A Damsel in Distress eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 302 pages of information about A Damsel in Distress.

“It’s much too kind of you.  Could you manage eleven shillings?”

“Easily.  I’ve just had a legacy.”

“Of course, if you think I ought to be economical, I’ll go third-class.  That would only be five shillings.  Ten-and-six is the first-class fare.  So you see the place I want to get to is two hours from London.”

“Well, that’s something to know.”

“But not much, is it?”

“I think I had better lend you a sovereign.  Then you’ll be able to buy a lunch-basket.”

“You think of everything.  And you’re perfectly right.  I shall be starving.  But how do you know you will get the money back?”

“I’ll risk it.”

“Well, then, I shall have to be inquisitive and ask your name.  Otherwise I shan’t know where to send the money.”

“Oh, there’s no mystery about me.  I’m an open book.”

“You needn’t be horrid about it.  I can’t help being mysterious.”

“I didn’t mean that.”

“It sounded as if you did.  Well, who is my benefactor?”

“My name is George Bevan.  I am staying at the Carlton at present.”

“I’ll remember.”

The taxi moved slowly down the Haymarket.  The girl laughed.

“Yes?” said George.

“I was only thinking of back there.  You know, I haven’t thanked you nearly enough for all you did.  You were wonderful.”

“I’m very glad I was able to be of any help.”

“What did happen?  You must remember I couldn’t see a thing except your back, and I could only hear indistinctly.”

“Well, it started by a man galloping up and insisting that you had got into the cab.  He was a fellow with the appearance of a before-using advertisement of an anti-fat medicine and the manners of a ring-tailed chimpanzee.”

The girl nodded.

“Then it was Percy!  I knew I wasn’t mistaken.”

“Percy?”

“That is his name.”

“It would be!  I could have betted on it.”

“What happened then?”

“I reasoned with the man, but didn’t seem to soothe him, and finally he made a grab for the door-handle, so I knocked off his hat, and while he was retrieving it we moved on and escaped.”

The girl gave another silver peal of laughter.

“Oh, what a shame I couldn’t see it.  But how resourceful of you!  How did you happen to think of it?”

“It just came to me,” said George modestly.

A serious look came into the girl’s face.  The smile died out of her eyes.  She shivered.

“When I think how some men might have behaved in your place!”

“Oh, no.  Any man would have done just what I did.  Surely, knocking off Percy’s hat was an act of simple courtesy which anyone would have performed automatically!”

“You might have been some awful bounder.  Or, what would have been almost worse, a slow-witted idiot who would have stopped to ask questions before doing anything.  To think I should have had the luck to pick you out of all London!”

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Project Gutenberg
A Damsel in Distress from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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