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Source global Wall Street Journal     time 2022-06-14 03:59:54
Typefacelarge in Small

tr chi ua nga

"I must be getting back to the Albany," said Bobby. "I'm sharing rooms with a chap, and he's an early bird." "Oh, let him wait," said Foulkes. "Come along for ten minutes to the Stage Club." They went to the Stage Club. Then, the place being empty and little amusement to be found there, they departed, Foulkes declaring his determination to see Bobby part of the way home. Passing a large entrance hall blazing with light and filled with the noise of a distant band, Foulkes stopped. "Come in here for a moment," said he. In they went. The place was gay—very gay. Little marble-topped tables stood about; French waiters running from table to table and serving guests—ladies and gentlemen. At a long glittering bar many men were standing, and a Red Hungarian Band was discoursing scarlet music. Foulkes took a table and ordered refreshment. The place was horrid. One could not tell exactly what there was about it that went counter to all the finer feelings and the sense of home, simplicity, and happiness. Bobby, rather depressed, felt this, but Foulkes, a man of tougher fibre, seemed quite happy. "What ails you, Ravenshaw?" asked Foulkes. "Nothing," said Bobby. "No, I won't have any more to drink. I've work to do——" Then he stopped and stared before him with eyes wide. "What is it now?" asked Foulkes. "Good Lord!" said Bobby. "Look at that chap at the bar!" "Which one?" "The one with the straw hat on the back of[Pg 107] his head. It can't be—but it is—it's the Relative." "The one you told me of that fired you out and cut you off with a shilling?" "Yes. Uncle Simon. No, it's not, it can't be. It is, though, in a straw hat." "And squiffy," said Foulkes. Bobby got up and, leaving the other, strolled to the bar casually. The man at the bar was toying with a glass of soda-water supplied to him on sufferance. Bobby got close to him. Yes, that was the right hand with the white scar—got when a young man "hunting"—and the seal ring. The last time Bobby had met Uncle Simon was in the office in Old Serjeants' Inn. Uncle Simon, seated at his desk-table with his back to the big John Tann safe, had been in bitter mood; not angry, but stern. Bobby seated before him, hat in hand, had offered no apologies or exculpations for his conduct with girls, for his stupid engagement, for his idleness. He had many bad faults, but he never denied them, nor did he seek to minimise them by explanations and lies. "I tried to float you," had said Uncle Simon, as though Bobby were a company. "I have failed. Well, I have done my duty, and I[Pg 108] clearly see that I will not be doing my duty by continuing as I have done; the allowance I have made you is ended. You will now have to swim for yourself. I should never have put money in your hands; I quite see that." "I can make my own living," said Bobby. "I am not without gratitude for what you have done——" "And a nice way you have shown your gratitude," said the other, "tangling yourself like that—gaming, frequenting bars." So the interview had ended. Frequenting bars!


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