Page:Manhattan Transfer (John Dos Passos, 1925).djvu/177

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Longlegged Jack of the Isthmus

165

There was a faint tapping at the door. "Who's that," she whispered.

"It just me," came a tearful voice.

Ellen unlocked the door. "Why Cassie what's the matter?"

Cassie rubbed her wet face in the hollow of Ellen's neck.

"Oh Cassie you're gumming my veil. . . . What on earth's the matter?"

"I've been up all night thinking how unhappy you must be."

"But Cassie I've never been happier in my life."

"Aren't men dweadful?"

"No. . . . They are much nicer than women anyway."

"Elaine I've got to tell you something. I know you dont care anything about me but I'm going to tell you all the same."

"Of course I care about you Cassie. . . . Dont be silly.

But I'm busy now. . . . Why dont you go back to bed and tell me later?"

"I've got to tell you now." Ellen sat down on her trunk resignedly. "Elaine I've bwoken it off with Morris. . . . Isn't it tewible?" Cassie wiped her eyes on the sleeve of her lavender dressinggown and sat down beside Ellen on the trunk.

"Look dear," said Ellen gently. "Suppose you wait just a second, I'm going to telephone for a taxi. I want to make a getaway before Jojo's up. I'm sick of big scenes." The hall smelled stuffily of sleep and massagecream. Ellen talked very low into the receiver. The gruff man's voice at the garage growled pleasantly in her ears. "Sure right away miss." She tiptoed springily back into the room and closed the door.

"I thought he loved me, honestly I did Elaine. Oh men are so dweadful. Morris was angwy because I wouldn't live with him. I think it would be wicked. I'd work my fingers to the bone for him, he knows that. Havent I been doing it two years? He said be couldnt go on unless he had me weally, you know what he meant, and I said our love was so beautiful it could go on for years and years. I could love him for