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Cinderella jane


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Title:CinderellaJane
Author:MarjorieBentonCooke
ReleaseDate:September6,2010[eBook#33657]
Language:English
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JANE***

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CINDERELLAJANE
by


MARJORIEBENTONCOOKE

CINDERELLAJANE


BooksbytheSameAuthor
BAMBI
DR.DAVID
THEDUALALLIANCE
THEGIRLWHOLIVEDINTHEWOODS


CinderellaJane


ByMARJORIEBENTONCOOKE
Authorof"Bambi,""TheGirlWhoLivedInTheWoods,"Etc.
WITHFRONTISPIECEINCOLORS

A.L.BURTCOMPANY
Publishers
NewYork
PublishedbyArrangementwithDOUBLEDAY,PAGE&COMPANY

Copyright,1917,by
DOUBLEDAY,PAGE&COMPANY



CINDERELLAJANE
CINDERELLAJANE


CONTENTS
CHAPTERI
CHAPTERII
CHAPTERIII
CHAPTERIV
CHAPTERV
CHAPTERVI
CHAPTERVII
CHAPTERVIII
CHAPTERIX
CHAPTERX
CHAPTERXI
CHAPTERXII
CHAPTERXIII
CHAPTERXIV
CHAPTERXV
CHAPTERXVI
CHAPTERXVII
CHAPTERXVIII
CHAPTERXIX
CHAPTERXX
CHAPTERXXI
CHAPTERXXII
CHAPTERXXIII
CHAPTERXXIV
CHAPTERXXV
CHAPTERXXVI
CHAPTERXXVII
CHAPTERXXVIII
CHAPTERXXIX


CHAPTERXXX
CHAPTERXXXI
CHAPTERXXXII
CHAPTERXXXIII
CHAPTERXXXIV
CHAPTERXXXV


CHAPTERI
It was the Pageant of the Prophets which gave Jerry Paxton his first chance.
Therewereseverallinksintheprimrosechainoffortunewhichledhimfromthe
first opportunity to the last. The first and most important may be said to have
been Mrs. Abercrombie Brendon, who opened her house for a portrait
exhibition.Shehadaneyeformenaswellasforart,sowhenhandsomeJerry
appeared, she annexed him. The second link was Jerry's sense of dramatic
values, whichmade himplayuptothissomewhatelderlysiren.Thethird was
thegods,whohadeversmiledonJerryPaxton.
Itwasaseasonwhenallthesocietyclubsandleagueswerespendingthemselves
andtheirmoneyinlavishspectaclesofallkinds.TherewereBallsoftheGods
andPaganRouts,PersianBalletsandGreekFriezes,personifiedbytheverybest
people,andsomeofthesecondbest.
Mrs.AbercrombieBrendon,whowassociallyelect,headedaneagerandearnest
group of ladies of her set, who desired to outdo all previous efforts in a
mammoth affair, which would provide woollen underwear for the Belgians, or
somethingequallypracticalandunpoetic.Shehappenedtomentionherdilemma
to Jerry, as they sat at tea in Mrs. Brendon's drawing-room a week or so after
theirfirstmeeting.
"Wecan'tseemtothinkofanythingwhichhasnotbeendone,"shecomplained.
"Wehavepeopletobeinthething,peopletoproduceit,peopletocometoseeit,
andallweneedis——"
"Brains,"saidJerrydaringly.
"Haveyouany?"
"Ihaveacoupleoflobes."
"Haveyouthemwithyou?"
"Thereisatleastoneingoodworkingorder,andatyourdisposal,"helaughed.
"Thinkofsomethingnewforustodo."


