Page:The Intrusion of Jimmy.djvu/251

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a warm-hearted girl, Spennie. A charming, warm-hearted girl! You're uncommonly lucky, my boy."

His lordship, crackling the four bank-notes, silently agreed with him.

"But, come, I must be dressing. Dear me, it is very late. We shall have to hurry. By the way, my boy, I shall take the opportunity of making a public announcement of the engagement to-night. It will be a capital occasion for it. I think, perhaps, at the conclusion of the theatricals, a little speech—something quite impromptu and informal, just asking them to wish you happiness, and so on. I like the idea. There is an old-world air about it that appeals to me. Yes."

He turned to the dressing-table, and removed his collar.

"Well, run along, my boy," he said. "You must not be late." His lordship tottered from the room.

He did quite an unprecedented amount of thinking as he hurried into his evening clothes; but the thought occurring most frequently was that, whatever happened, all was well in one way, at any rate. He had the twenty pounds. There would be something colossal in the shape of disturbances when his uncle learned the truth. It would be the biggest thing since the San Francisco earthquake. But what of it? He had the money.

He slipped it into his waistcoat-pocket. He would take it down with him, and pay Hargate directly after dinner.