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beside him and a voice hailed him. He looked up and saw a magnificent
Locomobile in which sat two middle-aged men, one of them small and
anxious looking, apparently an artificial growth on the other who was
large and begoggled and imposing.
"Do you want a lift?" asked the apparently artificial growth, glancing
from the corner of his eye at the imposing man as if for some habitual,
"You bet I do. Thanks."
The chauffeur swung open the door, and, climbing in, Amory settled
himself in the middle of the back seat. He took in his companions
curiously. The chief characteristic of the big man seemed to be a
great confidence in himself set off against a tremendous boredom with
everything around him. That part of his face which protruded under the
goggles was what is generally termed "strong"; rolls of not undignified
fat had collected near his chin; somewhere above was a wide thin
mouth and the rough model for a Roman nose, and, below, his shoulders
collapsed without a struggle into the powerful bulk of his chest and
belly. He was excellently and quietly dressed. Amory noticed that he
was inclined to stare straight at the back of the chauffeur's head as if
speculating steadily but hopelessly some baffling hirsute problem.
The smaller man was remarkable only for his complete submersion in the
personality of the other. He was of that lower secretarial type who
at forty have engraved upon their business cards: "Assistant to the
President," and without a sigh consecrate the rest of their lives to
"Going far?" asked the smaller man in a pleasant disinterested way.
"Quite a stretch."
"Hiking for exercise?"
"No," responded Amory succinctly, "I'm walking because I can't afford to
"Are you looking for work? Because there's lots of work," he continued
rather testily. "All this talk of lack of work. The West is especially
short of labor." He expressed the West with a sweeping, lateral gesture.
Amory nodded politely.
"Have you a trade?"
No--Amory had no trade.
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