"IfIsupplytheidea,willyoumakemedirector?"
"We'llmakeyouprimeminister,courtchamberlain,anythingyoulike!"
"Good.Thethingwillbecalledthe'PageantoftheProphets.'"
"Whatprophets?"
"TheoldBiblicalones,butwe'lldrawontheentireBibleforourcharacters.We
willbuildapalacethroneroom,PontiusPilate'sperhaps,orKingHerod's,very
gorgeous and beautiful. We can have groups, and friezes, and scenes; the
costuminghasinfinitepossibilities.Wecanhavemusicandsingingpilgrims.We
canhavedancingSalome,withherdrippinghead.Oh!itwillbeonemagnificent
spectacle!"
"Youareagenius!"criedMrs.Brendon.
"Granted.Thenwhat?"
"Wewillhaveyoudoitall.Youshalldesignthewholething,anddirectit.Draw
yourplansandsubmityourterms.Youareelectedrightnow."
"Youareinearnest?"
"Nevermoreso."
"Thenacceptmyservicesasapoorreturnforyourexcellenttea."
"Nonsense.Thatisaprettyspeech,butyouhavetoearnyourownliving,don't
you?"
"Alas,yes."
"Then there is no reason why you should donate time and brains for nothing.
Thisisabusinessproposition.Willyoutakeit?"
"Withbothhandsandagratefulheart."
"You'llhavetousebothlobesofthatboastedbrain,"shelaughed."WhatshallI
be?"
"Herodias, beautiful wife of King Herod," said Jerry without hesitation. "We'll
giveyouacostumethatwilldazzle'em!"
"Youshallpaintmeinit."


"Delighted."
"Thishascertainlybeenaluckydayforme.I'llcallthedirectorsinthemorning,
Mr. Paxton. We'll make our plans while you work out yours. Then we'll meet
withyou,andappointourcommitteesatonce.Canyoubeginrightaway?"
"IfIcanpostponesomeportraitsittings.Ishalldomybest."
"Iftheyarewomensittersputtheminthepageant,thatwillkeepthembusy.We
musthaveyouatonce."
"That's an idea. Au revoir. You have given me an eventful afternoon. My
thanks."
Ashewalkeddowntheavenuetowardhisstudio,Jerry'smindwasinawhirl.
The tap of his feet on the sidewalk made a time: "If I put this through, I've
arrived.IfIputthisthrough,I'vearrived."Itwasduskwhenheclimbedtohis
quartersandhehummedashewent.Hethrewopenthedoorandrushedin.The
bigroomwasdark,saveinthefarcorner,wherealampwaslit,withtheshade
off, so that an ugly glare lighted the face of the woman who sat beside it,
mendingsocks.
"Ah,MissJaneJudd,isthatyou?"
"Goodafternoon,"sheanswered,notlookingup.
Jerrysanggailyashedumpedhisbelongingsonthedivan.Helitacigarette,and
laughedaloudinvoluntarily.
"Haveyoueverhaddeliriumtremens,MissJudd?"hedemanded.Shelookedup
withoutreply."I'vegotacaserightnow."
Shewentonwithherwork.Heglancedather,markedhowtheshadowfromthe
lamp accentuated the bold modelling of her face, bringing out its mask-like
quality.
"Isupposeyoudon'tdealmuchinemotions,"headded.
Sheneithersmilednoranswered.Helaughedattheideahimself.
"Jane Judd, conversationally, you are about as satisfactory as 'a bloomin' idol
madeofmud.'"
"Youdonotengagemetotalk,"sheanswered,inalowratherdullvoice."You


engagemetowork."
"SoIdo,butsomedayIamgoingtopayyoudoubleratesforyourthoughts.A
silentwomanisamenace.I'mafraidofyou."
Arat-a-tat-tatcameonthedoor.
"Comein,"calledJerrygaily.
Anodd,boyish-lookinggirlstuckinherhead.
"Athome,Jerry?What'sthecelebration?"
"I'vegotajob,Bobsie,abig,cash-in-handkindofajob,andI'mtryingtoraisea
sparkofhumanresponseinthefrozenbuzzumofJaneJudd."
"Oh,isthisyourJaneday?Hello,Jane,"sheadded,seatingherselfcomfortably.
"Goahead,Jerry,let'shear."
He told her the story, in some detail, with touches of his own. He was so
boyishlyelatedoveritthatshewasfiredwithsomeofhisenthusiasm.
"Butlookhere,Jerrymander,howaboutthebigmuraldesigns?Howaboutmy
portrait?Thispageantwon'tgetyouanywhere."
"Won'tit?YoushouldhaveheardmetelltheAbercrombieBrendonthatIwould
try my best to put off my portrait sitters. You, my dear Bobs, are my portrait
sitters."
"It will ruin your winter's work. They'll pick your brains, that crowd, and take
yourtime,andyoucanwhistleforyourmoney."
"Iwasn'tinkindergartenyesterday,Bobs.Iknowathingortwoaboutthedear
rich.Theywillpay-as-we-go,onegoodbigdepositdowninadvance."
"Getyoualloutoftheworkspirit—makeyouyearnforthefleshpots."
"Well,Bobs,Ineverdidchooseadietoffigsandthistles."
"That'sjustthetroublewithyou.It'snipandtuckallthetimebetweentheartist
andthesenses,Jerry.Thatuptowncrowdcanruinyouforgood."
"Dear old Bobs! If they ruin me, I'll come to you for a scourge. Let's go to
Buffanti'sforacelebration.We'llgetChatandJinnyforafoursome,what?Are


