So she surprised the Professor at breakfast.
“Morning!” she cried.
“Bambi! We didn’t expect you so soon.”
“I finished what I had to do, so here I am.”
“Oh, he’s well.”
“Was he surprised to see you?”
“Is he getting on?”
“Slowly. But he will win.”
“If he can learn to be practical——”
“He’s learning,” said Bambi, grimly.
“When is he coming home?”
“He did not say.”
“Nobody buys his plays yet?”
“I’m not surprised. That woman, you know, in the play he read us——”
“Don’t talk about her till I get my breakfast.”
He looked at her in surprise, she was so seldom irritated.
She rang for
“Why, Miss Bambi, honey! I didn’t see yo’ all comin’.”
“Here I am, and hungry, too.”
“How’s Mistah Jarvis?”
“All right. Breakfast, Ardelia, I perish.”
“Did you have a successful trip?” inquired her father.
“I did, very.”
“How did you find Babylon?”
“As Babylonish as ever.”
She seemed strangely disinclined for conversation, so her wise parent left her to her meditations and her breakfast. But he patted her as he passed to go out.
“We’re glad to have you back, my daughter.”
She brushed his cheek with her lips, understandingly.
“God’s in his heaven! All’s right with the world!” carrolled Bambi gayly the next day.
She wrote Mr. Strong of her interview with Mr. Frohman and its happy outcome. It gave her some satisfaction to announce that the manager was willing to entrust Jarvis with the play. She explained that she was obliged to come home on the night train, so she had missed the pleasure of seeing him. Would he see that Mr. Frohman had the first bound copy of the book?
She added that she was happy, but it was superfluous. It sang itself through the note, so that Strong patted the paper, as he finished it, as if it were a personal belonging of the sender.
The letter finished, she mounted the stairs to Jarvis’s house, as she always called the top floor. She wandered about, comparing it with that place of confinement where he now dwelt. To-day he would write or telegraph to her his news, if he had the interview with Frohman.
She began work on the play, up in his study. She outlined the main plot, marked scenes in the book she thought vital, scraps of conversation which would be effective. She planned the sets for the different acts, even deciding upon Francesca’s clothes. Ever and anon, in the midst of her happy scheming, she fell to dreaming of the days to come, with Jarvis home again, and their work together resumed.
Whenever the doorbell rang she stopped and waited for Ardelia’s heavy foot upon the stairs as she toiled up with the telegram or special delivery. But the morning passed, plus half the afternoon, with no word from him. She went down to the post-office herself in the hope that the late mail would reward her. There was nothing for her.