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to "cultivate" him. Servants worshipped him, and treated him like a god.
He seemed the eternal example of what the upper class tries to be.
"He's like those pictures in the Illustrated London News of the English
officers who have been killed," Amory had said to Alec. "Well," Alec
had answered, "if you want to know the shocking truth, his father was a
grocery clerk who made a fortune in Tacoma real estate and came to New
York ten years ago."
Amory had felt a curious sinking sensation.
This present type of party was made possible by the surging together of
the class after club elections--as if to make a last desperate attempt
to know itself, to keep together, to fight off the tightening spirit of
the clubs. It was a let-down from the conventional heights they had all
walked so rigidly.
After supper they saw Kaluka to the boardwalk, and then strolled back
along the beach to Asbury. The evening sea was a new sensation, for all
its color and mellow age was gone, and it seemed the bleak waste that
made the Norse sagas sad; Amory thought of Kipling's
"Beaches of Lukanon before the sealers came."
It was still a music, though, infinitely sorrowful.
Ten o'clock found them penniless. They had suppered greatly on their
last eleven cents and, singing, strolled up through the casinos and
lighted arches on the boardwalk, stopping to listen approvingly to all
band concerts. In one place Kerry took up a collection for the French
War Orphans which netted a dollar and twenty cents, and with this they
bought some brandy in case they caught cold in the night. They finished
the day in a moving-picture show and went into solemn systematic roars
of laughter at an ancient comedy, to the startled annoyance of the rest
of the audience. Their entrance was distinctly strategic, for each man
as he entered pointed reproachfully at the one just behind him. Sloane,
bringing up the rear, disclaimed all knowledge and responsibility as
soon as the others were scattered inside; then as the irate ticket-taker
rushed in he followed nonchalantly.
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