theChatfieldsathometo-day,Jane?"headded.
"Yes;Iwastherethismorning,"sheanswered.
"Comeon,oldwailingbanshee!"hecried.
"Allright;butIdon'tlikeit,justthesame.Thisverynightmaymarkthegrave
ofJeromePaxton,painter."
"Well,thinkupsomejollyepitaphandwe'llsingitinourcups.Don'tdree,Bobs;
you'reasbadasJane."
Athismentionofher,theybothglancedatthesilentbentfigure,soindifferentto
theirpresence.
"Timetocloseup,MissJudd;we'reofftodinner,"saidJerry.
She quietly rose and put away the mended things. She set things to rights, as
noiselessasawraith.Theothertwowentontalkingandlaughing,untilshecame
towardtheminherhatandcoat.
"WhatdoIoweyou?"Jerryasked.
"Justforto-day."
"Ihaven'tanychange.Canyouletitgountilnexttime?"
"No,"shesaidsimply.
"Well,oldShylock,here'sfive.Consideryourselfpaidaslongasthatlasts."
"Idon'twishtodothat.I'llbringyouchange."
"Botheryou,JaneJudd;whatdifferencedoesitmakewhetheryougetitallat
once,orindriblets?"
"Here,Jerry,I'vegotiteven.Youoweme,"Bobssaid.
"Allright;muchobliged."
Janehesitatedamoment,thentookitwithabow,andwenttothedoor.
"Good-night,JaneJudd,"saidBobs.
"Good-night,"thewomanansweredmechanically.


"Night,"saidJerry,searchingforcigarettesamonghisimpedimenta.
"Queercreature,that,"Bobsmused.
"What'sthat?"
"JaneJudd.Whatdoyousupposeshethinksofusall?"
"Godknows,andIcareaslittleasHedoes."
"Icare.I'dliketoknowher.She'slikesteel,clean-cut,shining,efficient,silent,
unbreakable."
"Isshe?I'venevernoticed,"saidJerryindifferently.
"Sheknowsalloursecrets,oureconomies,ourloves,andhates.Shemendsus
up,keepsusinorder.JaneJuddisthelawandorderofourset.Sheglidesamong
us,andwesayeverythingweknowbeforeher,asifshewereawall."
"Gog and Magog! Do I have to listen to you ramble on about Jane Judd? She
interestsmeaboutasmuchasaWheelerandWilsonsewingmachine.Comeon
todinner."
Bobsroseandstretchedherselfluxuriously,withayawn.
"Man is the most incomprehensible animal evolved from protoplasm," she
remarked.
"Thatremarkdoesn'tseemtohaveanypoint,Bobs,butIsupposeithas."
"Thanks.Fromnowon,IsupposeonlyBibleallusionswillhavepointtoyou."
"Well,there'snothingBiblicalaboutJaneJudd."
"Humph!Shemightbethedimandvastyvoidoutofwhichcreationsprang."
"GoodLord!"criedJerry,turningoutthelight.Hetookherbytheelbowandled
herout,closingthedooronthatconversation.


