“But we are, aren’t we?”
Although understood before, it had now come in full force. I, who had been but Barbara Archibald before, was now engaged. Could it be I who heard my voice saying, in a low tone, the “yes” of Destiny? It was!
We then went to the corner drug-store and had some soda, although forbiden by my Familey because of city water being used. How strange to me to recall that I had once thought the Clerk nice-looking, and had even purchaced things there, such as soap and chocolate, in order to speak a few words to him!
I was engaged, dear Reader, but not yet kissed. Tom came into our vestabule with me, and would doubtless have done so when no one was passing, but that George opened the door suddenly.
However, what difference, when we had all the rest of our Lives to kiss in? Or so I then considered.
Carter Brooks came to dinner that night because his people were out of town, and I think he noticed that I looked mature and dignafied, for he stared at me a lot. And father said:
“Bab, you’re not eating. Is it possable that that boarding school hollow of yours is filling up?”
One’s Familey is apt to translate one’s finest Emotions into terms of food and drink. Yet could I say that it was my Heart and not my Stomache that was full? I could not.
During dinner I looked at Leila and wondered how she could be married off. For until so I would continue to be but a Child, and not allowed to be engaged or anything. I thought if she would eat some starches it would help, she being pretty but thin. I therfore urged her to eat potatos and so on, because of evening dress and showing her coller bones, but she was quite nasty.
“Eat your dinner,” she said in an unfraternal maner, “and stop watching me. They’re my bones.”
“I have no intention of being criticle,” I said. “And they are your bones, although not a matter to brag about. But I was only thinking, if you were fater and had a permanant wave put in your hair, because one of the girls did and it hardly broke off at all.”
She then got up and flung down her napkin.
“Mother!” she said. “Am I to stand this sort of thing indefinately? Because if I am I shall go to France and scrub floors in a Hospitle.”
Well, I reflected, that would be almost as good as having her get married. Besides being a good chance to marry over there, the unaform being becoming to most, especialy of Leila’s tipe.
That night, in the drawing room, while Sis sulked and father was out and mother was ofering the cook more money to go to the country, I said to Carter Brooks:
“Why don’t you stop hanging round, and make her marry you?”
“I’d like to know what’s running about in that mad head of yours, Bab,” he said. “Of course if you say so I’ll try, but don’t count to much on it. I don’t beleive she’ll have me. But why this unseemly haste?”