“Howdy, Miss Bambi? Howdy, Mistah Jarvis? Heah we is.”
“Bless your old hearts!” said Bambi, hugging them both.
“How are you, children?” the Professor inquired.
“We’re fine! Did you have a comfortable time on the trip? Why did you sit in the day coach, father?”
“De Perfessor, he won’t set in de’ chaih cah, cause’n dey won’t let me in dere, an’ he’s ’fraid he fergit to git off less’n he was ’longside ob me.”
“But the train stops here—it doesn’t go any farther. My! Ardelia, you do look stylish!”
“Yas’m. Wait until yo’ see my noo black silk. I’se got me a tight skirt, an’ a Dutch neck—Lawzee, honey, but dis ole niggah’s gittin’ mighty frisky.”
She and Jarvis had an argument about the bags. She insisted upon carrying them herself, and indignantly refused the help of the coloured porter.
“Go way f’um heah, boy. Yo’ reckon I gwine trust yo’ all wid ma’ noo silk dress an de Perfessor’s dress suit? No, sah!”
She kept them laughing all the way to the club with her tales of their difficulties and excitements in getting off. Her exclamations on everything she saw were convulsing. When they arrived at the club, and she discovered that she was to have the little room next to Bambi’s, her satisfaction was complete.
Bambi ordered the entire family to repose on its respective backs for an hour before they dressed for dinner. So they parted to obey orders. For that hour Bambi held herself firmly upon her bed, completing her plans. They had agreed, she and Jarvis, that if there should be a call for the author, they would take it together, and Jarvis would speak. She was not sure just how she was to make the revelation to him of her dual personality. She decided to leave it to chance.
Never in her life had she been so excited. The double responsibility as author and playwright shrank to second place in comparison with the fact that this night she was to tell Jarvis of her love for him—hear him speak his love for her.
Before the hour of enforced quiet was over she could hear Ardelia tiptoeing about her room. Presently her head was cautiously inserted through the door. When she saw a hand waved at her, she bounced in.
“Laws, honey, I’se so excited, I cain’t hol’ my eyes shet. I got de Perfessor’s dress suit cloes all laid out smooth, wif de buttons in de shirt, an’ de white tie ready. Now, yo’ let me help yo’ all git dressed befo’ I begin to wrassle wid dat tight skirt ob mine.”
“All right, sit down and hold your hands till I jump into my bath.”
While Bambi bathed, Ardelia shouted all the gossip of home through the bathroom door. Upon Bambi’s reappearance, she insisted upon dressing her like a child. She put on her silk stockings and slippers, getting herself down and up with many a grunt. She constituted herself a critical judge in the hairdressing process, and fussed about every pin.