CHAPTERII
Jane Judd, in her old brown coat and a hat of many seasons flown, walked
slowly from Macdougal Alley toward the model tenement house where she
shared a flat with a family by the name of Biggs, and had what is known as
"light housekeeping privileges." The English of this elegant phrase was, that,
beforeoraftertheBiggsfamilyhaddisposedofitsmeals,Janecouldslipinto
thekitchenandprepareherrepast.Shedislikedthearrangementintensely,buton
thewholeshepreferredittoanyboarding-housewhichshecouldafford.
No matter how tired she was after her day's work in the various studios, she
alwaysenjoyedthiswalkhome,withthemistylights,thefar-distantvistaofthe
sky at the street ends. She speculated about the people she passed; sometimes
shestoppedtowatchthechildrenshoutingandplayinginthestreets.Shenever
spoketothembutsheknewmanyofthembysight.
Itwasinsomesuchwayshewatchedtheartistfolkwhogaveheremployment.
She wondered about them; sometimes behind her mask she laughed at their
childishness.
JaneJudd'shistoryuptothispointhasnomoredramaticinterestthanthehistory
of any drab woman of twenty-eight, picked out at random from the army of
workwomenwhichmarchesdailytoandfromthefactoriesandstores.
ShehadlivedinWarburton,asmallNewJerseytown,untilshewastwenty-two,
keepinghouseforherfather,whohadagrocerystore.Hewasheronlyrelation.
When hedied shesoldthestoreandcametoNewYorktomakealiving.She
was trained for nothing. She had had a High School education, which left her
withatasteforbooksandaconsumingambitiontowritethem.Beingadumb
creatureatbest,shehadneverspokenofthisdreamtoahumansoul,excepther
mother.Thetownpaperhadpublishedseveralofherstories,signedwithapen
name,andshesecretlycherishedtheideathatshehadtalent.
Sowhenherreleasecame,shedidassomanygirlsdothesedays,sheputher
littleallintoherpocketbookandcametothebigtowntograpplewithsuccess.
She applied at newspaper offices, at first, with her village paper clippings as
justification. She admitted to such editors as she saw that she had no nose for
news, but she liked to write stories, and thought maybe she could do special


stuff.Shewasshyandfrightened.Nobodywantedher.
Shefoundacheaproomandgaveherselfamonthinwhichtowriteshortstories.
With one new one, and two old ones worked over, she tried the magazines. It
wasawearyroundwithrejectionateverypoint,whilethereservesinherbank
grewsmallerandsmaller.Duringthewholemonthshenevertalkedtoanyone,
andsheknewalonelinessasbitteraspain.
Finally,onedayaneditorofamagazinelethercomeintohisoffice.Helooked
atherkeenly.
"MissJudd,"hebegan,"I'vereadthesestoriesofyoursandIwanttogiveyoua
bitofadvice.Areyoutryingtomakealivingoutofthiskindofthing?"
"Yes,sir."
"Canyoudoanythingelsetosupportyourself?"
"Idon'tknow."
"Wherehaveyoulived?"
Janetoldhim.
"You'realoneintheworld?"
"Yes."
"Unmarried?"
"Yes."
"MayItellyouquitefranklyhowIfeelaboutyourcase?"
"Iwishyouwould."
"You make the common mistake of thinking that anybody can write. Now,
putting words together is not writing; making fine sentences is not writing;
elaborating striking plots is not writing. Of all the arts, literature is the most
exacting mistress. With some idea of the technique of painting, or music,
coupledwithasurfacebrilliance,youmaypaintorsingorplay.Withevenless
equipment, you may act; but to write, you must have lived, you must have
sufferedandknownjoy;youmustbeabletoanalyzepeople,tounderstandtheir
motives, to love them. To write, you must have ideas and emotions. It is only


when the sources of your own being run deep that you can bring up waters of
refreshmentforothers."
Hestoppedtolookatthegirl,whomhehadalmostforgotten.Herfacestartled
him with its eagerness. Her eyes were shining and he found himself
commenting,subconsciously:"Why,sheisn'tsoplain."
"Yes,pleasegoon,"shebegged.
"Well,grantedthatyouhavelearnedsomethingofthemotives,thepassions,the
sorrowsthatrackushumans,thenyoumustalsohaveyourmediumincontrol.
Haveyoueverthoughtaboutwords,howwonderfultheyare,howprecious?"
Sheshookherhead.
"Most people fail to. We think of the hackneyed old phrases we use in the
mechanicsofliving,butwordsarelikelittlecreaturesthatmarchandfightand
sing.Theyarelikeextrahands,andbrains.Thinkofthepowerofthem!Allthe
passions wait on them; they bring despair, hope, courage, love; they are the
goldenexchangegrantedtoman.Untilyougetthissenseofthechoiceness,the
fragility,thepowerofwords,youarenotreadytotranscribeyourthoughts."
"ButhowcanIlearnaboutwords?"
"Read the best books, get the feel of them. Study style, add words to your
possessionasamiseraddscoins.Haveyoueverstudiedcomposition?"
"AlittleinHighSchool."
"Frankly,Idoubtifyoucaneverwrite.Iseenogleamofagiftinthesethings
youhavebroughtme.Theyaresentimentalandsilly.Butifyoushouldwantto
learnsomethingaboutthisgreatart——"
"Oh,Ido,"saidJaneearnestly.
"Verywell,Iwillgiveyoualistofbookstobeginwith.Youmustgetaposition
sothatyoucansupportyourself,thenstudywhenyoucan.Writeallthetime;get
facility with words, then tear it up. Don't try to sell things. Begin to watch
people;getabreastofevents.Readthepapersandthemagazinesinthelibrary.
ReadShakespeare,Fielding,Dickens,Thackeray,Bunyan,Meredith,Barrie,and
Galsworthy.YoumighteventryShaw."
"Oh,Iwill!"criedJane.


