Page:Manhattan Transfer (John Dos Passos, 1925).djvu/204

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Manhattan Transfer

member someday that an old drunken bum told you that and it'll be too late."

"Oh it was drink was it? That's one thing I'm not afraid of. I don't touch the stuff, except beer to be sociable."

"Look here bo the company detective'll be makin his rounds soon. You'd better be making tracks."

"I ain't ascared of any goddam company detective. . . . Well so long I'll come in to see you again someday."

"Close that door behind you."

Joe Harland drew a little water from a tin container, settled himself in his chair and stretched his arms out and yawned. Eleven o'clock. They would just be getting out of the theaters, men in eveningclothes, girls in lowneck dresses; men were going home to their wives and mistresses; the city was going to bed. Taxis honked and rasped outside the hoarding, the sky shimmered with gold powder from electric signs. He dropped the butt of the cigar and crushed it on the floor with his heel. He shuddered and got to his feet, then paced slowly round the edge of the buildinglot swinging his lantern.

The light from the street yellowed faintly a big sign on which was a picture of a skyscraper, white with black windows against blue sky and white clouds. Segal and Haynes will erect on this site a modern uptodate Twentyfour Story Office Building open for occupancy January 1915 renting space still available inquire. . . .

Jimmy Herf sat reading on a green couch under a bulb that lit up a corner of a wide bare room. He had come to the death of Olivier in Jean Christophe and read with tightening gullet. In his memory lingered the sound of the Rhine swirling, restlessly gnawing the foot of the garden of the house where Jean Christophe was born. Europe was a green park in his mind full of music and red flags and mobs marching. Occasionally the sound of a steamboat whistle from the river settled breathless snowysoft into the