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AMORY, SON OF BEATRICE
SPIRES AND GARGOYLES
THE EGOTIST CONSIDERS
NARCISSUS OFF DUTY
THE DEBUTANTE
EXPERIMENTS IN CONVALESCENCE
YOUNG IRONY
THE SUPERCILIOUS SACRIFICE
THE EGOTIST BECOMES A PERSONAGE

 

"Why, sure, of course." 

 

"Do you see why?" 

 

"You bet--I suppose so." 

 

"If you don't see, tell me. I'm here to show you." 

 

"Well, Mr. Rooney, if you don't mind, I wish you'd go over that again." 

 

"Gladly. Now here's 'A'..." 

 

The room was a study in stupidity--two huge stands for paper, Mr. Rooney 

in his shirt-sleeves in front of them, and slouched around on chairs, 

a dozen men: Fred Sloane, the pitcher, who absolutely _had_ to get 

eligible; "Slim" Langueduc, who would beat Yale this fall, if only he 

could master a poor fifty per cent; McDowell, gay young sophomore, who 

thought it was quite a sporting thing to be tutoring here with all these 

prominent athletes. 

 

"Those poor birds who haven't a cent to tutor, and have to study during 

the term are the ones I pity," he announced to Amory one day, with a 

flaccid camaraderie in the droop of the cigarette from his pale lips. "I 

should think it would be such a bore, there's so much else to do in New 

York during the term. I suppose they don't know what they miss, anyhow." 

There was such an air of "you and I" about Mr. McDowell that Amory very 

nearly pushed him out of the open window when he said this. ... Next 

February his mother would wonder why he didn't make a club and increase 

his allowance... simple little nut.... 

 

Through the smoke and the air of solemn, dense earnestness that filled 

the room would come the inevitable helpless cry: 

 

"I don't get it! Repeat that, Mr. Rooney!" Most of them were so stupid 

or careless that they wouldn't admit when they didn't understand, and 

Amory was of the latter. He found it impossible to study conic sections; 

something in their calm and tantalizing respectability breathing 

defiantly through Mr. Rooney's fetid parlors distorted their equations 

into insoluble anagrams. He made a last night's effort with the 

proverbial wet towel, and then blissfully took the exam, wondering 

unhappily why all the color and ambition of the spring before had faded 

out. Somehow, with the defection of Isabelle the idea of undergraduate 

success had loosed its grasp on his imagination, and he contemplated a 


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