Helaughed.
"I don't often inflict an hour's lecture upon unprotected young women, Miss
Judd."
"Ican'ttellyouhowgratefulIam.ThisisjustwhatIneeded."
"You get to work. When you are absolutely confident that you have got
somethinggood,comeandseemeagain."
"Thankyou,Iwill."
Shewentoutinadaze.Thistalkwastochangethewholecourseofherlife,and
sheknewit.Itwascharacteristicofherthatshebeganatonce.Sheansweredan
advertisement in the paper, inserted by a man named Jerome Paxton, who
wantedareliablewomantomendhisclothesanddolightworkaboutthestudio.
Sheappliedandheengagedher.
Thatwassixyearsago.Fromthatsmallbeginningshehadworkedupaclientele
among the artists of the district, which kept her busy every day. She mended
theirclothes,cleanedtheirstudios,cookedamealifnecessary,became,inshort,
aninstitutioninthecolony.AsJerryPaxtonsaid;"JaneJuddcanmendanything
fromaleakinapipetoabrokenheart."
This was her life by day. Her real life began when the day ended. On this
particularnight,asonathousandpreviousnights,sheboughthersupperatthe
butcher's and the grocer's, and climbed the many stairs to her home. As she
struckamatchtolightthegas,therewasalightthudonthefloorandapurring.
"Thatyou,Milly?"sheasked.
The big cat purred loudly and rubbed against her skirt. She took her up and
pettedherabitbeforeshesomuchaslaidoffherthings.
"I've got a piece of fish for you," she added as she put her coat and hat away.
Milly, whose full name was Militant, constituted her entire family, and it was
Jane'shabittotalktohercontinually.
"We'llhurryintothekitchenbeforeMrs.Biggsgetshometo-nightandgetour
supperoutoftheway,"shesaidpresently,andledthewaydownthenarrowhall,
thecatatherheels.Shemadeherpreparationsquicklyanddeftly.BillyBiggs,
agedeight,appearedasshewascooking.


"Hello,MissJudd."
"Hello,Billy."
Hewasaverydirtyandaverydulllittleboy,whoworehismouthopen,andwas
mentally developed as far as his adenoids would permit. Jane tried to be
interestedinhim,butfailed.
"WishtIhadapieceofbreadan'butter."
"Allright,hereitis.Yourmotherwillbein,presently."
"Oursupperain'tasgoodasyours."
This conversation took place almost every night. As soon as she could she
carriedeverythingintoherroom.ThensheandMillysatdowntothefunctionof
dinner.Millysatonahighchairatonesideofthesewingtable,Janeattheother.
"Milly,you'reagood,steadyfriend,butIjustachetohavesomebodytalkback
tometo-night.IwonderhowitwouldfeeltogotoBuffanti'swithpeopleyou
liked,totalk,andeatgoodfoodandlistentomusic."
Milly had no comments to make on the subject, except to claw her plate. Jane
putamorseloffoodthere,whichdisappeared.
"I'llpretendIwentwiththem,andputitintothestoryto-night.Iknowhowthey
talk,Milly,andhowtheythink,andhowtheyact,butIwantthemtoknowhow
Ithinkandtalkandact.I'msickofbeingalone,Iwantsomebody——"
She broke off and hid her face in her hands. Milly scratched her plate
significantly.Itistheroutineoflifewhichhelpsusthroughthetragedy,always.
AtMilly'spracticalreminder,Janereplenishedherplatewiththescrapingsfrom
herown,rose,carriedherdishestothesink,washedthem,andputthemaway.
Then she locked her door, got out her pen and her blank book, lit the student
lamp, and sat down at her table. Milly sprang into her favourite chair and the
pleasuretimeofthedaycametobothofthem.Thepurrandthescratchofthe
penlastedfarintothenight.


