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Forty-third Street and strolled to the Biltmore bar.
"What'll you have?"
The advent of prohibition with the "thirsty-first" put a sudden stop to
the submerging of Amory's sorrows, and when he awoke one morning to find
that the old bar-to-bar days were over, he had neither remorse for the
past three weeks nor regret that their repetition was impossible. He had
taken the most violent, if the weakest, method to shield himself
from the stabs of memory, and while it was not a course he would
have prescribed for others, he found in the end that it had done its
business: he was over the first flush of pain.
Don't misunderstand! Amory had loved Rosalind as he would never love
another living person. She had taken the first flush of his youth and
brought from his unplumbed depths tenderness that had surprised
him, gentleness and unselfishness that he had never given to another
creature. He had later love-affairs, but of a different sort: in those
he went back to that, perhaps, more typical frame of mind, in which the
girl became the mirror of a mood in him. Rosalind had drawn out what was
more than passionate admiration; he had a deep, undying affection for
But there had been, near the end, so much dramatic tragedy, culminating
in the arabesque nightmare of his three weeks' spree, that he was
emotionally worn out. The people and surroundings that he remembered as
being cool or delicately artificial, seemed to promise him a refuge. He
wrote a cynical story which featured his father's funeral and despatched
it to a magazine, receiving in return a check for sixty dollars and a
request for more of the same tone. This tickled his vanity, but inspired
him to no further effort.
He read enormously. He was puzzled and depressed by "A Portrait of the
Artist as a Young Man"; intensely interested by "Joan and Peter" and
"The Undying Fire," and rather surprised by his discovery through a
critic named Mencken of several excellent American novels: "Vandover
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