Page:Manhattan Transfer (John Dos Passos, 1925).djvu/335

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Revolving Doors


Roy Sheffield beside a bell in a dimly lit hall. As soon as he pressed the bell the catch on the door began to click. He ran up the stairs. Roy had his big curly head with its glass gray gollywog eyes stuck out the door.

"Hello Jimmy; come on in; we're all lit up like churches."

"I've just seen a fight between bootleggers and hijackers."


"Down at Sheepshead Bay."

"Here's Jimmy Herf, he's just been fighting prohibition agents," shouted Roy to his wife. Alice had dark chestnut dollhair and an uptilted peaches and cream dollface. She ran up to Jimmy and kissed him on the chin. "Oh Jimmy do tell us all about it. . . . We're so horribly bored."

"Hello," cried Jimmy; he had just made out Frances and Bob Hildebrand on the couch at the dim end of the room. They lifted their glasses to him. Jimmy was pushed into an armchair, had a glass of gin and ginger ale put in his hand. "Now what's all this about a fight? You'd better tell us because were certainly not going to buy the Sunday Tribune to find out," Bob Hildebrand said in a deep rum' bling voice.

Jimmy took a long drink. "I went out with a man I know who's shiek of all the French and Italian bootleggers. He's a fine man. He's got a cork leg. He set me up to a swell feed and real Italian wine out in a deserted poolroom on the shores of Sheepshead Bay. . . ."

"By the way," asked Roy, "where's Helena."

"Dent interrupt Roy," said Alice. "This is good . . . and besides you should never ask a man where his wife is."

"Then there was a lot of flashing of signal lights and stuff and a motorboat loaded down with Mumm's extra dry champagne for Park Avenue Christmases came in and the hijackers arrived on a speedboat. . . . It probably was a hydroplane it came so fast . . ."

"My this is exciting," cooed Alice. ". . . Roy why dont you take up bootlegging?"

"Worst fight I ever saw outside of the movies, six or seven on a side all slugging each other on a little narrow