CHAPTERIII
Truetoherword,Mrs.AbercrombieBrendonpresentedJerryandhisideatoher
committee, and they appointed him Minister Extraordinary to the whole affair.
Hewastodesignthesettingforthepageantandsuchcostumesashehadtimeto
do.Hewastoarrangeanddirectthetableaux.
There was a slight hitch in affairs, when Jerry presented his terms, but he was
preparedforthat.Mrs.Brendonsoundedhimonareduction,buthestoodfirm,
assuring her that he must be free to put all his heart and brain at their service.
Thiswasquiteimpossibleunlesshegaveupallotherworkforthetimebeing.If
that was not entirely satisfactory to them, he would gladly withdraw. The
interruptiontohisworkwasofconsiderablemoment.Mrs.Brendoncarriedthis
answer back to the committee and they confirmed the amount, complaining
bitterly.
Jerrywaspreparedforthisincident.Healsoknewthatintheendtheywouldpay
just what he asked—would pay anything to get what they wanted; and the
particular thing they wanted now was a new way to dress up. None of them
thoughtitwasfunnyfortheseemlyoldprophetstodisportthemselvesataball,
not until the newspaper wits began to point it out. But it never pays for the
metropolitandailiestobetheirfunniestattheexpenseoftheclasswhichgives
fifty-thousand-dollar balls, so the affair got under way with much advertising,
andfewjibes.
Jerry,withhisfirstchecksafelydepositedinthebank,wentmerrilytoworkat
hisdesigns.Hespenthisdaysinthelibrary,studyingcostumes,lookingoverold
pictures,workingateffects.HedecideduponthethroneroomofKingHerodas
thebiggeneralbackgroundoftheshow.Heplannedawidestaircaseattheback,
where,onaplatformlikealanding,thetableauxshouldappear,afterwhichthe
actorsshoulddescendtobendthekneetothekingandqueen.
Theplansbegantogrow,and,artist-like,Jerryhurledhimselfintohisworkwith
abandon.Helabouredearlyandlate,untilhewastiredout,beforetherealtask
ofrehearsing,readjustinghumanequations,andsuchproblemshadbegun.
"Jerry, yougoose,youactas ifyouhadbeenengagedbytheCrownPrinceto
stagetheCoronation.Thisisnothingbutreadymoneytoyou,whydoyouwear


yourselfoutonit?"protestedBobs.
"I want it to be the biggest thing of the kind that New York ever had. I'm
interested in it. When it's over I will go off somewhere and rest. Don't you
worry."
"Mrs.AbercrombieBrendonwilltakeyouforacruiseonheryacht,maybe,"she
saidbitterly.
"Well, why not? I don't hate her yacht. What's the trouble, Bobsie? Are you
jealousoftheseladiesoftherichandgreat?"
Sheblazedoutathim.
"Yes,Iam.Whatrighthavetheytocomedownhere,takeyouawayfromyour
work, pick your brains, wear you out, and then drop you when they've taken
whattheywant?Ihatethemall!"
"Steady, old girl," said Jerry, putting a hand on each of her shoulders, and
makingherlookathim."Forapenny,I'dshakeyou,Bobs!WhatdoyouthinkI
am,amechanicaldoll?Don'tIhaveanythingtosayaboutwhattheydotome?"
"Youthinkyoudo,butyoudon't."
"Don'tyouworryaboutme,"hesaidshortly,andsheknewhewasannoyed.He
went back to work on a costume drawing, and Bobs went out without another
word.
"Damn,"saidJerrysoftly.Heworkedrapidlyforanhour.Thenamovementin
hisbedroomstartledhim.
"Who'sthat?"hecalled.
JaneJuddcameintoview,asockpulledoveronehand.
"Didyouspeak?"
"Oh,JaneJudd,Iforgotyouwerethere."
"IwentintotheotherroomwhenMissRobertscame."
Helookedatherquickly.
"Quiteunnecessary.Isthereanythinginthatice-boxIcouldeat?Ican'tstopfor


