That’s where all her thoughts were when John Galbraith halted her on the way to the dressing-room after the performance was over.
THE MAN AND THE DIRECTOR
He said, “I want a talk with you,” and she, thinking he meant then and there, glanced about for a corner where they’d be tolerably secure against the charging rushes of grips, property men and electricians, all racing against time to get the third act struck and the first one set and make their escape from the theater.
“Oh, I don’t mean here in this bedlam,” he explained with a tinge of impatience. And then his manner changed. “I’d like, for once, a chance to sit down with you where it’s—quiet and we don’t have to feel in a hurry.” He added, a second later, answering a shade of what he took to be doubt or hesitation in her face, “You’re frightfully tired I know. If you’d rather wait till to-morrow ...”
“Oh, it wasn’t that,” said Rose. “I was just trying to think where a place was where one could be quiet and needn’t hurry and where two people could talk.”
He smiled. “You can leave that to me,” he said. “That is, if you don’t mind a restaurant and a little supper.”
“Of course I don’t mind,” she said. “I’d like it very much.”
He nodded. “Don’t rush your dressing,” he suggested, as he moved away. “I’ve got plenty to do.”
The sextette dressed together in a sort of pen—big enough, because they had all sorts of room down under the old Globe stage, but so far as appointments went, decidedly primitive. The walls were of matched boards; there was a shelf two feet wide or so around three sides of it, to make a sort of continuous dressing-table; there were six mirrors, six deal chairs and a few hooks. These were for your street clothes. The stage costumes hung in neat ranks outside under the eye of the wardrobe mistress. When you wanted to put one on you went out and got it, and if the time allowed for the change were sufficient you took it back into your dressing-room. Otherwise you plunged into it just where you were. When you wanted to wash before putting on or after taking off your make-up you went to a row of stationary wash-bowls down the corridor.
All told it wasn’t a place to linger in over the indulgence of day-dreams. But the first glimpse Rose caught, as she opened the door, in the mirror next her own, was the entranced face of Olga Larson. The other girls were in an advanced state of undress, intent on getting out as quickly as they could. They were all talking straight along, of course, but that didn’t delay their operations a bit. They talked through the towels they were wiping off the make-up with, talked bent double over shoe-buckles, talked in little gasps as they tugged at tight sweaty things that didn’t want to come off. And they made a striking contrast to Olga, who sat there just as she’d left the stage, without a hook unfastened, in a rapturous reverie, waiting for Rose.