She sat down under the onslaught, trying to arrange her rebellious features.
“‘Nix on the high-brow stuff.’ To me!” he repeated.
Bambi gave up. She rolled on the bed, and laughed.
Jarvis raged the room up and down. There was no gleam of humour in it for him. When her paroxysm had passed, she sat up and looked at him.
“Poor old Knight with the Broken Lance,” she said. “It’s tough, but it had to be done.”
“What had to be done?”
“This morning’s work. It was part of your training. You must know just what the situation is here, in the market-place.”
“But there is no place for me here.”
“After two days’ failure, you give up?”
“I told you I couldn’t sell my things. They are too good.”
“That’s rubbish. Nothing you, nor I, nor any other human can think, is too good. If we have big thoughts, and want to tell them to our brothers who speak another tongue, if we have the brains, we must learn their tongue, not hope for them to acquire ours. That is what I hoped you would see.”
“You think I’ve got to learn the Broadway lingo?”
“I do. If you have anything to say, Broadway needs it.”
“I can’t translate what I want to say into that speech.”
“But you can. It will mean hard work, hard work and heartache, and disappointment, but you can do it, because you have the soul stuff of a great man.”
Her eyes shone now, misted with feeling. He saw again his multitudes flocking to him in the wilderness. He saw them aroused, revived, triumphant over life through him.
“Will you help me?” he cried to her. It was his first uttered need of her, and her heart beat high in response.
“I will, if you will let me, Jack o’ Dreams.”
“Don’t let me give up! Don’t let me lose heart!”
“No, I won’t. I’ll push, or haul you, to the top!”
“I came to scoff, and I stay to pray,” said Jarvis, cryptically. “God bless you, Bambi!” he added, as he left her.
No letter from Mr. Strong arrived in the morning’s mail, so Bambi induced Jarvis to go over to the Cubist show, by himself, on the plea that she had a headache. He went, most willingly, anywhere, except Broadway.
The minute he was out of the way her languid, headachey manner changed to one of brisk energy. She donned her smartest frock and hat. She was more earnest in her effort to allure the eye than she was on the day of her own conquest. “You must look your best, you little old Bambi, you, and see what you can do for big Jarvis!”
After the last nod of approval at her reflected self, she tucked Jarvis’s manuscript under her arm, and started forth. She had made a close study of all the theatrical columns of the papers and magazines since their arrival in New York, so she was beginning to have a formal bowing acquaintance with the names of the leading managers.