The last high note screeched across the room like a shell, and the applause that followed was like a shell's bursting. One could hardly have recognised the refined interior of the Cosmopolis dining-room. Fair women were waving napkins; brave men were hammering on the tables with the butt-end of knives, for all the world as if they imagined themselves to be in one of those distressing midnight-revue places. Miss Huskisson bowed, retired, returned, bowed, and retired again, the tears streaming down her ample face. Over in a corner Archie could see his brother-in-law clapping strenuously. A waiter, with a display of manly emotion that did him credit, dropped an order of new peas.
"Thirty years ago last October," said Mr. Connolly, in a shaking voice, "I——"
Mr. Brewsterhim violently.
"I'll fire that orchestra-leader! He goes to-morrow! I'll fire——" He turned on Archie. "What the devil do you mean by it, you—you——"
"Thirty years ago," said Mr. Connolly, wiping away a tear with his napkin, "I left me dear old home in the old country——"
"My hotel a bear-garden!"
"Frightfully sorry and all that, old companion——"
"Thirty years ago last October! 'Twas a fine autumn evening, the finest ye'd ever wish to see. Me old mother, she came to the station to see me off."
Mr. Brewster, who was not deeply interested in Mr. Connolly's old mother, continued to splutter inarticulately, like a firework trying to go off."'Ye'll always be a good boy, Aloysius?" she said to me," said Mr. Connolly, proceeding with his autobiog-