Page:Manhattan Transfer (John Dos Passos, 1925).djvu/257

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Five Statutory Questions

245

I was a wise guy." He caught his breath . . . "but I aint. . . . You've got me goin Httle girl and I hate to admit it. . . . Why cant you like me a little bit? I'd like . . . us to get married as soon as you get your decree. . . . Wouldn't you be kinder nice to me once in a while . . .? I'd do anything for you, you know that. . . . There are lots of things in New York I could do for you. . . ." The music stopped. They stood apart under a palm. "Elaine come over to my office and sign that contract. I had Ferrari wait. . . . We can be back in fifteen minutes."

"I've got to think it over . . . I never do anything without sleeping on it."

"Gosh you drive a feller wild."

Suddenly she remembered Stan's face altogether, he was standing in front of her with a bow tie crooked in his soft shirt, his hair rumpled, drinking again.

"Oh Ellie I'm so glad to see you. . . ."

"This is Mr, Emery, Mr. Goldweiser. . . ."

"I've been on the most exordinately spectacular trip, honestly you should have come. . . . We went to Montreal and Quebec and came back through Niagara Falls and we never drew a sober breath from the time we left little old New York till they arrested us for speeding on the Boston Post Road, did we Pearline?" Ellen was staring at a girl who stood groggily behind Stan with a small flowered straw hat pulled down over a pair of eyes the blue of watered milk.

"Ellie this is Pearline. . . . Isn't it a fine name? I almost split when she told me what it was. . . . But you dont know the joke. . . . We got so tight in Niagara Falls that when we came to we found we were married. . . . And we have pansies on our marriage license. . . ."

Ellen couldnt see his face. The orchestra, the jangle of voices, the clatter of plates spouted spiraling louder and louder about her . . .

And the ladies of the harem
Knew exactly how to wear 'em
In O-riental Bagdad long ago. . . .