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137
FAREWELL TO A HERO

don’t row as smoothly as the Corinthians, do they?” she answered, “Don’t they? I was just watching Edward.”

Edward himself knew that they had n’t rowed as well—knew it before even the applause, so much lighter than that which the Corinthians had received, informed him. From his place at number three he had seen the break just behind Sheldon.

“Shucks! We were rotten!” Dillaway, the bow oar, exclaimed on the stairway.

“Oh, well,” Sheldon answered, “races are n’t won on just form.”

The ladder-climbing was the next event on the programme; Fraser and Sheldon were the only entries, and Fraser was in the Infirmary with the measles. So Sheldon stepped out alone.

Edward waited on the stairs before going down to dress. He saw Sheldon rub his hands with resin, then start springing up the long, slanting ladder, slap, slap, slap, chinning himself and jumping up from each rung.

Halfway up his speed slackened; each leap