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Page:Roy Norton--The unknown Mr Kent.djvu/163

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was further surprised when it was publicly an- nounced that His Majesty, Karl II, was heading a scheme for the utilisation of some mineral springs, and would from state funds establish a spa that it was hoped would be second to none in Europe, where gout, rheumatism, Bright 's disease and many other ailments would be promptly alle- viated, or cured, under the supervision of famous specialists. The king wasn't sure that he liked it. The best he could hope for was that Kent would not have a picture of the king and His Majesty's personal guarantee on every bottle of water exported. And in the meantime, Mr. Kent, cause of all the disturbance, was happier than he had ever been in his life. He was the first in his office in the morning, and the last to leave at night. The dignity of the staid old palace was being rudely shaken by constant streams of those who came on business, were received by the square- jawed man who always explained that he was merely the king's mouthpiece appointed to trans- act whatever was to be done in this particular case, etc., etc., and

"Sit down! Did you bring those plans? Well, skip all that! What's it going to cost? That's too much. Ought to be shaved by twenty per cent. Take those estimates back and go over them again. No use in your trying to fool the king, is there?

You fellows around here have got to wake up. The