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As she crept in bed she wondered what he'd say in his special delivery
to-morrow. He had such a good-looking mouth--would she ever--?
"Fourteen angels were watching o'er them," sang Sally sleepily from the
"Damn!" muttered Isabelle, punching the pillow into a luxurious lump and
exploring the cold sheets cautiously. "Damn!"
Amory, by way of the Princetonian, had arrived. The minor snobs, finely
balanced thermometers of success, warmed to him as the club elections
grew nigh, and he and Tom were visited by groups of upper classmen who
arrived awkwardly, balanced on the edge of the furniture and talked of
all subjects except the one of absorbing interest. Amory was amused at
the intent eyes upon him, and, in case the visitors represented some
club in which he was not interested, took great pleasure in shocking
them with unorthodox remarks.
"Oh, let me see--" he said one night to a flabbergasted delegation,
"what club do you represent?"
With visitors from Ivy and Cottage and Tiger Inn he played the "nice,
unspoilt, ingenuous boy" very much at ease and quite unaware of the
object of the call.
When the fatal morning arrived, early in March, and the campus became
a document in hysteria, he slid smoothly into Cottage with Alec Connage
and watched his suddenly neurotic class with much wonder.
There were fickle groups that jumped from club to club; there were
friends of two or three days who announced tearfully and wildly that
they must join the same club, nothing should separate them; there were
snarling disclosures of long-hidden grudges as the Suddenly Prominent
remembered snubs of freshman year. Unknown men were elevated into
importance when they received certain coveted bids; others who were
considered "all set" found that they had made unexpected enemies, felt
themselves stranded and deserted, talked wildly of leaving college.
In his own crowd Amory saw men kept out for wearing green hats, for
being "a damn tailor's dummy," for having "too much pull in heaven,"
for getting drunk one night "not like a gentleman, by God," or for
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