Page:Manhattan Transfer (John Dos Passos, 1925).djvu/223

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Fire Engine


to Milly as she slipped off her dress. Oh I wish he would stop drinking."

"I'd put him in the shower and turn cold water on him deary."

"How's the house tonight Milly?"

"Pretty thin Miss Elaine."

"I guess it's the bad weather . . . I'm going to be terrible."

"Dont let him get you worked up deary. Men aint worth it."

"I want to go byby." Stan was swaying and frowning in the center of the room. "Miss Elaine I'll put him in the bathroom; nobody'll notice him there."

"That's it, let him go to sleep in the bathtub."

"Ellie I'll go byby in the bathtub."

The two women pushed him into the bathroom. He flopped limply into the tub, and lay there asleep with his feet in the air and his head on the faucets. Milly was making little rapid clucking noises with her tongue.

"He's like a sleepy baby when he's like this," whispered Ellen softly. She stuck the folded bathmat under his head and brushed the sweaty hair off his forehead. He was hardly breathing. She leaned and kissed his eyelids very softly.

"Miss Elaine you must hurry . . . curtain's ringing up."

"Look quick am I all right?"

"Pretty as a picture. . . . Lord love you dear,"

Ellen ran down the stairs and round to the wings, stood there, panting with terror as if she had just missed being run over by an automobile grabbed the musicroll she had to go on with from the property man, got her cue and walked on into the glare.

"How do you do it Elaine?" Harry Goldweiser was saying, shaking his calf's head from the chair behind her. She could see him in the mirror as she took her makeup off. A taller man with gray eyes and eyebrows stood beside him. "You remember when they first cast you for the part I said to Mr. Fallik, Sol she cant do it, didnt I Sol?"