lunchto-day."
Sheinspectedhislarder.
"I'llgogetsomething,"shesaid.
"Oh,don'tbother.I'lldowithout."
Presentlyshestartedoff,inhatandcoat.
"Getenoughforbothofus,MissJudd;I'llblowyoutolunch."
Shemadenoanswer,closingthedoorsoftlynottodisturbhim.Later,shelaid
the table, served a chop, creamed potatoes, a salad, and Turkish coffee. When
shecalledhim,hecame,drawing-boardinhand.Sheservedhim.
"Whereisyourplace?"heinquired.
"Ibroughtsomelunch."
"You sit down there, and eat half this lunch. It's a grand tiffin. Where did you
learntocook,JaneJudd?"
She sat down opposite him, trembling in every inch of her body, but her face
woreitsusualcalm.
"Womendon'tlearntocook;theyjustabsorbit.I'vealwaysdoneit."
Shewenttothelittlestovetoserveherselftolunchandwhenshecamebackhe
wasstudyinghissketchwhileheate.Hescarcelynoticedher.Whensherefilled
hiscoffeecuphebecameawareofheragain.
"HeardaboutthisbigshowI'mgettingup?"
"Yes."
"Interestingthing.Howdidyouhearaboutit?"
"Everybody talks about it. I was at the Chatfields' yesterday. They were
discussingit."
"Werethey?Whatdidtheysay?"
"Ididn'tlisten."


"Youmeanyou'renotasieve."
Shesmiled.
"BytheGods,Ididnotknowyoueverusedasmile!Whatkindofpersonare
you,anyway?"
Sheroseatthat,asiftoendtheinterview.Hewentbacktohiswork.
"Oh,Isay,JaneJudd,Ididn'tmeantooffendyou,justwhenyouhadsmiledat
meforthefirsttimeinfiveyears'acquaintance,"hecalledouttoher.
"Allright,"sherepliedbriefly.
Jerrymadeagrimaceandforgother.
Asworkbegantopileup;asthiscommitteeandthatcommitteehadtoconsult
withhim;asthecostumershadtobearguedwith,stuffsselected;infact,asthe
whole big machine began to revolve on Jerry as axis, he frequently sent out a
hurrycallforJaneJuddtogethimsomelunchorsomedinner.Hewentonwith
his work while he ate, and never again did he try to pierce the subterranean
depthsofJane'spersonality.
Thelasttwoweeksofpreparationwerehectic.Jerry'sendurancewaswonderful,
buthisnerveswerewornthin.Attheeleventhhourthecostumersdecidedthat
theycouldnotturnoutthegownsforthe"vestalvirgins,"ontime.Theybroke
the news to Jerry over the 'phone one frantic day when everything had gone
wrong.
"MyGod!whatamIgoingtodo?"heburstout,ashehungupthereceiver.
"Whatisthematter?"Janeasked.
Heexplainedwithanoutburstofrage.
"Aretheyhardtomake?"
"No,butthey'vegottobedonedayafterto-morrow."
"Howmany?"
"Sixteen."
"IfIcouldgetacoupleofwomentohelp,Imightmanageitforyou."


"JaneJudd,doyoumeanit?Getsomebody;pay'emanything;butget'emhere
andlet'sbegin."
"Haveyougotthestuff?"
"No,butI'lltelephoneforitandgetitherespecial."
"Goahead.Don'tforgetthreadandneedles."
Whilehewastelephoning,Bobsappearedatthedoor.
"Lookhere,Jane;JerryPaxtonisabsorbingentirelytoomuchofyourtime.I'm
wearingstockingswithholesinthem."
"I was just coming to tell you that something has gone wrong with some
costumes,andI'veofferedtogetsomebodytohelpme,andmakethemforhim."
"Upon my word, is there anything else you can do for the pampered darling?
JinnyChatfieldandIcouldhelpyou."
"Thanks."
Bobsranofftogetherassistant,andwhenthestuffarrivedJanehadthreepairs
ofhandswaitingforJerry.
"Bobs,Jinny,Ican'ttakeyourtimelikethis,youolddears."
"Don'tblather,Jerry;explainthedesign,"saidJinny.
Helaughedandheldupadrawingwhichbothwomeninspected.
"Heavens!Idon'tknowhowtocutthat,"exclaimedBobs.
"NomoredoI,"saidJinny.
"Letmelookatit,"Janeremarked,andtheyallwaitedforhercomment.
"Doesthishangstraight,necktohem?"sheasked.
Heexplaineditcarefullytoher.
"IthinkIcancutit;thenI'llpinitonyou,MissRoberts,andifit'srightwe'llcut
themallatonce."
"HeavenbepraisedforJane,"saidBobs.


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