“Thank you, ladies; we always do things thorough.”
“-ly!” screamed Katherine Crane. Yes, it was really a scream, an explosion, too, if the indelicacy may be excused. But the opportunity for a come-back struck her so keenly, so swiftly, that she just could not contain her eagerness to beat somebody else to it.
Well, the laugh that followed also was of the nature of an explosion. And it was on poor Katherine quite as much as on Earl, who had tripped up on an adjective in place of an adverb. The girl’s eagerness was so evident that it struck everybody as funnier than the boy’s mistake in grammar. Anyway, she recovered quite smartly and followed up her attack with this pert addendum as the laughter subsided:
“You evidently don’t do your lessons thorough-ly.” The emphasis on the “-ly” was so pronounced, almost spasmodic, as to bring forth another laughing applause.
This exchange of repartee took place in the large school auditorium, to which all repaired as soon as the outdoor exercises had been finished.
The program of the evening was punctuated by interruptions of this kind every now and then. Of course, the fun-makers waited for suitable opportunities to spring their “quips and cranks,” so that no merited interest in the doing could be lost. And none of it was lost. The presence of the bold invaders seemed to add zest to the most routine of the Camp Fire performances, and when all was over everybody was agreed that there had not been a dull minute during the whole evening.
At the close of the Camp Fire Girls’ program the 150 Boy Scouts arose and, with heroic unison of voices peculiar to much practice in the delivery of school yells, they chanted a clever parody of Wo-he-lo Cheer, a Boy Scout’s compliment to the Camp Fire Girls, and then marched out of the auditorium and away toward the interurban line, where their chartered train was waiting for them, and all the while they continued the chant with variations of the words, the rhythmic drive of their voices pulsing back to the Institute, but becoming fainter and more faint until at last the sound was lost with the speeding away of the trolley train in the distance.
* * * * *
The skull and cross-bones.
If Marion Stanlock, “High Peak” in the trait and a torch bearer, had read one of two letters, signed with a “skull and cross-bones,” which she found lying on the desk in her room after the adjournment of the Grand Council Fire, doubtless there would have been an interruption, and probably a change, in the holiday program of the Flamingo Camp Fire. She saw the letters lying there and under ordinary circumstances would have torn them open and read them, however hastily, before retiring. But on this occasion she was rather tired, owing to the activities and the excitement of the day and evening. Moreover, she realized that she could not hope for anything but a wearisome journey to Hollyhill on the following day unless she refreshed herself with as many hours sleep as possible before train time.