey that jumped and jabbered on the back of the memsahib's chair; a tame squirrel that darted to and fro with bead-like eyes and feathery tail, even a greater trial to the dogs than the Persian kittens. Trixie worshipped animals and children; indeed, she had one day scandalised the general's wife by declaring, most immodestly as that lady considered, that she intended to have twenty babies, but, meanwhile, she could content herself with dogs and cats and monkeys.

It kept on, and on.


Bud slapped his leg an’ yelled with delight.

Mrs. Munro's voice trembled; she was almost at the end of her endurance, and she began to cry in the silent, helpless manner peculiar to women of her down-trodden type. All her life she had been sacrificed to somebody; first to her brother, who had been considered in every way before herself; then to her husband's mother and sisters, since the greater part of Mr. Munro's pay had gone home towards their support, and he had died before he could save anything for his wife and child; and then to Trixie, who had always had what she wanted as far as the widow's slender means would permit, and of late had been "such a handful," to quote Mrs. Greaves and various other of the mother's old friends.

target for all the guns they can bring to bear on her. The chances are three to one they’ll never come back again after making the circuit.”

1.“Oh yes, it would be white—a débutante. When I went to drawing-rooms,” said Mrs Durant, who had once, in the character of chaplainess to an Embassy, made her courtesy to her Majesty, “young ladies’ toilets were simpler than now. Frances will probably be in white satin, which, except for a wedding dress, is quite unsuitable, I think, for a girl.”



"Dear, happy, sweet Theo!"


But romance? Why is Fleet Street romantic? Well, as I have already said, it is because so many journalists themselves are romantic.... But I wonder if that really is the reason, and as I wonder I begin to think that though it is true one meets adventurous, talented and original people by the score in newspaper offices, yet, after all, it is not they who make journalism seem full of savour, of rich delight, of unexpectedness and excitement, of high romance. No; it is writing itself that is romantic: mere words and the colour and music of words; the smell of printers’ ink; the wet feel of a paper fresh from the press; the sounds of telephone bells and of machinery; the joy of expressing oneself; the lovely, great joy of signing one’s name to an article and knowing that in twenty-four hours it will have been read or glanced at by perhaps half-a-million people.... But it seems to me as I write that I am utterly failing to communicate to you who read the romantic nature of journalism. To you it is, perhaps, merely a slipshod profession, a profession in which there is something sordid and vulgar and as unromantic as Monday morning. To me a man who writes with distinction is the most interesting creature in the world: I 110cannot know too much about him; I can never tire of his talk. Actors bore me. So do politicians, lawyers, men of science, those who are professionally religious, doctors, musicians. But writers and financiers—especially Jewish financiers—are to me full of subtlety; their souls are elusive, and their minds are cunning past all reckoning. It is frequently said that the art of writing is possessed by most people. The art of writing correctly may be, but the “correct” writer is frequently not a writer at all, for he cannot compel people to read him. A writer without readers is not a writer; he is simply a man who murmurs to himself very laboriously. But the writer who can claim thousands of readers—I mean even such writers as Mr Charles Garvice and the lady who invented The Rosary—are in essentials more highly endowed with the true writer’s gifts than many mandarins who live cloistered in Oxford and Cambridge. And I say this in spite of the fact that I have never been able to read more than ten consecutive pages of any book of Mr Garvice’s that I have picked up, and that The Rosary seems to me a story of such amazing flapdoodleism that——


Not all of them, of course. A middle-aged architect with a note-book full of bits of gothic, and a reputation for suburban churches, or full of bits of “Queen Anne” and a connexion among villa builders, or an engineer


Deer Minnie: I hope you are well as this laves me at prisint. Its a long time since I seen yer swate face, but wid the wark of a family of six to do, besides helping Mr. James to cut the lons, Mr. John to plant the gardin, whitewashing of the chicken coop for Mrs. Wolley, I’m clane doon up whin nite cums. But theres anuther kind of wark I’m lately doing, and being its what mite be called mind wark me nerves ar beginning to thrubble me and whin annyone spakes to me at all I shtart upp like a thafe cort at a crime. Its minny a day since I wint to confesshun and me mind is deeply thrubbled wid the thort that the praste will refuse me absilooshun.


To my surprise, Alstrop met my glance with an eye neither puzzled nor resentful. A shadow seemed to be lifted from his honest face.

. . .