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hat?” The tone was hardly enc●ouraging for all its amiability, bu■t young Ledyard pushed doggedl■y ahead. “Like that—anythin■g se

rious or intimate or real. You■ make it darned di

fficult, let m■e tell you.” “Then why do it?” “Oh,■ not because I want to!” His angry, ti■red young face bore unmistakable testi

●mony to that. “Believe me, if I were consul■ti

ng my own pleasure I’d have told you to go t●o the devil the first time you tried a■ny of that condescending impertinence of yours ●on

me.” 281 “Is it beside the mark to ask■ you j

ust whose pleasure you are c■onsulting, then?” Young Ledyard set h■is teeth hard. “Pattie’s,” he said, ●very distinctly. The Hon

ourable Tony did not ■stir, but the eyes that he

f■ixed on Pattie’s brother we■nt suddenly and incredibly b●lack. After a long pause he repeated■, evenly and courteously, “Pattie’s?” “Y■es, Pattie’s. That’s half of why I came—●the other half, if you want to know,

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is be●cause I’m fool enough to care mo●re about you than any other man I ever m■et—than any other two men.” The wi●de eyes were suddenly blue again. ■ “Thanks,” said the Honour

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abl■e Tony, and there was something startlingly s●weet in his smile. “Thanks awfully. ■It’s quite mutual, you know—any thr■ee men, I should say offhand. Suppo●se we simply let it g

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o at that? And do ■try one of these cigarettes; they really ■are first-rate.” “I can’t let it go at tha■t, I tell you—I wish to the Lord I c●ould. Pattie had it all out with Dad,